The Co-operative Food enlists Annabel Karmel to give baby food range a boost

Karmel (centre) with Salma Khan, category trading manager for the baby category (left) and CJ Antal-Smith

Karmel (centre) with Salma Khan, category trading manager for the baby category (left) and CJ Antal-Smith (right)

The Co-operative Food has enlisted the expertise of leading UK parenting author and baby food and nutrition guru, Annabel Karmel, to give its baby range a boost in 2014.

Karmel, a leading authority on feeding babies and children, has signed a 12-month contract with the convenience food retailer. As the new face of baby and toddler for The Co-operative, a selection of Karmel’s premium Organic Baby Purees and wholesome Disney snack products will be ranged in an increased number of Co-operative Food stores nationwide.

To help drive category growth and increase customer loyalty, Karmel will also lend her expertise and endorsement to a forthcoming dedicated baby section on The Co-operative Food website with bespoke recipes, video content, articles, expert advice, downloadable food planners and links to Annabel’s popular community hub.

Content will be shared on The Co-operative’s social media channels, and other planned activity includes real-time social media chats for parents to directly engage with Annabel on everything from weaning to fussy eating.  Annabel will also provide bespoke content for The Co-operative’s quarterly Food Magazine.

The Co-operative is also planning to communicate the partnership directly to customers by promoting Annabel’s endorsement with point of sale materials and in-store radio activity.

CJ Antal-Smith, head of commercial for The Co-operative’s baby category, said: “We really want to make The Co-operative Food famous for its baby offering. We stock everything mums and dads need for their babies, right on their doorstep, and our partnership with Annabel Karmel will boost our credibility within this sector with the aim of attracting new shoppers to our stores and showing them that we offer delicious food and a great range of products conveniently. Annabel’s expertise will add gravitas to our baby website and social media channels for mums, and we are absolutely delighted to announce this partnership for 2014.”

Karmel said: “I’m really excited to be working with The Co-operative Food this year to drive the baby category forward. It is so important to build trust with new parents in the baby aisle; and, with more than 20 years of baby food experience under my apron, I can give shoppers the confidence and inspiration they need to bring up healthy, happy babies.

“As well as offering sound advice, tips and recipes to Co-operative customers, my premium baby food range and wholesome snacks will provide delicious, flavoursome options for growing families.”

The Co-operative has recently launched its first own-brand range of nappies, and plans to boost its own-brand baby range further with more products and offers in 2014.