Retailers are increasingly capitalising on consumers’ desires for sustainable, home-grown produce, while innovators are creating new solutions to sell in-store to a growing tribe of health conscious, provenance-passionate and eco-friendly shoppers. PBUK catches up with young Dutch entrepreneur and rootstock grower Bart Blok, from Fairplant BV, to learn more about the new ‘Baby Tree’ concept.
The ‘Baby Tree’ may be in the early days of development, but could blossom into a super sustainable solution, both at consumer and business-to-business levels, if Blok’s strategy for 2017 goes to plan.
The premise it simple; plant the Baby Tree at home, work, wherever, nurture it and eventually grow, harvest and enjoy your own apples.
It’s not yet on the market, but as Blok explains, the UK is one of the go-to countries on Fairplant’s radar.
“The Baby Tree is brand new and we are aware of the fact that the UK market could be very interesting for us and currently we are carrying out research. If we are looking at the product life cycle of Baby Tree, then we can draw the conclusion that we’re now working on the first stage, namely the introduction stage,” Blok tells PBUK.
“Demand has to be created and potential customers have to be prompted to try the product. We are working on the final elements in order to complete the product and the target date that we have in mind to launch Baby Tree on the European market will be the spring 2017.”
Tapping into the sustainability trend is top-of-mind for Blok who is in talks with potential clients since showcasing Baby Tree last November at the Interpoma fair in Bolzano, Italy.
“We had visitors from all over Europe who were really attracted to Baby Tree.
“We’ve had contact with an Irish company who said that sustainability and tapping into home-grown produce is a growing trend in Britain and so we look forward to receiving more of this kind of response from the UK. This of course depends on the results our market research gives us.”
On the supply side, the plan is to collaborate with schools as well as go in-store.
“Besides garden centres, supermarkets and ‘Do It Yourself ‘stores we’ve learned from the exhibition in Italy that it’s also attractive for educational organisations, like primary schools, universities in the green sector and organisations with educational projects.
“We see ourselves expanding in the UK B2B and consumer markets, but we do not yet know when in 2017.”