With record crop, pistachio group launches massive ad campaign

With record crop, pistachio group launches massive ad campaign

American Pistachio Growers, Fresno, Calif., which is anticipating the state’s record crop this fall, is launching an advertising campaign through television, print and digital platforms.

The current crop is being harvested and could hit the one billion-pound mark for the first time in the state, according to Richard Matoian, president of American Pistachio Growers.

“We are investing in our biggest advertising and marketing campaign ever to capitalize on this expansion in U.S. pistachio production,” Judy Hirigoyen, vice president of global marketing for the group, said in a news release. “We have great synergy from all of the work we have done in recent years collaborating with great partners in professional sports, the research community, and with some of the world’s leading nutritionists and researchers.”?

The campaign focuses on pistachios as a “complete protein,” joining the ranks of plant proteins that include quinoa, chickpeas and soybeans that are popular among vegetarians and consumers wishing to move away from animal proteins, according to a news release.

Beginning in mid-November and continuing through next summer, ads will appear in 44 U.S. television markets. American Pistachio Growers is sponsoring New Year’s Eve countdowns in Las Vegas and Dallas.

“Consumers here in the U.S. as well as abroad are embracing the powerful stories of pistachios — that they are packed with important nutrients and have been recognized as being a “complete” protein source, putting pistachios in the company of other plant-based complete proteins, such as quinoa and soy,” Hirigoyen said in the release.

Pistachios rank sixth in terms of value among California commodities, at $1.94 billion, according to 2019 data from the California Department of Food and Agriculture, and are the second in export commodities, at $1.1 billion.

The expansion of new acreage will present marketing challenges in the years ahead, Alison Nagatani, who heads the group’s marketing committee and is a grower in Earlimart, Calif. She cites a Rabobank report that projects bearing pistachio acreage could reach 372,000 acres by 2024-25, a 30% increase from the most recent season.

“Clearly, we have our marching orders to keep blazing the marketing trail, both here at home and in our key international markets,” Nagatani said in the release.

American Pistachio Growers represents more than 800 growers and processors in California, Arizona and New Mexico.