Washington Pears Hit Promotable Volumes, Shares Stemilt, Chelan Fresh, & Washington Fruit and Produce
WASHINGTON - Pears are still in highly promotable shape as we head into the conclusion of this season’s harvest in Washington State.
Though growers are reporting that volume is slightly down from last year due to smaller fruit sizing, quality and taste are still in top shape with demand trending similar to last year.
Brianna Shales, Stemilt’s Communications Manager, says now is a perfect time to promote pears with the company’s Lil Snappers 3 lb. pouch bags to drive volume and dollars to the category.
“Given the smaller fruit size on pears this year, we’re excited about our Lil Snappers kid-sized fruit pouch bag program forpears,” Brianna tells me. “It was the #1 pouch bag brand for pears last season, moving seven times the volume over other 2 lb. options.”
The Lil Snappers 3 lb. pouch bag contains enough pears to put one pear in two lunchboxes for children every day during a school week.
“It’s a convenient pack for parents, but also works well for those shoppers looking for a smaller piece of fruit,” Brianna continued.
Stemilt is currently picking d’Anjou, red d’Anjou, and still has a few Bosc before the end of its harvest.
Chelan Fresh’s General Sales Manager Tim Evans is seeing a similar trend in quality as the company wraps up its Bosc harvest, noting that growing conditions will be “perfect” moving into fall with cool nights and warm days to finish.
“Quality and demand is very good out of the gate, with Bartlett starting very strong and early red pears moving well,” said Evans. “We’re seeing good demand on both domestic and export for d’Anjou pears. Overall, market conditions are very good to start, along with good movement.”
Though pear sizes were down from last year as a result of the warmer temperatures this past summer, Victor Ratia of Washington Fruit and Produce believes that retailers can expect promotable supplies and great sales to boot.
“A strong US dollar will present some challenges on export markets, but overall industry numbers indicate that we will have a very marketable amount of fruit and early demand for pears seems good,” said Ratia.
Washington Fruit and Produce expects to wrap up its harvest in two weeks, and is currently picking Anjous, Red Anjous, Bosc, Comice, and Forelles.
As of September 21, 2015, the USDA reported pear prices out of Yakima and the Wenatchee District in Washington State on size 70s and 80s at $26.00 - $32.90, size 90s at $24.00 - $32.90, size 100s at $24.00 - $24.90, size 120s at $20.00 - $22.90, and size 135s at $18.00 - $20.90.
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