When Rose Morgan came up with an idea to give local customers packets of sunflower seeds that they can then go and plant at home, she didn’t think her boss would respond the way he did.
The big boss, that is: Morrisons chief executive David Potts.
The reason behind Rose’s idea was simple: she wanted to help local community members plant hope for a brighter future – both metaphorically and literally – as lockdown restrictions start to ease in England and Wales, and soon in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
When she shared the idea with the most senior executive in the Big 4 grocer, he then turned it into a national campaign.
Known as the Seeds of Hope campaign, it entails packets of sunflower seeds being handed out to customers at each and every one of Morrisons’ 497 stores throughout this week.
Rose, who works at the Big 4 grocer’s Peckhams store in south London and is also a Morrisons Community Champion, was blown away.
“Everyone is emerging from lockdown in different ways and I wanted to give my customers fresh hope and food for the heart by putting smiles on as many faces as possible,” she said.
“I had the idea of using sunflower seeds to represent this new beginning and emailed David, our chief executive, to tell him we’d be giving some away in our store in Peckham.
“I’m so happy he liked the idea and am very proud that it will now be taking place in all Morrisons stores.”
The sunflower seeds are being offered to customers in packs of 10 by checkout staff after they have finished their shopping.
The packets of seeds are also included within Morrisons online shopping orders.
Morrisons Community Champions are also working with schools, care homes and community groups to distribute the packs and plant the seeds in their local areas.
“I wanted to give my customers fresh hope and food for the heart.”
Customers can plant the seeds in pots at home and watch them grow into dwarf sunflowers which will be between six and 14 inches tall.
The campaign will see Morrisons give away 2.5 million packets of sunflower seeds to customers in all 497 stores.
The seeds should be planted in a six-inch-diameter pot at a depth of half an inch and will begin to sprout in two to five days.
“This has been a very difficult year for our country and this winter has seemed especially dark and tough,” Morrisons chief executive David Potts said.
“So as spring arrives, and with Covid seemingly in retreat, we want to help celebrate the growing sense of national optimism by planting these sunflowers across the UK, representing the brighter and lighter times of hope ahead.”
Do you know someone in retail who is an unsung community hero? Get in touch: [email protected]