A threatening decline in the value of Australia’s most heavily grown apple ‘variety’ may have been circumvented this week with the launch of a 6-week Pink Lady pilot in select Coles stores, commencing today (Wednesday, November 6 2019).
Led by APAL, the pilot will, for the first time, deploy the International Pink Lady system in Australia. Using the globally recognised ‘flowing heart’ logo, and strict quality standards to ensure consistency of taste, texture and appearance, the new pre-pack concept aims to differentiate premium Pink Lady apples from every day, loose Pink Lady apples in the domestic market.
The pilot is the result of months of planning by APAL, alongside retail partner Coles, and supply partners Montague, Orora and Bluprint Merchandising, to lift overall industry value, by increasing the worth of a share of Australia’s largest apple crop.
“Our objective is to switch a section of Australian consumers from loose Pink Lady apples, to a premium offering,” says Craig Chester, APAL’s Head of Group Brands & Regional Manager SE Asia & Americas. A consistently higher quality apple, conveniently packed and supported at retail level should provide stronger than average returns per bin for growers, while providing consumers with a quality-seal guarantee.”
Sub-branded John’s Pick™ , the apple six-pack will retail for $6.00, and will be initially trialled in 41 Coles stores across Victoria & NSW.
Required to meet the strict Pink Lady brand international quality standards, apples selected for John’s Pick™ will need to meet specifications for colour, eating quality (brix and firmness) – attributes, which along with its unique flavour, define the characteristics of the Pink Lady apple brand and help maintain a consistently better eating experience.
Successful performance of the pilot, along with support from industry, will see distribution expanded for season 2020.
As the industry’s representative body, APAL has committed that any returns created through the sale of this product will be injected straight back into supporting the brand in Australia.
Handy for storing straight in the fridge, the eye-catching recyclable packaging brings to life the story of John Cripps, the Australian breeder of the Cripps Pink variety which accounts for a third of Australian grown apples.
“We are hoping to create a sense of provenance,” says APAL CEO, Phil Turnbull, of the pilot’s nod towards the apple’s local origins.”
Initiated by industry, the pilot is a key initiative to avoid the ‘brand’ becoming commoditised and losing value in Australia. By contrast, the Pink Lady brand has continued to grow market share in the UK whilst maintaining high value year-on-year.
“Growers are under pressure right now,” says Phil, “Australia produces some of the finest fruit in the world and our growers are among the most passionate.”
“Leveraging a valuable asset of Australian industry, the Pink Lady pre-pack not only provides consumers with consistent quality, but also opens export opportunities for growers,” says Phil.
The origin of the Pink Lady-branded apple is forever etched in Australia’s proud history of agricultural ingenuity. John Cripps from Manjimup in Western Australia grew the very first Cripps Pink apple and its subsequent development under the Pink Lady brand has delivered global success, which all Australians should be proud of.
John produced an apple with a beautiful sweet balanced taste, bright green/yellow background with a cover of vibrant pink blush, crisp and juicy texture with a distinctively clean finish, But what he did next is the part that created history…he picked the very best of those apples, and certified only those meeting the highest standards as worth of carrying the Pink Lady heart-shaped seal of approval.
When you buy one of these premium pre-packs, you purchase the apple that John wanted you to enjoy, one which is worthy of being labelled John’s Pick™.
As well as supporting the growth of Australian apple and pear growers, APAL licences over 200 importers and exporters globally, collecting royalties on kilos of Pink Lady traded and reinvesting this to grow the network, manage quality and protect the brand in over 100 countries worldwide.
For more information:
Tel: +61 3 9329 3511