Kiah Ruvalcaba Discusses Fowler Packing's First Season Wrap on New Peelz™ Program
FRESNO, CA - What is not to love about the new Peelz™ California mandarin brand? Lovestruck consumers and retailers will tell you the coveted program delivers on all its promises—bringing a premium, flavor-forward, and eye-catching one-size-fits-all mandarin offering to customers across the globe. Talk about stardom right out of the gates.
As Fowler Packing wrapped up its first season on the new California-based brand, the company couldn’t help but take a second to reflect on the category it helped innovate and the passion it inspired with the world’s citrus-lovers.
“We had a historic first Peelz season and we are excited about the overwhelming response we received from our retail partners and consumers who loved the fresh take on the category, branding, and superior fruit quality,” Kiah Ruvalcaba, Marketing Director, shares with me. “In our first season, we gained national distribution and solidified our place as a national brand. Additionally, we saw success globally with Peelz in Japan, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand, and Fiji.”
Hallmarks of the 2019-2020 season also upped the ante in the category as Fowler Packing brought stellar quality fruit, exceptional volumes, and large sizing on top of high brix to the retailer’s mandarin destination. This first Peelz season ran from early November and wrapped the last week of May. All Peelz-branded mandarins are grown in California’s Central Valley.
“We are grateful for our Peelz partners who took a leap of faith on us to deliver a successful first season,” Kiah tells me. “We attribute our success to delivering on our vision of providing quality fruit, with a fresh take on branding, and a targeted marketing strategy that provided a smooth transition from clementines to tangos to finish the season strong with late season Murcotts. Peelz market share doubled the last four weeks of the season, validating the strength and quality of the brand.”
Next season, Fowler Packing we will be launching its Peelz specialty mandarins which will feature a Peelz Dekopon program as well! What a tease, eh?
“Consumers recognize Peelz as a premium brand and Nielsen data shows that Peelz had one of the highest average retail prices of any national brand. We were stunned by the overwhelming response from consumers who took the time to write us in letters, email, and on social media to share their love of Peelz!” Kiah adds.
Maintaining such momentum did not come easily or without effort. In March, as Kiah tells me, the team faced unprecedented challenges with COVID-19 but, like many suppliers, the company adapted swiftly to meet the increased demands while ensuring employee safety.
Taking the positive and momentous with the challenging and difficult in stride makes this year's success even more of a gift for the team at Fowler Packing.
Cheers, to a wonderful season and the amazing road ahead!