Silk targets a new consumer group—’Intermittent Vegans’—with new campaign

Who: Danone Canada’s plant-based Silk, with Momentum Worldwide, Heydsaffer for production, Married to Giants for post, Wavemaker for media.

What: “Intermittment veganing,” a campaign aimed at reaching consumers who might not be willing to take the full plunge into veganism, but could be receptive to the idea of incorporating more plant-based options—like Silk—into their diet.

When & Where: The campaign launched this week across TV and social. It also includes a partnership with a group of celebrity chefs including Matty Matheson and Chuck Hughes.

Why: Silk coined the new dietary term “Intermittent vegans” to describe the group of people who it says are feeling overwhelmed by the increased array of choices and eating philosophies, as a way of giving them an idea to rally behind.

“With changing consumer preferences, this light-hearted term is about empowering those who might not want to take the full vegan plunge, but who acknowledge the benefits of a more plant-forward diet,” says Genevieve Bolduc, marketing director, plant-based category at Danone Canada.

How: The main thrust of the campaign is partnerships with renowned Canadian chefs including Hughes, Matheson, Connie de Sousa and John Jackson, all of whom are renowned for what Silk describes as “meat-based menus.”

As part of the partnership, the chefs will be “veganizing” some of their signature dishes with Silk products such as Silk Creamy Cashew. Silk is extending the idea through a consumer contest inviting everyday Canadians to “veganize” some of their favourite recipes and post them on social using the hashtag #IntermittentVeganingChallenge for the chance to win $3,000 in prizes.

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@mr.benfield challenged chef @adrianforte to cook a vegan version of his favourite souvlaki recipe. 🍽 On the menu: seitan, vegetables, fresh herbs, and a "magic sauce" made with Silk Creamy Cashew beverage. Check out our highlights to learn all about intermittent veganing. Recipe in bio. – @mr.benfield a mis au défi le chef @adrianforte de cuisiner une version végane de sa recette préférée de souvlakis. 🍽 Au menu : du seitan, des légumes, des herbes fraîches, et une « sauce magique » faite à base de boisson Silk Cajou Crémeux. Rends-toi sur nos highlights pour tout savoir sur le véganisme intermittent. Recette en bio. – #SilkCanada #IntermittentVeganing #VeganismeIntermittent #PlantBased #PlantPowered #DairyFree #Vegan #tryplantbased #goplantbased

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The TV spot opens with a Canadian everyman saying “If you change a little, you can change a lot,” before introducing the concept of “intermittent veganing.” The spot goes on to show him making a smoothie using Silk Oat Yeah oat milk product.

The actor also dispels that idea that plant-based milk is strictly for health and fitness enthusiasts by saying “because not all people are meant to run marathons, and not all people are meant to go full vegan.” The spot ends with a shot of various Silk products, with the actor saying “Silk makes mixing a little plant-based goodness into your life easy.”

Got (plant-based) milk?:  Along with other animal products, per capita consumption of dairy milk has been steadily declining among Canadians for years, reaching a low of 65.85L per person in 2018. That was down from 85.6L in 2014.

At the same time, the global market for plant-based milk (including almond, soy and rising category star oat milk) is predicted to reach US$21.5 billion by 2024, with a CAGR of 10.18% over the next four years. Its growth will be driven by a combination of factors including an expansion of the beverage industry, growing obesity rates, a growing diabetic population, rapid urbanization and increased disposable income.

And we quote: “[W]e believe putting plants first is a meaningful step to change the way the world eats for the better… Silk was founded on the principle of healthy innovation, and we have a responsibility to offer options that help people live more balanced lives.” — Genevieve Bolduc, marketing director, plant-based category at Danone Canada.

Chris Powell