recipe for change
Kraft Foods developed an online community of 300 people who were chefs, foodies, nutritionists, butchers, farmers, and bloggers – people who were passionate about farm-to-table movements, food trends, global cuisine, healthy eating, and experimenting with flavors. This community, called Cultivar (pronounced: Cool-tee-var), was the go to source for Kraft Food brands to learn about how to take their food from processed to inspiring. There was one problem. No one in Kraft knew about it.
The Breakthrough Innovation Team at Kraft Foods, our client and the creators of Cultivar, came to us with a question. How can we launch and promote this online community within Kraft? In their minds they wanted to reach the brand managers, the movers and shakers. Their directive – "It can't be just a poster in the cafeteria". So naturally… they wanted an iPhone app.
We had heard this before, clients wanting an app because they thought it was the best thing to do. We wanted to make our own determination of what was the right thing to do. We hopped on a plane and paid a visit to Kraft HQ.
We learned something that would set us on our course. Kraft people were closet foodies and they wanted to do work that stepped away from the legacy of processed foods the company had been known for. Jackpot! We were on our way.
Expanding the reach + Change Management
Cultivar wasn't just a resource for brand managers to test ideas and get input. What we were on the verge of was that Cultivar represented a change initiative. This was a culture shift. An app in the hands of a brand manager was only part of it.
Technology strategy

We had to figure out a way to reach people. This was not going to be an email blast – what fun is that? The answer was in a technology strategy that would be multiple touchpoints leveraging the fact that employees were given iPhones, that space design in the three Kraft buildings was conducive to a touch wall experience, and that an employee's desk is where they spend a lot of their time.
User engagement strategy

We knew we wanted the experience to be educational (mirrors the Cultivar mission) and fun (brightens up the workday), and get people excited about this resource (plant the seed of culture shift and Cultivar positioning). A game component with a reward was a good bet: a little friendly competition and a closet foodies dream – a trip to the Food and Wine Festival.
PERFECTING THE DISH
Content strategy
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Experience architecture
There were four main food topics Kraft wanted people to learn about. The Cultivar topics were local/organic foods, global spices and herbs, food trends, and interesting flavor combinations. We used those topics to structure the different areas of learning people would explore. We needed a point of entry . . .
Big idea
We decided Cultivar was actually a place! We came up with the Cultivar Food Intelligence Agency. Within the Cultivar Food Intelligence Agency you would find The Spice Market (global spices), The Grower's Grove (local/organic), The Flavor Lab (flavor combinations) and The Innovation Station (food trends).
PITCH
In our concept round we presented a fantasy world and a spy world. The client chose both.
Ok, a fantasy spy world, we can do that. We went through an aesthetic exercise and presented three distinct vibes and textures – Apothecary, Organic, and a Modern style. The client chose two – Apothecary and Organic.

We had the approach, the place, and the aesthetic – fantasy spy world with Apothecary and Organic vibe. We needed the story, we needed a heroine. Enter Agent K.
Script writing / Casting / Film shoot Stage design / Video editing
In order to guide the user through the experience of the Cultivar Food Intelligence Agency we created the character of Agent K. There would be video throughout the experience to reinforce the ideas, direct the user through the game and as payoffs at end of each section. We held auditions, found her, and went right into a full day video shoot.
UI/UX Design / iOS development / Adobe Air
We took into account the mobile, desktop and touch display and why each needed to be different from a usability perspective as well as how they integrated and "talked" to each other. The mobile app was the take away (the game), the multi-touch display was a check in (check the scores on the leaderboard and unlock bonus points), and the desktop app was full experience (deeper dive while user is having lunch!).
BON APPETIT!
The Kraft Cultivar experience is a multiplatform educational contest targeted to drive corporate change.