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Michigan asparagus gets off to an early start

The Michigan asparagus season is underway and this fan favorite is arriving in stores about a week earlier than normal due to warmer winter. Currently, volume is on track with thick and tender asparagus ready to take center stage on plates and in bowls nationwide. 

The timing could not be better as consumers have the option to incorporate this nutritional vegetable into their spring and summertime meals. As shoppers prioritize living a healthier lifestyle, cooking at home has continued to trend making the kitchen an exciting space for families to encourage their children to try new foods. With ethical food choices becoming a stronger focus, more Americans are paying attention to where their food comes from – giving Michigan asparagus the opportunity to shine. 

When shopping in stores or at supermarkets, consumers can look for “Michigan Grown” labels indicating locally grown U.S. products. They can also keep a lookout for point-of-sale and promotional materials with more information including tips and recipes at their local grocery stores. There are nearly 100 Michigan farm families committed to providing premium, sustainable products. 

“Supporting Michigan asparagus growers is the key to ensuring high-quality, premium products remain in the produce section for years to come,” said Sarah Greiner of Todd Greiner Farms, who is chair of the Michigan Asparagus Advisory Board. “As sustainable and local messaging continue to remain top-of-mind, featuring our product signifies a commitment to not only supporting local growers, but meeting consumers demands – all who are looking for healthier foods that meet their health and dietary needs.”  

Jamie Clover Adams, executive director of the MAAB, said, “With Michigan asparagus, consumers can enjoy the taste, without feeling guilty about helping themselves to seconds at the dinner table or enjoying it as a late-night snack. The decadent and colorful flavor palette paired with its long shelf life makes mealtime that much easier.”  

As digital marketing continues to drive purchasing, a recent study reported that 44 percent of consumers prefer to learn about a new product via video content. Throughout the season, MAAB is set to incorporate different forms of digital marketing including working with a dog content creator to create recipe content (both human and pet-friendly), advertising online and on social media, and having a recipe content creator visit Michigan to document her visit and provide viewers the ultimate asparagus experience. 

Additionally, MAAB is supporting sales by making a significant investment in retail and in-store promotions, working with key partners to identify how to move the needle and encourage impulse purchasing. The efforts will be a mix of both online and traditional marketing to capture all age demographics who have different preferences for the shopping experience. With consumers prioritizing their health and body above all, call outs related to “buying local” or “MI grown” aid retailers' efforts to attract new customers and take their produce departments to new heights.

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