Stemilt's Brianna Shales Details Steady Pear Market and Holiday Promotions
WENATCHEE, WA - Baking with fresh pears is something I love to do any time of year, but I feel especially inspired around the holiday season. Lucky for shoppers like me, this is one time when Stemilt’s pears are plentiful in grocery stores. As we move closer to Thanksgiving and Christmas, I got in touch with the grower’s Brianna Shales, Marketing Director.
“The market is steady for pears and there are promotional opportunities to take advantage of in this crop. Pears represent a small part of the produce category dollars, so promotions are key to increasing movement and driving incremental sales,” she began. “Pears are a good outlet to drive impulse purchases and can help retailers increase basket size in the produce category.”
Stemilt wrapped up harvest in October and is now well into the pear season, and the last two months of the year present many promotional opportunities for several varieties.
“The overall crop size is down from this year to last, as we’ve seen a short crop get shorter now that harvest has wrapped up,” Brianna continued. “D’Anjou, the main winter pear variety, has good volumes, while Bosc is down overall versus last year. Red pears are promotable and will continue to be as we move from summer varieties to winter ones. Sizing is down from last year, making bagged promotions on pears a great merchandising method.”
November is a key month for pear promotions and leads into December, when World Pear Day occurs on December 4. The holiday timing is great for pear promotions and the time Stemilt sees the most expansive displays at retail, featuring core varieties and also specialty pears, as Brianna told me.
“Pears are one of the best fruits for the super-popular charcuterie (and even butter) boards that are taking over TikTok and other social channels. What a perfect holiday tie-in,” Brianna added. “We need to keep working to educate consumers about the different varieties of pears and also when to enjoy them for the best experience. Once a consumer has a great pear eating experience, they will come back for another!”
On top of the holiday excitement, Stemilt is wrapping up with the season for its new branded pear, Happi Pear®.
“We are super excited about its potential to bring something new and different to the category. It’s a fruit that performs well at retail because of its flavor and ability to hold pressures, while also doing its job of delighting consumers,” Brianna said.
As you’re building your produce aisle displays this holiday season, keep in mind that many consumers have pears on their shopping lists, and those who don’t will be easily swayed by an impressive display and some gorgeous fruit.