It has been two years since these Alsatian farmers offered their apple juice to the brand “C’est qui le patron?!” [Who’s the boss?!], after the success of their milk.
It was indeed after noting the success of the milk “C’est qui le patron?!” that some apple growers suggested to the brand to do the same with apple juice. The concept of the brand is to let the consumers set the charter and price of the product. They voted the price at 0.19 euro/kg [0.10 USD/lb], which is about double the market price for apple juices (second-choice apples, not nice enough to be sold whole).
According to Patrick Vogel, president of the CUMA (Cooperative for the Use of Agricultural Equipment) of Brumath and owner of an 11-hectare eco-responsible orchard in Kriegsheim, this doubles the pay. The juice is selling more and more, even with apples bought at twice the price. 724,555 cartons of “C’est qui le patron?!” apple juice were sold during the first year (April 2017 to March 2018) and the sales even exceeded 1 million this year, with 1,040,232 cartons between April 2018 and March 2019, despite a stock shortage in the summer of 2018. This year, the juice sold even better than some of the sector’s big brands. “These are second-choice apples (first-choice apples are sold between 0.50 €/kg and 1 €/kg [0.25 USD/lb and 0.51 USD/lb], 0.22€/kg [0.11 USD/lb] would be better to cover the costs, but 0.19 €/kg [0.10 USD/lb] is already much better than 0.08 €/kg [0.04 USD/lb]. It gives some value to the apples that would otherwise be left under the tree,” explains the Alsatian farmer whose main revenue comes from his inn, and not his farm.
“It is one of the products that brings us the most positive feedback on quality. The clients love it and let us know it. The initiative has been so successful that other distributors have joined. Sales are increasing with an acceleration and 43% more sales in the second year,” declares Nicolas Chabanne, founder of the brand.
Nine retail groups now offer the apple juice, while two years ago, only one did. An App was recently created so that the client himself can solicit potential distributors. Indeed, the brand has no sales representatives; it is therefore up to the consumers to approach the stores.