Stemilt’s Fast Facts Analysis Presents Plenty of Apple Promotion Opportunities for Retailers
WENATCHEE, WA - We’re fully into the second month of the year now, and one thing that I know for sure is that consumers are continuing to seek out fresh and nutritious produce during these times. Recently, Stemilt’s Marketing Director, Brianna Shales, and Communications Manager, Katie Harmon, got together in the grower’s latest Fast Facts: The Cast video analysis to convey that there are plenty of promotional opportunities retailers can capitalize on in the coming months.
“Apple sales made up 6.1 percent of total produce department sales during the last 12 weeks,” said Shales. “Of that, Honeycrisp, Gala, Granny Smith, Fuji, and Red Delicious made up the top five, with Honeycrisp accounting for 29 percent of apple category dollars, but only 21 percent of the pounds, which makes sense for an apple that does and should sell for a premium.”
Apple sales were up nearly five percent year over year from November 7, 2020, to January 23, 2021, while volume stayed relatively flat according to the latest 12 weeks of Nielsen retail scan data. Shales continued to explain that as we round into 2021, the grower is expecting to see strength on apple pricing, including Honeycrisp, which is great for retail dollars. Fuji is another opportunity retailers can take advantage of, with the data showing in the last 12 weeks the U.S. sold three percent less compared to 2020, although dollars were up slightly.
“Fuji is a year-round apple and a staple for apple promotions,” stated Shales. “During the upcoming spring and summer months, Fuji along with Pink Lady® brand apples are excellent choices due to their refreshing flavor profiles and World Famous quality.”
Stemilt currently offers a great selection of Pink Lady apples in a range of sizes. With the apple being last to harvest and getting a later start than most, it is the perfect promotional opportunity. Pink Lady bags make up nearly 43 percent of sales and 57 percent of volumes, however, the grower states in its release, there is a lot of opportunity on bulk and even at promotional pricing, selling per pound via bulk is a great dollar generator.
“Stemilt has plenty of options for retailers looking to boost their Pink Lady numbers, including the Apple Lover 5 lb pouch bag and the Farm + Famous paper tote bag to support bulk sizes,” said Shales. “With upcoming holidays like St. Patrick’s Day, Earth Day, and Cinco de Mayo, retailers should offer plenty of fresh, delicious flavors to delight consumers. Plus, snacking and eating meals at home continue to trend up, so now is the time to promote apples as we head into the spring months.”
Organics is another area of opportunity for retailers, with organic apples making up 16 percent of apple sales and 12 percent of volumes. With Earth Day coming up on April 22, Shales is encouraging retailers to bring attention to their organic selection.
“Earth Day is an excellent time to highlight the organic category and push multi-variety organic ads. Turn to Stemilt’s Artisan Organics™ program for high quality, flavorful organic apples that will certainly leave consumers delighted,” said Shales.
The last eight weeks of Cosmic Crisp® movement were also covered within the analysis. As a new and emerging variety, Cosmic Crisp ranked 14th in the top 20 apple varieties in the U.S. with the highest average retail price. On the West Coast, it was ninth in the category.
“The season will go longer with increased varieties, and promotions are ramping up significantly,” stated Shales. “It’s super important we work together to ensure that shoppers are introduced to Cosmic Crisp during these unconventional times. Retailers should ensure signage is up, nice displays are front and center, and they are exploring creative ways to increase trial. That will lead to a great shift in movement which will be reflective in the next 12 weeks of data.”
It sounds like now is the best time to stock up on a great category to help bring in big holiday sales! To hear more from the grower, click here to watch the latest Fast Facts podcast. To stay up to date in the industry, keep checking back to ANUK.