What local nonprofit Avocados From Mexico’s head of marketing Ivonne Kinser calls an avocado “fever” has recently led the company into new territory with the launch of a rewards program and clothing line.
Googling “avocado-related clothing and products” results in millions of hits—everything from avocado-themed bedding, shoes, and toys. Searching just within Amazon brings up more than 40,000 results.
Irving-based AFM, which represents thousands of avocado growers and 62 packers and holds 90 percent market share, wanted to capitalize on this demand. Due to its connection with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, it cannot create monetized programs. So, selling avocado garb was out of the question. Instead, the team created a loyalty program that rewards avocado buyers with themed goodies.
“The more that [the customers] buy avocados in the store, come to our platform, and submit their receipts, they get points,” Kinser said. “And when they accumulate enough points, they can trade them in for avocado items. One avocado is one point.”
The program, called Avocado Nation, uses an AI platform to read consumer receipts, providing Kinser’s team with insight into the number of avocados bought and clues as to how consumers may be eating avocados based on other ingredients in the basket.
“It’s an opportunity for us to partner with other CPG brands or products,” Kinser said. “It gives the machine and the algorithms a lot of insights into what is the [consumer’s] eating behaviors or habits, and then we can serve content accordingly like recipes and that sort of thing.”
Avocado consumers can also gain points by posting AFM or avocado-related content on their social media accounts. Reward options span a wide variety of green goodies, including a custom clothing line created through a partnership with Florida designer Mary Vargas.
“The fashion designer specializes in prints, and these prints are in themselves very unique and beautiful,” Kinser said. “So, you have a very nice, very well-designed print that’s very unique and you [can’t] find anywhere else.”
The line includes six pieces of vibrant, avocado-centered women’s activewear—a nod to AFM’s health-conscious target audience.
“We go after the consumer who is health-conscious because we’re a healthy product, and the consumer who is health-conscious, typically, is also fitness-oriented,” Kinser explained. AFM’s consumers are mostly women ages 24 to 55, and for them, “fashion is a passion point,” she said.
“It was a very careful process to come up with something that even in those 50 million searches, you’re not going to find [anything similar],” she continued.
With plans to launch another collection next year, AFM intends to continue to design women’s apparel for their demographic, and while talks are still early, Kinser did allude to the possibility of eventually partnering with a third party who could manufacture these original designs for their own profit.
“We would not want to profit from that because we’re not allowed to profit, but we just want these to go mainstream and give the opportunity to anyone who wanted to have it,” she said.