Wiki Spanish Food editorial team
Twenty-three years after Spanish agri-food cooperative Anecoop brought its seedless Bouquet watermelon to market, this fruit has become one of its greatest strengths. According to the most recent data from the co-op, seedless watermelon accounts for 75% of the 100,000 tons of expected watermelon sales this year.
The category has reached a milestone in terms of Anecoop's innovation. In 1991, the cooperative decided to add value to a generic product like watermelon, focusing on its weak point—the seeds—and turning it into its selling point, all the while maintaining its classic flavor.
The popularity of its product in and outside Spain has helped place Anecoop in a leading position worldwide in this category, and it remains a frontrunner in seedless watermelon in Europe, with a presence in top retail chains in 28 countries.
The seedless variety is obtained through the cross pollination of three types of watermelon, which produce a fruit with sterile seeds (soft and edible). In fact, for more than two decades, the Bouquet seedless watermelon range has expanded gradually to adapt to consumer preferences, replacing the Bouquet Stars family, which comprised yellow, mini, red with a striped rind and black rind watermelon.
This family includes a line of organic watermelon sold under the Bouquet Bio brand, as well as the new feature this summer: Bouquet Premium, a product which responds to a specific market segment with a medium-size watermelon with a strong color and a high Brix level, which makes it exceptionally sweet.
The success of this range of watermelons is due to the combination of an innovative product with the prestigious Bouquet brand, which has completed the lengthy process that determines the product's superior quality: the design of production programs in collaboration with member cooperatives, according to producing zones (Almería, Murcia, Alicante, Valencia and Castile-La Mancha), detailed commercial planning with distribution clients, and a well-thought-out marketing and image strategy.
This summer, Anecoop will roll out a promotional campaign for its Bouquet watermelon in June and July in several countries, focusing in particular on France and the Czech Republic.
In Spain, once again Anecoop will organize promotional activities as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility campaign, "Cultivamos Futuro" (Growing the Future), which is a success as it is the first initiative to apply gamification techniques to the marketing of fruit and vegetables.
Its interactive platform, www.cultivamosfuturo.com, features the game 2.0 Bouquet Method, aimed at families with children. The goal is to encourage a healthy diet so that the entire family eats more fruit and vegetables and learns routines that can be applied to their regular eating habits.
By overcoming challenges and missions during 28 days (experts say that a routine becomes a habit after 21 days), families can play the Method and include fruit and vegetables in their regular diet, helping children learn to view them as positive while encouraging healthy competition among family members.
Due to the campaign's success in Spain, two years ago Anecoop launched the Cultivons le Futur campaign in cooperation with its subsidiary in Perpignan, Anecoop France. It too has an interactive platform (www.cultivonslefutu.com), where the French version of the Bouquet Method can be played.
A series of one-off actions will also be implemented to support the campaign, including the distribution of Bouquet watermelon in several sporting and children's events.