Crunch Time Apple Growers Teases Largest Anticipated Crop Volume of SnapDragon™ Apples; Jessica Wells and Joel Crist Share
LOCKPORT N.Y. - It wasn't long ago we reported an impending boost to the apple category as Crunch Time Apple Growers' premium varieties hit store shelves. Now we know exactly how big that boost will be, as the supplier is reporting its largest anticipated crop volume ever of SnapDragon™ apples, brandishing a 25 percent increase year-over-year. The beloved apple variety is hitting shelves in select retailers now, with wider distribution expected in Q4 2021 and Q1 2022.
"While other premium apple varieties grown elsewhere in the U.S. have seen challenges, we're seeing really good size, color, and flavor as harvest begins in upstate New York," said Jessica Wells, Executive Director. "After months of nurturing the crop, our growers are excited to get SnapDragon apples, with their Monster Crunch and amazing flavor, into the hands of consumers. We know from our social media channels consumers are ready too. Consumers all over the country have tried SnapDragon apples and want the opportunity to purchase them from their favorite retailers on a consistent basis.”
According to a press release, this harvest season will also mark grower collective's first season with three new distribution partners: Applewood Fresh Growers LLC, Rice Fruit Company, and Riveridge Produce Marketing.
The company has been strategically pursuing these new sales partnerships based on existing retailer and grower relationships, allowing Crunch Time Apple Growers to expand its reach amongst existing grocers and new retail partners, particularly in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions.
To highlight the growing popularity of SnapDragon in the premium apple categor, Crunch Time Apple Growers has teamed up with Category Partners to study the top 10 retailers that carried SnapDragon apples during 2020 crop year, in addition to reported Nielsen data. Some of the study's findings include:
- SnapDragon was ranked the sixth most popular premium apple variety nationwide and the top premium apple grown on the East Coast
- SnapDragon posted double-digit sales growth year-over-year in the East Coast market
- SnapDragon grew seven percent overall in volume year-over-year across all markets
- In terms of dollar growth, SnapDragon generated the 10th strongest performance among the 26 identified premium apple varieties
SnapDragon apples were developed, nurtured, and bred by Dr. Susan Brown of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, as noted in the release. All of the apples are grown in New York, making the variety very cost-effective in terms of transportation to primary selling regions, leading to greater freshness and quality, and lower shelf prices.
"SnapDragon is a variety that changes what people think of eating apples," said fifth-generation Farmer Joel Crist of Crist Bros. Orchards and Crunch Time Apple Growers Board Chair. "SnapDragon has always been about elevating the consumer eating experience and driving consumption of fresh apples. It's easy for us to understand why, in a very short period of time, SnapDragon has risen to the top of the pack."
Building out your apple displays with this top-notch variety is one sure-fire way to boost the produce department as a whole.