The Produce Marketing Association is asking industry members to vote in favor of the group presenting a panel at the SXSW festival in March. ( Courtesy Produce Marketing Association )

The Produce Marketing Association is targeting  an unlikely venue to promote the role of fresh fruit and vegetables in a healthy diet.

PMA has submitted a proposal to organizers of Austin, Texas’, annual music festival South By Southwest, known as SXSW. The produce group is seeking approval to present “Tap Primal Instinct to Fuel Your Food Movement,” a panel that features new PMA-commissioned research into food choices and “why rational thinking alone can’t trump primal desires,” according to a news release.

“By taking our industry out into the world and bringing the world in to experience our industry, we broaden our perception beyond agriculture or a side dish and demonstrate our relevance to modern cultural currents. In doing so, we create demand,” Lauren M. Scott, PMA chief marketing officer, said in the release.

PMA is asking industry members to help make the panel a reality at SXSW in March 2019 by voting online. Festival organizers, through the SXSW Community Voting program, allow the public to help choose topics at the festival. Voting continues through Aug. 30. PMA is also encouraging people to leave comments on the voting page. Scott is featured on a video promoting PMA’s participation at SXSW on the voting site.

Community votes account for 30% of the final decision on the topics presented during the SXSW education program, according to the release.

Panelists chosen to participate in the discussion, to be moderated by Scott, are:

  • Adam Cooper, vice president of marketing and insights at The Wonderful Co.;
  • Lisa Cork, owner and director of Fresh Produce Marketing Ltd.; and
  • Stephen Springfield, executive vice president and chief marketing officer of Sentient Decision Science.

The discussion is designed for everyone from marketers, researchers, consumer enthusiasts, food lovers, policy wonks and heath nuts, according to the release.