Organic Apple Growth Continues Stellar Performance As U.S. Crop Wraps Up

Columbia Marketing International (CMI) reports that organic apples continue to be in high demand fueled by record sales in U.S. supermarkets. According to data from Nielsen Perishables Group, for the apple season that began Sept. 1, 2013, through Feb. 22, organic apple sales at retail surged by 20.4% over the same period last year. Volume increased by 21.9%.

“We really see the growth being driven by expanding sales in conventional supermarkets,” said Mark Hambelton, Wenatchee-based organic sales manager for CMI in Washington State.“There is more space allotted at retail, more products on the shelf consistently and supermarkets are really developing a strong base of consistent organic shoppers.”

Organic apple sales have led in retail performance through the entire 2013 season. Season to date, conventional apple volume sold in supermarkets for the total U.S. increased by only 2.4%, with sales declining by 3.7% due to lower market pricing. “Organic apple performance is all the more impressive when we see that for the total category, it’s organics and brands that are raising the bar for the category,” says Hambelton.

Hambelton observed that organic apples have benefited from significant increases in product assortment and distribution. “It hasn’t been that long ago that organic apples were limited in space with only one or two items available for sale,” he said. “Today it’s not uncommon to see six, eight or more unique organic apple varieties and packages for sale in supermarkets every single day.”

Hambelton credits the growth to stronger marketing programs offered by shippers like CMI as well as the development of organic brands for retailers to utilize. “Organic brand growth is really changing the marketing dynamics for supermarkets. Just like in center store, consumers respond to brands and they look for names they trust. Daisy Girl Organics is CMI’s official organic label and it has continued to grow each year. CMI officially launched the Daisy Girl Organic two-pound Gala pouch bag last fall and it’s already the number one selling branded organic apple bag nationally.”

According to Hambelton, “Organic brand performance has been a proven model in packaged salads for many years. We really put an effort against developing our Daisy Girl Organic apples because the research clearly showed supermarket shoppers respond to organic brands and packaging. That’s exactly what’s happened.”

With the sales surge at retail, remaining supplies of U.S. grown organic apples are dwindling. “It’s really been a strong year for organics but the domestic organic apple crop is nearly sold out,” said Hambelton. “We think our success this year will really set the stage for strong growth leading into the fall harvest in 2014.”

Hambelton says CMI is planning for increased production of Daisy Girl Organics this fall. “With the success retail supermarkets are having this year with branded organic apples, we think this will really set the stage for strong growth next season. We’re already getting inquiries from retailers asking about Daisy Girl Organics for next season.

Source: Columbia Marketing International

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

Apples & Pears Stories

Apples & PearsFall Sprays For BMSB Can Cause San Jose Scale Flare Up
November 18, 2014
Penn State University research entomologist says prevention is best control option for devastating pest. Read More
Apples & PearsPromising Technology To Expand Hard Cider Industry
November 14, 2014
Demand growing as researchers explore the possibilities of mechanical harvesting. Read More
Apples & PearsSeeing The Positives In Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Invasion
November 11, 2014
When it comes to tree fruit and many other specialty crops, BMSB probably falls into the catastrophic category. Read More
Apples & PearsPlant These Hard Cider Apple Varieties
November 10, 2014
Choosing the right variety can have a huge impact on the flavors of hard cider. Read More
Apples & PearsWhat To Do Before Jumping On The Hard Cider Bandwagon
November 10, 2014
Researchers offer suggestions of what to watch out for before planting heirloom or European hard cider varieties. Read More
Apples & PearsUSDA Announces Loss Adjustment For Late Apple Harvest In The Pacific Northwest
November 6, 2014
Multi-Peril Crop Insurance policyholders may be approved for extension of coverage due to warm autumn. Read More
Apples & PearsNew York Apple Industry Awarded $75K To Connect Farms With Consumers
November 5, 2014
Organization to partner with online guide to agritourism events targeted at residents in New York City. Read More

The Latest

Apples & PearsEPA Approves Three New Moth Mating Disruption Products
November 25, 2014
Codling moth and oriental fruit moth are targeted by apple and pear growers. Read More
Apples & PearsOn The Road With The International Fruit Tree Associati…
November 21, 2014
Attention to detail is evident in the production of high quality feathered apple trees at GRIBA’s nursery. Read More
Apples & PearsOn The Road With The International Fruit Tree Associati…
November 19, 2014
Win Cowgill of Rutgers University details a trip through the one of the most concentrated fruit growing areas in the world, the South Tyrol region of Italy. Read More
Apples & PearsFall Sprays For BMSB Can Cause San Jose Scale Flare Up
November 18, 2014
Penn State University research entomologist says prevention is best control option for devastating pest. Read More
Apples & PearsPromising Technology To Expand Hard Cider Industry
November 14, 2014
Demand growing as researchers explore the possibilities of mechanical harvesting. Read More
Apples & PearsSeeing The Positives In Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Inva…
November 11, 2014
When it comes to tree fruit and many other specialty crops, BMSB probably falls into the catastrophic category. Read More
Apples & PearsPlant These Hard Cider Apple Varieties
November 10, 2014
Choosing the right variety can have a huge impact on the flavors of hard cider. Read More
Apples & PearsWhat To Do Before Jumping On The Hard Cider Bandwagon
November 10, 2014
Researchers offer suggestions of what to watch out for before planting heirloom or European hard cider varieties. Read More
Apples & PearsUSDA Announces Loss Adjustment For Late Apple Harvest I…
November 6, 2014
Multi-Peril Crop Insurance policyholders may be approved for extension of coverage due to warm autumn. Read More
Apples & PearsNew York Apple Industry Awarded $75K To Connect Farms W…
November 5, 2014
Organization to partner with online guide to agritourism events targeted at residents in New York City. Read More
Apples & PearsIs Your Orchard Fit For A 5K?
November 5, 2014
Hosting a race can be a great way to tie your farm market to the running and fitness craze. Read More
Apples & PearsMatson Fruit Automates Storage With Robotics
November 4, 2014
High-tech cranes “read” barcodes and retrieve pallets, increasing capacity on less square footage. Read More
Apples & PearsResearch Eyes Geneitcs To Determine Apple Acidity
November 4, 2014
Kenong Xu, an assistant professor of tree fruit genomics at Cornell’s New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, is studying the exact genetic factors that determine an apple cultivar’s acidity level. Read More
Apples & PearsWhy Dry Matter Matters In Apples
November 4, 2014
Appearance is important but internal components are increasingly becoming the focus of apple growers, researchers, and breeders. Read More
Apples & PearsMonster Apple Crop Looms
November 3, 2014
Washington is predicted to have a 162-million box crop by USApple, smashing the record. Read More
Apples & PearsAnother Large Pear Crop In 2014
November 3, 2014
Northwest crop smaller than last year’s record high, but well above average. Read More
Apples & PearsHigh-Tech Building Boom In The Pacific Northwest
November 3, 2014
Grower/packer/shippers are plowing the last few years’ profits into state-of-the-art equipment. Read More
Apples & PearsWashington Apples To Restart Shipments To China
October 29, 2014
Agreement reached between U.S. and Chinese governments to reinstate market access after two-year absence. Read More