More than 100m Marlene apples will make their debut with a new image this month, following a digital contest run by the VOG Consortium to celebrate the variety’s birthday.
Grown in South Tyrol in Italy, Marlene has become one of the best known, most popular fruit and vegetable sector brands in the country.
To celebrate the anniversary, VOG Consortium organised a digital contest which encouraged consumers to submit a drawing or image that evoked the world of Marlene apples.
The competition attracted more than 6,000 entries from 36 countries, with Francesca Cito’s design the winning entry.
“Marlene’s new look for the rest of the season will feature the beautiful nymph against the natural backdrop of our Alpine home,” said VOG Consortium marketing manager Hannes Tauber.
“She will appear not only on Marlene apple stickers but also on the primary and secondary packaging and all in-store materials, as well as on the special celebratory labels.”
A number of in-store activities will also be organised, including art exhibitions, point-of-purchase material and special positioning to bring the artworks closer to consumers.
Some fruit and vegetable departments will also be redesigned with the distinctive Marlene colours and artistic language.
“This high response made the event a resounding success; for the first time, consumers became the protagonists and helped to create the face and image of a very well known international brand, Marlene, shaping it using their creativity and imagination,” added VOG Consortium chief executive Walter Pardatscher.
“This is a new way of communicating, which brings a touch of art into stores, with a positive mood of joy and warmth. The project forms part of the Consortium’s innovative approach, and we hope it will inspire our partners and consumers.”
Marlene’s new identity will also be promoted through a high-impact international campaign on TV, in the traditional press and online.
The project will also star the growers, showcasing their hard work and passion which is fundamental to the success of Marlene apples.
The 25th birthday celebrations will carry on into Spring, where there will be various specific social media contents and a new contest, again involving Italian and international consumers, with recipes from the many countries where the blue sticker apples are a familiar presence.