Despite operating for over 61 years and being one of Canada’s largest growers of both conventional and organic potatoes, Kroeker Farms had little-to-no brand equity outside of their community. Part of the problem was their struggle to tell an authentic story about their organic and conventional potato brands, because legally, they had to differentiate their organic potatoes from the overarching Kroeker brand. The other challenge stemmed from their current logo: although it had a lot of local equity, it contained a gradient that was difficult to print, making reproduction difficult. To help Kroeker Farms communicate their story authentically and elevate their brand equity, Think Shift was tasked with refreshing their visual identity and brand.
The first step to any brand refresh is a deep understanding of the company’s history and narrative: what they value, how they operate, and the value they provide to consumers. What we found in Kroeker Farms was a deeply rooted commitment to stewardship. The company has a saying — “immer besser” (always better) — which drives them to grow more using less. They value transparency, honesty, and never cutting corners, and have much higher yields in their organic operations than any of their competitors. Because stewardship speaks to both their organic and conventional brands, as well as a growing consumer desire for food transparency and traceability, it became central to the refreshed Kroeker Farms brand. To help communicate this visually, we wanted to create an identity that feels both approachable and bright while still retaining important elements of their old logo; specifically, the circle and letter “K,” which referenced Circle K Drive, the name of the street where Kroeker Farms is located. We created a bold, warm new color palette and improved the harmony between the Kroeker Farms logo and wordmark by increasing the size of the wordmark in relation to the logo and curving the word “farms” in the wordmark in a way that reflected the circle in the logo. In addition, the “K” in the logo was customized to achieve the right balance of weight and warmth, and the typeface for the wordmark was chosen based on the roundness of the “O” and friendly characteristics of the “R.” Two dots were added to the right and left of the word “Kroeker,” which pays homage to the old tin signage that used to be nailed to the exterior of the original farmhouse.
The new visual identity has garnered positive results, both within the organization and with their customer base. Kroeker Farms was very receptive to the new logo and brand identity, and the new brand expression is currently being applied and updated within all brand touchpoints. Kroeker Farms has gone on to expand their distribution and their product is now in every Whole Foods east of the Mississippi River.