Cooperation is the key to hosting a successful National Frozen Food Month, according to three regional frozen food associations that won Golden Penguins this year.
Retailer support is essential to the event, said Debra Van Der Weide, executive director of the Southern California Frozen Food Council, now a three-time Golden Penguin winner. "We have 100% retailer participation, and we're working together as a team now," Van Der Weide said.
The SCFFC, which won first place in the category for 75 members or over, wants the National Frozen Food Association to create a Platinum Penguin Award to encourage three-time winners to enter next year's contest, she added.
The North Florida Frozen Food Association, winner of the category for 26 to 75 members, hosted a strong NFFM because executives from all facets of the food industry pulled together to organize the event, said Bill Grondzik, president.
"The total commitment from all the brokers, our trading partners and the manufacturers, which included community involvement, media and retailer support, made March a very successful frozen food month," noted Grondzik.
The high level of retailer and broker cooperation experienced in the region served by the Spokane Frozen Food Council, which placed first in the category for 1 to 25 members, helped NFFM sales increase 5% over 1995, according to Doug Poffenroth, president.
Retailers were eager to participate in this year's event because of the media exposure they received for the month, Poffenroth said.
"We take each account that has ads that week, and we do demos in their key stores that weekend," he said, adding that live radio and television remotes also drew attention to the stores.