Submitted by: Rebecca Brumberg, MBA; E-Commerce & Marketing Manager at Di Bruno Bros.

Corporate gifting is always a challenging topic.  These past few years have been especially stressful with economic conditions raising difficult questions about what is appropriate.  In our business, we have continued to see growth despite economic reporting over the past two years, showing that companies are back in the groove of holiday gift giving.  In tough times it’s especially important to thank clients and business partners for their continued support and hard work.  Many companies are showing employee appreciation through gifting as well, whether it’s a gift card for a local lunch or a small box of chocolates.

Once a company has made a decision to give, the next question is what to give.  Many companies are turning to gourmet gifts for the answer, because:

  • It is the kind of gift that can be shared in an office or taken home by an executive. 
  • It’s not too personal (highly personal gifts can be considered inappropriate).
  • It creates a lasting impression.

According to CNBC, “Corporations sent about $2.7 billion worth of gourmet food as gifts in 2009, growing even in the face of the recession, up 3.8 percent from 2007.  That represents about a third of corporate gift purchases, and remains the bread and butter of the business gifting community.” 

Let’s face it – we all have an emotional connection with the food-love experience – and when we send a business gift we are investing…investing in the experiential positive reaction that we hope the gift recipient will associate with our company.  By sending something truly unique, local, and gourmet, you can create a genuine positive experience.  Plus, the holidays are supposed to be fun, and few things are more fun than great food.

Once you have decided on a general category of gift giving – like gourmet food – the next step is to decide on a vendor.  In the specialty food business, the fastest growing segment is certainly local.  You can see the influence of this trend every time you go to the store, and it’s wonderful!  I encourage you all to think local first, no matter what you are buying.  There are so many benefits to buying local, my top four shared here:

  1. Your tax dollars stay in the city benefiting all of the residen