We hear lots of talk about local food and eating local. On television, we see ads for processed food and restaurants featuring processed food. So why don't we get commercials for local food?
This Foodland Ontario ad was too precious to limit its exposure to our sister blog, CanadianCrossing.com, and its look at Canadian ads. The ad promotes how the food you are buying is local, Ontario, in this instance.
The ad is simple, as sweet as the apple featured in the ad, with nothing fancy. Local food is closer than you think, thanks to Foodland Ontario.
So why don't we see ads such as these on U.S. television?
You do see ads from California promoting California raised food. But those ads feel like they are promoting California over any food.
Ontario comprises a large percentage of Canada in terms of land and people, so promoting food may be easier for Ontario. California is the largest state in population, but smaller as a percentage of the United States than Ontario to Canada.
The USDA wouldn't run such an ad unless that had to do with factory farms. Michigan has great fruit but may not have the resources or interest in running TV ads saying how great their fruit is (their fruit is really good).
We spend tons of money to market food-like substances to a marketplace already well aware of their existence. But natural, local food doesn't have an advertising and marketing budget like processed food.
U.S. farmers and growers could take some inspiration from Foodland Ontario. Would be really nice to see some healthy food promoted on TV. Might even give healthy food some needed credibility in the marketplace. A kid might tug on the mother's shirt and plead for her to buy some apples and broccoli because he saw it on TV.
This commercial for Oka cheese promotes local food in a more conventional fashion.
The dynamic of the ad counts on knowing the contrast of English-speaking tourists in Quebec to get most of the humo(u)r. The magical place he speaks of is "not near Quebec City," but is next door (province-wise) in Toronto, Ontario.
Local and regional food used to be a bigger deal in our food supply, but large companies taking things over have virtually wiped out the joys of local and regional food.
The commercial ran on a telecast airing in Alberta, where English is rather dominant.
McCain (no relation to the senior senator from Arizona) is offering a pizza taste guarantee where you would get your money back if you didn't like the taste. The woman (Alison Jutzi) in the ad is clearly lying, but is very cute at doing so.
The idea is that the pizza is so good that you would have to lie to ask for your money back.
Once consumers are home with their food, even if they don't like a food product, they aren't likely to go to an elaborate set of instructions to get back less than $10. Still, as a marketng technique, putting money behind your food product works even if no one takes advantage of your offer.