The California lemon season is well underway. The district 3 harvest has finished and currently the pickings are taking place in districts 1 and 2. John Chamberlain of Limoneira says: “As we move through the next couple of months, the picks will be lower in district 1 and become heavier in district 2. The overall volumes have been good so far.”
Evenly spread sizing this season
“The quality is looking good and a large percentage of the fruit is 115, 140, and 165. Last year we had a lot of larger fruit because of the rain situation, but this year the sizing is spread more evenly over mid-ranges,” Chamberlain says.
Limoneira works with many varieties, including organics. Chamberlain shares: “Our varieties such as our Pinks, Meyers and seedless lemons have experienced good demand lately.”
Take A Healthy Stand™ educational program
In the summer of 2019, Limoneira launched on an educational program called Take A Healthy Stand™ whose simple message is supported by research done by, among others, the Institute of National Health. The program revolves around helping the consumer incorporate healthy foods, such as lemons, into their diets with more ease.
Chamberlain says: “Three-fourths of U.S. consumers believe healthy foods and beverages can be used to increase the quality of their lives. In addition, more than a quarter of Americans believe functional foods and beverages can be used in place of some medicines. It may not be surprising, then, that a majority of consumers would use foods and beverages to prevent and treat many health conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure, lack of energy, intestinal irregularity and even cancer.” The program aims at making it easier for consumers to use foods for specific health benefits.
Program incorporates new app
Elements of the program include promotional stands and bags, in-store signage and social media marketing. In addition, there are promotional videos with Megan Roosevelt, RDN and spokesperson for the program, as well as content from Limoneira’s global opinion leaders and influencers. Finally, a big part of the program is an app released by Limoneira, called Nature’s Pharmacy™.
Chamberlain says: “A component of Take a Healthy Stand ™ is our new app-Nature's Pharmacy™, which shows consumers that much of what they need can easily, and inexpensively, be found in the produce aisle. The app helps consumers easily identify fruits and vegetables in grocery stores that can help solve healthcare issues they may be wrestling with.”
“Limoneira cross-tabulated 57 health concerns including the need to increase good cholesterol, prevent cardiovascular disease or ease insomnia, as well as desired outcomes, including improving energy levels or reducing wrinkles, with 74 fruits and vegetables. All of these foods, which can be found in the produce section of most grocery stores, contain 12 essential vitamins and 11 essential minerals that address these concerns or help with desired outcomes. By selecting a concern or outcome, the app then generates foods in the produce aisle that can help consumers achieve their health goals,” Chamberlain concludes.