EXPIRES TODAY

TitleEXPIRES TODAY
ClientSINGAPORE RED CROSS
Product / ServiceSUPERMARKET/CHARITY CROSS PROMOTION
CategoryB04. Charities, Public Health, Safety & Awareness Messages
EntrantLOWE SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE
Entrant Company LOWE SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE
Advertising Agency LOWE SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE

The Campaign

Expires today is an experiment aiming to spark a conversation and change people’s attitudes and habits to unnecessary food waste. In a society where millions go hungry everyday, 1/3 of the world’s perfectly nutritious food will go to waste today just to make space for newer produce. So Giant, one of Asia’s largest supermarket chains partnered with famous chef Jose Alonso from Binomio Restaurant in Singapore to craft a gourmet meal only using ingredients set to expire the day he cooked it. The experiment was held at the Red Cross International Bazaar at the Takashimaya Mall, in Singapore’s most popular shopping hub with over 100,000 people in attendance including the President of Singapore, the First Lady and the attracted extensive media attention, which all helped increase the exposure of the ‘Expires Today’ experiment. The PR was also strengthened by the Red Cross through traditional and non-traditional channels. And the partnership with the highly regarded Head Chef Jose Alonso gave the issue status to help spread the idea even further. As a result it sold out hours before expected. The results were an eye opener. Consumers couldn’t notice any difference in taste or quality. And ‘Expires Today’ began to change perceptions today. And hopefully, change behaviours tomorrow.

The Brief

To ignite a conversation and ultimately change perception. People have become anesthetized to this matter. In a country such as Singapore with a very high median income the majority don’t seem affected by the waste. And most importantly, they contribute to it by embracing such behaviour as throwing out perfectly edible ingredients—a common behaviour highlighted by this social experiment.

Results

This experiment changed perceptions and ultimately reality. Consumers that participated weren’t aware of the size of the issue. When faced with the facts, almost 100% of participants acknowledged their behaviour contributed to food waste. Everyone mentioned they could not tell the food was produced with ingredients set to expire the same day. Likewise everyone who took part said that they would become advocates for the issue. The experiment was held at the Red Cross International Bazaar at the Takashimaya Mall, in Singapore’s most popular shopping hub with over 100,000 people in attendance including the President of Singapore, the First Lady and the attracted extensive media attention, which all helped increase the exposure of the ‘Expires Today’ experiment. All of our goals were met and surpassed. Food that would have been ignored at the supermarket was picked, transformed into gourmet meals and in the end the public not only consumed in droves but it helped spread the message and start a conversation. It’s important to note that every dollar from the sales were donated to the Red Cross in its effort to aid Singapore’s hungry. A healthy society takes care of each other and understands the implications of its acts.

Execution

It took us two full months of planning. Aware of this chronic problem of food waste in Singapore, the Red Cross contacted Giant (one of the largest supermarket chains in the nation) to propose the experiment. Soon, with the partnership established, Jose Alonso, the Chef from renowned Spanish restaurant Binomio stepped in to be the one responsible to turn potential waste into a gourmet meal. The experiment took place at the bi-annual Singapore Red Cross International Bazaar—an event that attracts thousands of people at the popular Orchard Road shopping hub. This year, the event garnered a lot of attention also in the media due to its size and the presence of the country’s President and First Lady. It all happened according to plan. Initially people participated without knowing all the small letters, but once they found out, everyone was pleasantly surprised.

The Situation

In first world nations like Singapore massive amounts of perfectly nutritious food go to waste everyday. The false belief that ingredients have shorter lifespans than they actually do leads to this unnecessary behaviour. The Red Cross wanted to start a conversation, highlighting that a lot of the food going to waste could be used to feed those who can’t afford to meet their nutritional needs. PR was integral to this campaign as it was launched during the Singapore Red Cross International Bazaar and depended on PR to draw in thousands of participants and exposing them to this experiment.

The Strategy

The experiment was planned with three pillars: the supermarket partner, the Chef and the Red Cross. The place where our target audience usually ignores the food that ends up going to waste, the person responsible for crafting the meal that would change people’s perception and the organization that has the power to use the results for both: public relation and donation purpose.

Credits

Name Company Position
Erick Rosa Lowe Singapore Executive Creative Director
Fabio Santos Lowe Singapore Senior Art Director
Gonzalo Olivera Lowe Singapore Group Account Director
Elysha Chua Lowe Singapore Senior Account Executive
Ines Gomes Lowe Singapore Agency Producer