Consumers are buying more than just your product

Growing a good product is no longer enough. Farmers also need a compelling story behind it.

A report commissioned by AgriFutures Australia found that consumers want to know where their produce came from, who is producing it and how it was produced.

Why does it matter? Because telling the story behind a product gives it a chance to shine.

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The report states: “By communicating the provenance of produce and value-added product, including how it was produced and transported, farmers and producers may obtain a competitive edge over their rivals and potentially, the ability to access niche markets and higher profits that might normally be unattainable.”

The interest in product provenance has been building over the last two decades and to use an Australian example, is one of the reasons restaurants specify whether their oysters are from the Clyde River or Wallis Lake. The diner knows there is a difference and buys into that.

The report found consumers “are also increasingly conscious of food provenance when dining out. Next to price, food provenance and nutritional value are impacting consumer choice. Provenance and products that are grown in Australia and owned by Australian businesses were identified by 19% of consumers as the most top-of-mind characteristic at food service occasions.”

It also found that 99% of survey respondents would pay more for products with transparent information about the provenance of food. 70% agree their purchases are always or often influenced by this transparency, and 100% of millennial mothers would pay more for products that provided transparent information about provenance.

AgriFutures Australia believes that building a product’s provenance into a compelling story “can play a critical role in sustaining, increasing or expanding market share for Australian products.”

Unsure how to start? AgriFutures Australia has created a suite of resources to help Australian producers improve their storytelling. Not based in Australia? Well, it is worth checking out anyway as these lessons can be applied to many global markets.

The resources include:

· Summary of consumer trends towards provenance, and technologies and platforms for sharing production stories.

· Practical guide and templates to help producers to share their story.

· Case studies outlining how producers are capitalising on the benefits of improved provenance storytelling within their businesses.

Connect the consumer to the farmer through the power of storytelling (image by Signature Oysters)