Loading…

Apple volumes rise, dollar sales decline

DRC-5lb-Pinata-Pouch-Stemilt

Apple volumes rose nationally (up 1.8 percent) for the second consecutive month yet continue to show decline in dollar sales (down 3.6 percent) over last year. Stemilt revealed these facts and more in its latest episode of Fast Facts The Cast. The video podcast provides retailers with apple category performance stats and analysis based on Nielsen scan data from January 2020, compared to the same time the year prior.

“Honeycrisp volumes were up an incredible 22 percent year over year in January, but lower retail prices on this consumer favorite made for a dollar increase of just 4.6 percent,” said Brianna Shales, senior marketing manager at Stemilt. “Apples are in a period of deflation with a larger crop nationally this year. With more volume, Honeycrisp promotions should continue but retailers will want to look closely at their Honeycrisp strategy as we near spring to ensure they aren’t leaving dollars behind.”

The top five apples by volume in the U.S. during January were Gala, Honeycrisp, Fuji, Granny Smith and Red Delicious. Gala and Granny Smith each had volume increases of nearly 1 percent year-over-year, but a difference in crop years makes those figures stand out.

“Last year, we had a shortage of Granny Smith apples and this year we have a larger, and truly high-quality crop,” said Shales. “The green holiday, St. Patrick’s Day, is an ideal time to promote Granny Smith but this variety is also a must to include in cross-category promotions monthly.”

The spring months are historically some of the best months quality-wise on apples, Shales noted. It’s also a period of transition for growing regions on some berries with seasonal items, like cherries, yet to arrive in stores.

“This opens the door for apples and makes cross-category ads a great idea for ensuring produce sales grow during the late winter and early spring months," she said. "Promoting multiple varieties on ad will increase that volume rise and give the category a boost.”

Organics were a brighter spot for the apple category in January 2020 with volume up 10 percent and dollars up 2.2 percent. Organics made up 12 percent of apple category dollars in January 2020.

“Earth Day is April 22 and a natural time to promote organic apples,” said Shales. “One idea is to carry a certain variety — like Pinata — only as organic. Promote organic-only varieties with the same gusto as conventional to build sales and delight your organic shoppers.”

Stemilt is also encouraging retailers to spread out their apple displays during the spring months. The company unveiled a new pop-out orchard display last week in partnership with Produce for Better Health Foundation and their Have a Plant consumer call-to-action. The display will help retailers give more space to apples while promoting the fruit as part of a plant-based diet.

“Plants are super trendy with consumers right now, and the produce department is home for a wide variety of fruits and veggies,” said Shales. “We’re looking forward to seeing these bright displays in stores, and hope they inspire shoppers to enjoy an apple a day the Have a Plant way this spring.”

Industry Viewpoint: A love letter to grocery stores
As our society is faced with uncertainty, navigating the rough waters of COVID-19, the grocery stores have found themselves on the front lines of serving the public and keeping shoppers safe. Quickly shifting strategy, meeting shopper demand, abbreviating hours and reconfiguring staffing to support the surge of customers. While Read More ...
Tools of the trade show
This time one month ago the Southeast Produce Council held its 2020 Southern Exposure. Those were the good old days, and boy, what most of us wouldn’t give to go to a trade show now. The recent cancellations of Viva Fresh and CPMA are making people within the industry realize how much they miss trade shows. Not only did a Read More ...
TastyFrutti taking things one day at a time
Since 1984, TastyFrutti, located in Philadelphia, PA, has served as a major importer and domestic shipper of fresh fruit, with distribution throughout the United States and Canada. One of its main products is grapes, which it sources from Chile and other countries, providing them year-round for customers. These grapes Read More ...
Industry Viewpoint: Insights to build a tropical program for your business
Shoppers want fresh flavors in their everyday diets, a trend that’s easy to see in the rising sales of tropical commodities. Yet, in a complex category with more than 30 different commodities, retailers are challenged to merchandise, price and promote tropical items that enhance performance of the entire department. It’s Read More ...
Chilean crops looking strong
It is currently the heart of the Chilean grape and stone fruit seasons, and the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association has lots of good news to report. With stone fruit, harvests of nectarines and peaches are practically finished as 17,053 tons of nectarines (23 percent of total export volume) have been shipped to North America, Read More ...
$1M drug shipment is (not) totally bananas
U.S. Customs & Border Protection Office of Field Operations at the Pharr International Bridge cargo facility intercepted a commercial shipment arriving from Mexico that contained more than fresh produce. CBP officers discovered 4,616 pounds of alleged marijuana hidden within the banana boxes that were destined for the Read More ...

Market Watch

the source pro-act

Western growing regions getting hit by rain, cooler temps

floral pulse