The FMI Foundation created the Gold Plate Award in 2013 to highlight the outstanding programs implemented by the retail food industry to encourage family meals. Examples include healthy family meals, quick and easy family meals and recipes, cooking with kids, themed dinners, breakfast with the family, MyPlate meals, and much more. The award recognizes outstanding programs that food retailers and suppliers have implemented, to encourage families to share more meals, together at home, more often.
Coborn’s Inc’s, “Kids Cook at Home for National Family Meals Month!” campaign was a huge hit. The campaign focused on getting kids involved with family meals through their Kids Cook at Home virtual cooking class series led by a Coborn’s registered dietitian. About 116 kids attended the classes with their families to make recipes like 10-minute burrito bowls and quesadillas. Coborn’s campaign also included: TV appearances, meal solution endcaps, weekly circular, Facebook lives, social media, dietitian's digest email blast, and in-store displays. Thousands of viewers saw Coborn’s live TV segment on Twin Cities Live and over 27,000 people tuned in to Coborn’s Facebook Live.
SpartanNash’s, “Family Meals at Home,” campaign’s goal was to provide awareness, empowering resources, skills, inspiration, and an increased virtual presence to harness the power and healthfulness of family meals overall (i.e., cooking, cleaning, eating). They focused on how to turn any meal into a family meal as an opportunity to connect, learn, thrive and stay strong together in these unprecedented times. Through weekly ad circulars, local TV segments, recipes, and social media, SpartanNash attained over 11.5 million printed ad impressions, 22,000 media campaign impressions, 2 million Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest impressions, and over 30,000 National Family Meals Month™ stickers on rotisserie chicken purchases. Not only were SpartanNash’s in-store grab-n-go rotisserie chicken dinners a hit, their virtual cooking sessions with easy-to-follow recipes and instructions to aide cooking fatigue reached over 15,000 families. Overall, SpartanNash’s downloadable coloring book to get kids involved in the cooking process and be excited about family meals contributed to reaching over 14 million people.
Wakefern Food Corp’s, “Just Add Family” campaign. Wakefern took a 360 approach and focused their campaign on customer engagement, in-store execution, digital and social media, as well as community and associate engagement. Wakefern made sure to maintain Covid-19 safety throughout their stores by using cardboard cut outs of their registered dietitians at their in-store events. Wakefern brought families to the table with their mass media campaign that captured over 12 million impressions through 20 media stories (TV, print, and online) about National Family Meals Month™. Their campaign #JustAddFamily had over 63,000 impressions and 10,000 engagements on Instagram; 215,000 organic impressions on ShopRite accounts; 3.2 million billboard views; and a 28% increase in sales from last year’s National Family Meals Month™.
Campbell Soup Company’s, “Campbell Helps Families Stay Strong with Family Meals,” campaign worked to promote simple meal solutions. The goal of the campaign was to inspire stakeholders to stay strong with their family meals through quick scratch cooking solutions. To do this, Campbell’s created circular ads with recipes containing 7 or fewer ingredients showing that one does not need the kitchen sink to make a delicious and filling meal. Campbell’s mass media campaign included stories and recipes from across the employee spectrum including the CEO. Campbell’s also continued its tradition of having a special edition of its health professional newsletter promoting National Family Meals Month™ resources and inspiration, which was distributed to 20,000 health professionals with a 13% open rate. Across all social media channels (Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn), Campbell’s logged in over 22,500 impressions.
Pork & Pulses. The National Pork Board and The U.S. Dry Pea & Lentil Council joined forces to create “Pork & Pulses: A Powerful Pairing”. This campaign and website focused on nutrients and cost-effective protein options in family meals. Their website was populated with hundreds of recipes and educational materials based on customer demographics: Millennials, Adults/Gen X, Hispanic Heritage Inspired, and Family Meals – the breakdown allowed people to easily find recipes familiar to their taste buds and that spoke to them specifically. Their multi-media campaign included social media, email blasts, videos, and 10 cooking demonstration TV segments. Their Family Feature Videos had a total of 65,200 impressions, and over 226,000 engagements; the press releases received over 2,000 views and hits; and their email blasts had a 27% open rate. With support from grocery retailer partners like K-VAT, powerfulpairings.org reached over 2,000 unique views and close to 500 material downloads.
The Grocery Gal took Oklahoma by storm with her, “The Grocery Gal Presents Family Meals Month,” campaign. The Grocery Gal used her blog to promote National Family Meals Month™ at two local grocery stores: Shelton’s Grocery and Walters Hometown Grocery (both members of the Affiliated Foods of Amarillo Texas association) and collaborated with the Oklahoma Grocers Association to promote her social media campaigns. She brought the benefits of family meals home, literally, by highlighting her own family in the kitchen and provided each store with 500 copies of a dinner time meal planner and 300 copies of a weekly cost-effective, easy recipe. In addition to completely running out of printed material (2,200 total impressions), The Grocery Gal engaged with kids at the stores with a coloring contest and hung up drawings in each store, culminating in 50 colored plates total. Through Facebook, The Grocery Gal reached over 37,500 people; engaged over 600 people on Instagram; and reached over 400 in-person customers a day. At the end of September, The Grocery Gal was asked to extend the program by store customers.
Hy-vee reached millions of people through their 2020 National Family Meals Month™ campaign, which built on their 2020 theme of “coming together.” During National Family Meals Month™, Hy-Vee typically hosts “Kids Eat Free Fridays,” at their restaurants; to add to their generosity, this year Hy-Vee also set up a contactless, drive-thru to giveaway free meals to low-income families in select communities. Hy-Vee also donated meals and services to family center organizations specializing in restoring and building family relationships and assisting children/adults who experience difficult circumstances. For Iowa Stops Hunger, Hy-Vee donated meals, and created a video campaign to explain the importance of ending childhood hunger, and how a meal can change a child’s life. For Minnesota Transitions Schools, Hy-Vee donated backpacks filled with school supplies and canned goods. Hy-Vee went above and beyond this National Family Meals Month™ to ensure that everyone could share a meal with their loved ones around the table.
The GIANT Company recently launched their “For Today’s Table,” campaign that also served as their personal theme for this year’s National Family Meals Month™. GIANT’s program reached thousands of people, and utilized their social media prowess in some new ways. For every photo shared with the hashtag #ForTodaysTable, GIANT donated the cash equivalent, and provided over 100 meals to neighborhoods in need. Additionally, the GIANT company made sure to support their local nonprofit organizations by donating over 2 million to those supporting hunger relief efforts. GIANT’s generosity did not stop there - they focused on the importance of giving back internally. GIANT provided $100 in Grocery Dollars to each of their 35,000 team members; 500 team members decided to give back through volunteering at local food banks. The GIANT Company not only took care of their own during this National Family Meals Month™, but made sure they addressed their community’s needs as well.
Common Threads partnered with the FMI Foundation to promote Family Meals Month. They launched four weekly recipe videos with a multi-cultural focus, which reinforced the multi-cultural roots of their philosophy. Common Threads reached thousands of people through these videos and social media posts.
Produce for Better Health Foundation worked with the FMI Foundation to promote Family Meals Month and Fruits and Veggies-More Matters Month. The goal was to encourage people to eat more fruits and vegetable in family meals. This collaborative strategy included a webinar through PBH’s Health & Wellness webinar platform, with more than 1,000 people registering. PBH also promoted these months through social media, social media influencers and a trade press release.
The Goal Plate Awards recognize retailer and supplier programs that creatively participated in National Family Meals MonthTM in September.
The FMI Foundation will be gathering information about National Family Meals Month participation by food retailers and suppliers throughout the food industry during the month of September. The Gold Plate Award winners will be decided based on each company’s participation.
The following criteria will be used in the selection of Gold Plate Award winning programs:
Winning companies will be selected in four categories: