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From ugly to hip: Misfit and ugly vegetables now on Albert Heijn's shelves

Misshapen vegetables are at the heart of the newest Albert Heijn commercial. The Dutch retailer is currently putting them on its shelves under the name ‘Buitenbeentjes’ (misfits) brand. Some footage for the commercial was shot in the greenhouses of grower Jeroen Hartman in Friesland. "They look a little different in terms of shape. There’s nothing wrong with the taste, so it's really a shame to have to throw them away," the grower shows in the video.

Albert Heijn started selling the misfits last year. "Initially we came up with a box with a varying, seasonal content. This we offered online and in the store. Later we expanded with apples, pears and peppers and more additions are on the way," the retailer said.

There is also criticism on the campaign. Kromkommer, the organization dedicated to the ;rehabilitation of misshapen vegetables', is pleased on one side with the efforts of Albert Heijn: "But we have one important question: why does AH present the weird vegetables as 'ugly' and 'cheap' in their commercial? The reason why weird vegetables have not found a permanent place in stores to date is because both the retailer and consumer often sees them as unknown and inferior. By emphasizing that the vegetables are 'ugly' and 'cheap' on national television, you confirm the existing perception. While, if we really want to solve the problem, it's very important to turn the quality perception around into something positive." 

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