ELIZABETH, N.J. -- Wakefern Food Corp. here orchestrated an in-store sampling event throughout retail member units of a dozen branded grocery items, in a joint program with Family Circle Magazine.
The event, entitled "Sample This," was centered on a summer barbecue theme and took place in 180 ShopRite stores serviced by Wakefern on Saturday, Aug. 6.
It will be repeated twice more before the year is out, according to sources at Family Circle. Officials at Wakefern were not available for comment.
For the Saturday in-store event, a table was set up in each ShopRite unit with dry sampling and wet sampling of the products involved. The event was a six-hour affair, starting at 10 a.m.
Wakefern's own product demonstration department conducted the sampling, and also distributed collateral materials such as coupons, recipes and other types of promotional literature.
The products were from manufacturers who are participants in a Family Circle advertising program. They included Crystal Light drink mix for $3.59, Dixie Kids paper products for $2.29, 16-ounce Green Giant American Mixtures for $1.99, 1-quart Hellmann's Reduced Fat Mayonnaise Dressing for $2.69, Post Banana Nut Crunch cereal for $3.89 and 100-foot Reynolds Plastic Wrap for $2.69. Industry associations such as the Beef Industry Council, Beef Board and National Dairy Board also participated.
Both ShopRite and Family Circle ads featured the products and described the coming event in detail. The "Sample This" promotion was also supported with in-store radio spots.
It was the second such promotion this year under an exclusive ShopRite-Family Circle arrangement. The first took place in March and centered on an Easter sampling line-up.
The cooperative wholesaler will conduct two more such "Sample This" events in 1994. An event on Nov. 19 will carry a "festive food" theme, while a Dec. 17 sampling will incorporate a "holiday baking" theme, according to sources at Family Circle.
Family Circle solicited manufacturer participation in a letter sent to prospects, which explained that, "By working directly with one supermarket chain, [Family Circle] can deliver what no one else can. 'Sample This' will sell more of your products."
To back up this claim, Family Circle is providing universal product code scan data to the participating vendors, reflecting the sales prior to, during and after the event, said the magazine source.
The Family Circle "Sample This" ad also included a discount coupon to the kids' theme park Sesame Place, redeemable with a ShopRite store register receipt.