The definition of artisan reflects on a simpler time when craftsmanship mattered, and it’s starting to resonate with more and more consumers.


Can healthy food marketing keep up with the times? A “Mass Artisanal” trend appears to be upon us and it’s creating a real conundrum for brands.

More and more Millennials are demanding products that are pure, crafted, and created with respect. The result-these smaller brands, which used to only be found in specialty stores and farmers markets have found a way to get their sought after products into stores like Shoprite, Walmart and more.

That means the traditional “mass” brands have some stiff competition to deal with.

After all, it’s much cooler to be sporting a bottle of Kombucha than a can of coke. It is not only a healthier choice, but it has a small batch and handmade perception, both popular buzzwords.

Buchi Kombucha started out as small brand brewed by two moms (Sarah Schomber and Jeannine Bucher) from Ashville, North Carolina. As the brand grew, they applied for a Local Producer Loan at Whole Foods, who has championed so many small brands. Whole Foods helped Buchi start a much bigger distribution. But Buchi hasn’t lost itself; the owners believe that even while their economic opportunities rise they can continue to embrace their philosophy of “producing wholesome nutrient-rich, regionally produced food that nourishes our bodies, our environment and the local economy.”

Now you can find several brands of Kombucha even at stores like Walmart. That’s the definition of Mass Artisanal.

Barkthins is one of my favorite brands that’s gone mass without hurting its artisanal reputation.

This indulgence brand has created a new category “Snacking Chocolate”.

Consumers eat it out of a bag like potato chips. Millennials love it and give it credit for being better for you because of its high quality and minimal processing.

Barkthins began as a start-up concept. The creator Scott Semel’s vision was to produce a product with high quality ingredients and make it “commercially viable.”

He didn’t want the product to be so exclusive that the masses couldn’t afford it. He pitched to big retailers from the start. It hit shelves in 2013 and its popularity skyrocketed. Now you can find these higher end snacks at Whole Foods Market and Target.  That’s a prime example of what healthy food marketing can do when applied right.

We can also learn from brands that didn’t quite get it right.

This past year Mast Brother’s Chocolate (incredible chocolate!) made a faux pas when consumers discovered that these artisanal bars were being produced from re-melted chocolate took to social media to lash out at the brand.

The amount of negative press was overwhelming. The company apologized on their website and is now devoted to being transparent. They also offer factory tours every day of the week so anyone can see how the chocolate is made.

Healthy food marketing is always changing.


Transitioning from artisanal to mass artisanal is possible but you have to be relentless about sticking to your brand integrity along the way.

Consumers will not only appreciate you for it, they’ll show their support with their dollars.

Artisanal Products are making their way to the masses. What does that mean for marketers?