Organic Produce Display Signs with Design in Mind

organic produce sign graphic design retail

With the many available produce options to offer customers, what can you do to grab their attention? Is it with discounts? Could it be in the way you display products? Location? Or maybe it’s the right sign? We spoke with graphic designer Nate Grundmann from Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op, a seller of Organics Unlimited and GROW organic bananas – their number one selling produce item, to hear from a retail perspective what goes best into creating compelling visuals that sell produce as well as additional tips in managing signage.

For Nate, success in creating signage comes from understanding objectives and crafting messages that speak clearly and in the right tone of the product. “Take time to prioritize, simplify and organize your signage goals into a hierarchy, and then craft your signs to fill their designated niche within that hierarchy. In our contemporary culture of media deluge, less is more, so keep it simple. Your signage should only include what is needed to accomplish your stated signage goals (while staying on brand), nothing less and nothing more.”

Is bigger better? What kind of fonts stand out? Do certain colors work? There are a lot of tools at the disposal of a graphic designer when considering the layout of a sign. Nate says, “A designer has many tools available to make a particular display stand out in a [produce] department. Likewise, the same tools can be used to make a particular part of a display stand out above all the other parts in the display. Font style, size, color, weight and placement are some of these tools, and in combination they determine where in the hierarchy that text lies. The purpose of a display is to stand out and grab customers’ attention, so usually the recommended sign size is “big.” How big depends on factors like the amount of space dedicated to the display and the maximum size of your printer (be it yours or your service provider). It doesn’t have to be overwhelmingly large, just big enough to attract your attention.”

More than ever, consumers are very conscientious when it comes to what they put in their bodies, which comes into effect in produce displays. Nate says, “Increasingly, customers are reading the fine print on labels. At the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op, the information which drives shopping choices most is price, method of cultivation/harvest/production (i.e. organic, fair-trade, humane, etc.) dietary preference (paleo, gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, etc.), and product origin (i.e. Is it locally produced?). So we try to highlight this information on our signage.”

That can be a lot of information. How does one find the right amount of copy without underselling or overselling the products? Nate continues, “We always try to strike the balance of providing just enough information: too little, and customers are left without the information they want; too much, and it becomes information overload. All of the particular types of information I’ve mentioned are trends for the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op, and may not be relevant for another store. In the end, the answer to this question will vary from store to store and ultimately depends on the store’s market niche and the needs of its shoppers.”

GROW bananas sacramento natural foods co-op

Like many Co-ops, consumers are frequent advocates of the idealogy that comes with the territory, so changing signage to keep it fresh and lively is important. Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op provides seasonal, local produce, and Nate says offerings change often based on availability, and thus so does their signage. However, at Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op says, “Displays are changed every two or three weeks. We usually feature what is currently in season, which, incidentally, allows us to design our displays to meet holiday demand since our traditions developed at a time when people were reliant on seasonal availability.”

It isn’t without the great support of retailers like Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op that Organics Unlimited and GROW can be brought to those who seek high quality, fresh, and sustainable organic bananas. Thank you Nate on sharing your wisdom in helping bring more awareness to our produce through creative services!

Do you have additional ideas on how to create signs for organic bananas? We’d love to hear them in the comment section below or send your comments to

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