FUZZ-FREE kiwis

Chicago’s largely Mexican Hispanic population is being introduced to a new fruit this summer through a campaign from Mendoza Dillon in Newport Beach, Calif.

Zespri International is pushing its Zespri Gold Kiwifruit through radio, outdoor and promotional events to the city’s burgeoning Hispanic population. Ads tout the fruit as “Tu pila natural,” or “Your natural battery,” a play on a well-known Spanish phrase to get moving. The line, while aimed at Mexicans in Chicago, cuts across all Hispanic groups and can be used for Cubans and Puerto Ricans as well.

The gold kiwi, developed in New Zealand, is golden in color and fuzz-free, in contrast to more typical kiwis. “This is a very new variety of kiwi,” said Karen Brux, North America business-development director for Zespri. “This is gold outside, you cut it open and it’s yellow, sweet and tropical.”

Latinos are major fruit consumers, and the sweet tropical taste”resonates with both Hispanics and Asians,” Brux said.

Through the campaign Zespri is attempting to gauge the population’s knowledge of kiwifruit. Research done before the advertising broke this month, and after the run is completed this summer, will test its effectiveness in terms of Hispanic awareness, Brux said.