PR case study

Alara Wholefoods

Organic and sustainable food pioneer Alara Wholefoods hired Natural Newsdesk to manage its media relations and support its wider marketing and communications activities. A key objective of the brief was to retell the ‘Alara story’ – the company has a rich 40-year heritage and long track record of sustainability ‘firsts’ – to a new audience of younger citizen consumers. At the same time, the refreshed PR campaign would seek to strengthen Alara’s influence in policy-making, media and industry circles. 

The initial phase of Natural Newdesk’s work with Alara focused on communicating the brand’s position on key sustainability issues and its own industry-leading practices. This included Alara’s pioneering work on Scope 3 carbon emissions, and the development of its Net Zero Food range. 

The campaign has also helped elevate Alara’s community engagement and its commitment to making affordability part of the organic conversation. A second phase has focused on getting the message out on key new product lines, including the recent Alara Singles launch. 

In its initial 12 months, the campaign has employed a range of delivery methods including:

• Press releases 

• Blog posts

• Op eds  

• Video interviews 

• Social media-friendly video bites

This has secured regular coverage in UK trade titles and International new sites, creating a significant increase in brand awareness among key target audience groups. 

Special projects have included communicating Alara founder Alex Smith’s views on the current debate on genome editing. Following a successful pitch to The Grocer magazine (512,630 unique monthly users), Natural Newsdesk helped Alara secure the high profile Saturday Essay slot in the magazine, which was accompanied by a front page news lead drawing on the piece. The piece was extensively quoted in The Sunday Times, and led to an interview with Radio 4’s Food Programme

Despite the dual challenges of the pandemic and trading in the new post-Brexit trading environment, Alara reports that its sales (as October 2021) are running at significantly above 2020 figures. In September 2021, Alara founder, Alex Smith, was featured in Sainsbury’s Magazine as its ‘Food Hero’.

Alara founder, Alex Smith, is Sainsbury’s Magazine ‘Food Hero’, September 2021
Alara founder, Alex Smith, appears in a video interview with Natural Newsdesk’s Jim Manson

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