Develop a Lobster Branding Strategy that Leverages Maine's Quality Reputation and Exploits Growing Demand for Ready to Prepare Meals

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Agriculture
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$346,000.00
Award Year:
2007
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase II
Contract:
2007-33610-18552
Award Id:
80988
Agency Tracking Number:
2006-00500
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
22 Monument Square, Suite 508, Portland, ME, 04101
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
n/a
Principal Investigator:
Patricia Pinto
President
(207) 321-2109
ppinto@maine.rr.com
Business Contact:
Patricia Pinto
President
(207) 321-2109
ppinto@maine.rr.com
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
On a worldwide basis, Maine is famous for its lobster and enjoys an inherent brand equity that is unparalleled. Yet, no company has taken advantage of leveraging this perceived quality from a mass marketing perspective. In its Phase II effort, Saltwater Marketing proposes to continue developing a business model that will do exactly that. Phase I research indicated that seafood consumers want to easily prepare and consume restaurant quality meals at home. Yet, there are few such options available at supermarkets today. Lobster is perfectly positioned to fulfill this unmet need. Today, about two-thirds of lobster harvested in Maine is shipped to Canada to be processed. Canadian firms earn between $70-$110 million by processing Maine lobster. This processed product is then re-exported back to U.S. foodservice chains. Saltwater proposes to change this paradigm by offering consumers a choice to purchase fresh Maine lobster meal solutions at their supermarket and recapture a portion of the current valueadded earnings that Canadian firms enjoy from processing Maine lobster. A branding success story can be realized by recognizing an opportunity to develop products that truly meet emerging consumer needs and identifying how current industry weaknesses can be overcome. The proposed project focuses on building markets for a new product category of Maine branded lobster, developing products that address important consumer needs, creating branding elements and test marketing. This is achieved by employing an innovative business model and unique partnership that also offers important benefits to lobster harvesters.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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