WENATCHEE, Wash. – Birthday magic, balloons, and a big and bold display of Artisan Organics™ 5lb. apple bags are a few things to expect from Stemilt Growers as they head to booth 2865 for PMA Fresh Summit next week. The leader in organic tree fruits will call attention to increasing purchase size of organics through the launch of its Artisan Organics™ 5lb. resealable pouch bags of organic Gala, Fuji, and Granny Smith apples.
“Organics will be on center stage for us at PMA Fresh Summit as we continue our 30th birthday celebration for Artisan Organics™, while also highlighting the promotional opportunities for organics in this year’s apple crop,” said Brianna Shales, senior marketing manager at Stemilt. “Organics are mainstream today, and core organic consumers are big purchasers of produce. We see an opportunity gap at retail to promote larger volumes of organic apples to consumers and will look to promotions of our branded 5lb. bags to help fuel category growth.”
Organics made up 10 percent of produce sales in 2018, with millennials being a key driver to organic growth throughout the supermarket. According to Nielsen, Millennials spent 13.8 percent more on organics in 2018 than they did the year prior. Apples ranked eighth on Nielsen’s list of the top 10 selling categories of organic products list and experienced a 6.8 percent growth in sales between 2017 and 2018.
“The growth in organics has been phenomenal, yet we still have room to grow, especially on organic apples,” said Shales. “As an industry, we’ve historically placed organic apples in smaller package sizes to help keep the retail price down. Our 5lb. value offering at PMA Fresh Summit goes against that norm and that’s because we want to help organic shoppers (who buy a lot of produce) fill their cart with organic apples. We need big and bold promotions in organics to grow organic apple sales.”
Stemilt ships eight, 5lb. Artisan Organics™ apple bags in a high-graphic bag master carton. The cartons are ideal for building quick displays at retail, but the company also has an organic-specific Easy Pallet Display for merchandising organics in a big way. Both strategies work in a variety of retail formats and can spark sales for a quick promotion period.
“Big displays are an important part of a successful apple promotion, often moving up to 10 times the volume when the product isn’t on ad,” said Shales. “We see the 5lb. Artisan Organics™ pouch bag opportunity as a way for retailers to go bigger than they ever have before on an organic apple promotion.”
Stemilt is wrapping up harvest on its share of the 2019 apple crop in Washington State. A cool summer in eastern Washington has created “incredible” apple growing conditions with the best color on apples in years. Stemilt has increased its supplies of organic apples this crop year with nearly 40 percent of its entire Honeycrisp crop now grown and certified organic. The company also has great volumes, fruit sizing, and conditions for three core organic varieties: Gala, Fuji, and Granny Smith.
“The big three varieties we are focusing on for our Artisan Organics™ 5lb. bag offering are peaking on 88s and 100s with fantastic color and flavor. This value offering on organic apples features dessert-quality fruit and will be a great way to encourage more organic apple purchases this fall and winter.”
Stemilt has been celebrating its 30th birthday of farming organically all year. The company’s late founder, Tom Mathison, transitioned many acres to organic in 1989 and long before organics were mainstream. Today, his grandsons, West and Tate Mathsion, have continued investing in organics with a focus on growing modern varieties of Artisan Organics™ apples to fulfill the company’s mission of delighting consumers.
“It’s been a big year of celebration for Artisan Organics™, complete with a fun company birthday party for the brand earlier this year,” said Shales. “We look forward to continuing the festivities and discussing opportunities for promoting organics in a big way during PMA Fresh Summit.”
Stemilt Growers is a leading tree fruit growing, packing and shipping company based in Wenatchee, Washington. Owned and operated by the Mathison family, Stemilt is the leading shipper of sweet cherries and one of the nation’s largest suppliers of organic tree fruits. Stemilt has also demonstrated a commitment to sustainable agriculture and social responsibility since 1989, when founder Tom Mathison launched the company’s Responsible Choice program. For more information about Stemilt, visit www.stemilt.com and follow Stemilt on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and You Tube.