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Madou Farmers’ Association becomes most glamorous grocery store in Taiwan

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Madou Farmers’ Association becomes most glamorous grocery store in Taiwan

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Farmers” associations are a staple of Taiwan”s rural economy, connecting producers with their customers. But many are struggling to attract younger families to their stores, and with loyal customers getting on in years, new strategies are called for. One association in Tainan is blazing a trail, with a recently renovated store that could rival the swankiest boutique. It even holds livestreams of cooking events, bringing a touch of glamor to groceries. Let”s take a look.

Elegant lighting, spacious layout and fashionable wood-finish counters. It looks like a food court in a high-end department store. But this is Madou Farmers’ Association in Tainan.

After 28 years in business, the association has had a makeover. And it’s thanks to chief Sun Tzu-min.

Sun Tzu-min
Madou Farmers’ Association chief
Even we didn’t want to put on the uniforms that were 28 years old! So that’s why I changed them, to provide a sales platform for our farmers, especially our small farmers and young farmers.

Right in the middle of the market sit two kitchen islands, where staff can stream promotional videos and demos of how to use their products. They plan to invite famous culinary experts to join in as well, and give the local producers a 21st century marketing boost.

Sun Tzu-min
Madou Farmers’ Association chief
The coronavirus hit this year, and as it happened, I had a new soy sauce and a new Japanese-style sauce about to hit the shelves. I thought originally I’d hold a press conference, but because of the virus that wasn’t such a good idea. Then we decided to stream a promo filmed here at the kitchen island.

Farmers’ associations have a long history in Taiwan, but many are feeling the pinch as their loyal customers get on in years. They must turn to new strategies to attract a younger clientele.

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