Purpose before profit: Why Innocent wants to leave the planet ‘a little better than we found it’

Innocent is making a renewed push to show it as a brand with purpose rather than profit at its core, as it launches a campaign to help show children how easy it can be to grow their own food.

Innocent recently launched its ‘Sow and Grow’ campaign, aimed at teaching children where their food comes from.

‘Sow & Grow’, which is organised in partnership with charity Grow it Yourself, sees the brand hand out classroom packs with lesson plans, as well as provide downloadable food diaries for parents to fill in with their children to track their fruit and vegetable intake. The brand has also chosen seeds that have almost instant results to grab kids’ attention.

Innocent has run the initiative in Ireland, where more than 2,600 schools have signed up and 78,000 children have grown their own food. On its first outreach to the rest of the UK, Innocent signed up more than 3,000 schools, which in turn will reach in excess of 100,000 children.

After launching its ‘Sow & Grow’ campaign in Ireland four years ago, Innocent is now rolling it out across the UK in a bid to push its brand purpose and “help people live well”.

According to James Peach, Innocent kids brand manager, growing food will allow school children to get a deeper understanding of where food comes from.

“With [growing food] comes better knowledge around nutrition and hopefully healthier eating habits through life,” he told Marketing Week.

The campaign will be promoted on the brand’s kids packaging to inform parents as they shop. Innocent is also working together with TV chef Lorraine Pascale to help spread the word.

Promoting brand responsibility

The campaign fits into Innocent’s wider brand mission, which aims to improve the world. Besides donating 10% of its profit to charity, it also uses green electricity at its headquarters and use fruit from sustainable sources.

Peach commented: ‘We believe that everything we make should taste good and do good. We try to make it easier for people to do themselves good, and to leave the planet a little better than we found it.”

Innocent hopes Sow & Grow will become a long-term initiative that it can build year on year. But it also believes it has a societal responsibility towards encouraging healthy eating habits.

“Our purpose at Innocent is to help people live well, and we know our ‘Sow & Grow’ campaign will help encourage children to eat more fruit and veg and have a better understanding of nutrition from a young age,” he explained.

“We are looking to target parents and teachers as we want to show them how easy it is to grow your own veg whether at home or in the classroom.”

  • ‘Purpose beyond profit’ is one of the categories for this year’s Marketing Week Awards. To find out more, head over to the Awards page.
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