Execulytics Consulting's Mike Mauti Details Watermelon Market in Produce Moneyball Report
TORONTO, CANADA - For anyone who has dealt in the springtime buy or sell of watermelons, you will understand their defining feature. They are big and bulky. Wherever they are in the supply chain, they take up lots of room. In a packing shed, on trucks, in storage, in a warehouse or on the retail floor. Heck, they even take up lots of room on a customer’s counter or inside their fridge.
It is this defining feature that makes watermelons such a challenge; oh, that, and the seemingly insatiable demand for the stuff, particularly during the lead up to the Victoria Day weekend in Canada (affectionately referred to as May two-four) and the Memorial Day weekend south of the border. But anyone who says a good challenge isn’t also a whole lot of fun hasn’t tried the challenge of buying or selling watermelon.
What is it about these May long weekends that create such a significant runup of massive watermelon volumes? I suppose being the unofficial start to summer, people are just itching to get their fill of the iconic fruit. This month, Produce Moneyball dives into this runup looking to better understand what lies ahead.
The accompanying graph details the 45-count seedless watermelon story throughout April and May. The cream-colored bars demonstrate the relative volume during these months. It is apparent that volumes rise dramatically leading up to week 19, coinciding with the May two-four buy. Volume remains steady and high for the balance of this period through week 22, coinciding with the end of the Memorial Day buy.
While last year costs started this period off on a high, testing $0.40 per pound, they quickly dropped to seasonal levels by the time the action began, even over-compensating, dropping to less than $0.20 per pound. This year, Produce Moneyball predicts less volatility with costs remaining in the 20's per pound while being at its low point for the big weekends during weeks 19–22.
Remember, look to Produce Moneyball to plan all your seasonal sales. While there is plenty of art to watermelon, you'll be happy to add some science.
Mike Mauti, Managing Partner, Execulytics Consulting
Leading the Execulytics team, Mike brings more than 20 years of experience as a leader in the fresh foods industry. Over this time, Mike has gained expertise in retail operations, procurement, and merchandising. Specific skills around grocery retailing, particularly in produce buying and selling, make Mike a valuable partner for suppliers and independent retailers alike.