Bard Valley Natural Delights' Study Indicates Date Category Growth
YUMA, AZ - I am one of the many bandwagoners who joined team date in 2020, and I’m not ashamed to admit it. My fellow consumers demonstrated their love for the category with rising register rings, and it showed in a recent study by Bard Valley Date Growers (BVDG). The category grew by $6.0 million in incremental sales, ultimately reaching $114.7 million. Bard Valley Natural Delights’ brand maintains a dominant share of category sales—42 percent of volume and 44 percent of dollars.
“We wanted to have a deeper understanding of sales trends driving the growth of the date category,” explains Neil Merritt, Director of North American Sales. “The breadth of information from this baseline study is critical as we help retailers develop promotions to drive sales. We can utilize the findings to plan and drive successful seasonality programs and create material to help retailers capture additional sales.”
According to a company press release, Natural Delights Medjool dates drove more than a third of the category volume growth at 34 percent, while velocity for the brand reportedly increased by 5.4 percent. Bard Valley has achieved its growth in the category by leveraging a number of unique merchandisers and packaging offerings to help retailers build their sales.
“With the Ramadan holiday beginning April 12, it is important for retailers to know the 2 lb package drove category volume growth during the second quarter, which coincides with the Ramadan holiday,” says Merritt.
The BVDG study indicated that the company's two lb package was up 18 percent versus the prior year, driving 56 percent of category volume growth and a volume spike during Q2.
“Retailers can realize double digit unit and dollar increases with our mini pallet and half pallet for the 2 lb package,” states Merritt. “Visibility is key to merchandising, and cross merchandising in other departments can attract new customers and help drive incremental sales. April 1st is the ideal time to start merchandising Medjool dates to maximize sales for the Ramadan holiday. This is an ideal time to start to promote dates with displays and merchandisers in high traffic areas.”
Sounds like the date category will play a large role in how the fresh produce department evolves in coming months! Stay up to date on the latest as ANUK reports.