PN trims the fat on Almond Board win, rumored to be worth dollars 1.5m

MODESTO, CA: Porter Novelli has snagged the California Almond Board's consumer and influencer account and has started investigating how best to promote the benefits of almonds to health-conscious consumers.

MODESTO, CA: Porter Novelli has snagged the California Almond Board's consumer and influencer account and has started investigating how best to promote the benefits of almonds to health-conscious consumers.

MODESTO, CA: Porter Novelli has snagged the California Almond Board's consumer and influencer account and has started investigating how best to promote the benefits of almonds to health-conscious consumers.

The account is estimated to be worth dollars 1.5 million annually, but PN executive vice president Dan Snyder said no formal contract has been signed yet.

PN's win came after a two-month search that initially drew interest from approximately 15 PR agencies, according to Snyder. The list became narrower as a smaller number of agencies were asked to supply programs on how better to position almonds and define what the target audience should be. Finally, it came down to PN, Burson-Marsteller and Manning, Selvage & Lee.

Almonds have a reputation as a tasty snack, and they are also high in monounsaturated fatty acids (mufas) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (pufas) rather than the more undesirable saturated fat. (They do, however, contain a small amount of saturated fat.)

Snyder explained that the task was to educate people that not all fats were bad. 'The Almond Board is looking to us to help health-conscious consumers understand that fat has many different dimensions and some can be beneficial,' he said.

The CAB brandishes the results of studies that show eating almonds can be helpful in the same manner that olive oil - another substance containing mufas and pufas - has been linked to reducing heart disease. Snyder explained that preliminary thinking about the CAB's account includes the idea of sponsoring and encouraging more studies on the benefits of mufas and pufas and getting them out to influencers in academia and the news media.

'Consumers have been told for 20 years that fat is bad. It's hard to switch gears,' said Snyder about the perceptual barriers that almonds have to overcome with health-conscious eaters. 'But nuts are rich in Vitamin E, calcium and fiber.' Admitting that almonds also have a high calorie count, Snyder rationalized: 'We want to give people permission to enjoy these foods, but to eat healthfully.'

One benefit, according to Snyder, is that a modest amount of almonds would provide a better sense of leaving the consumer's appetite sated than lower-fat snack foods.



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