Average crop of California avocados anticipated for 2021

Looking ahead to 2021, the California Avocado Commission (CAC) is predicting a slightly smaller California crop.

Photo: California Avocado Commission

The Commission notes that its preliminary handler forecast for CAC’s fiscal year 2020-21, which runs from November through October, is for 317 million pounds of California avocados. “This is in the range of an “average” crop and is about 15 percent smaller than last year,” says Jan DeLyser, vice-president of marketing for the Irvine, CA-based CAC.

However, she notes the overall supply of avocados in the U.S. from all sources is projected to be larger in 2021 than 2020. “There is plenty of consumer demand for avocados to continue to grow the category, but it will be very important for there to be an orderly flow of supply from all sources,” adds DeLyser. Generally, other supplying countries include most significantly Mexico, but also Peru, Colombia, Chile and more.

In terms of challenges for 2021, COVID-19 remains at the top of the list. “We anticipate that restrictions on out-of-home dining will impact foodservice demand into 2021,” says DeLyser. That means consumers will continue to cook and prepare food at home as they have for much of 2020.

Photo: California Avocado Commission 

Consumer trends continuing 
At the same time, consumers this year have been increasingly interested in eating healthy. “In our 2020 California Avocado Tracking Study, 84 percent of avocado shoppers in the west reported purchasing the same or more avocados than prior to the pandemic. Of those who say they are buying more, the top two reasons are that they believe avocados are healthy/they want to eat as healthy as possible, and avocados are satisfying,” says DeLyser. Other findings that came out of that study include consumer preference for California avocados (two-thirds of avocado shoppers in the west reported that if given a choice, this was their preference).

Photo: California Avocado Commission 

Meanwhile, in April 2020, shortly after the pandemic significantly hit North America, CAC amended its marketing plans by shifting much of its outdoor advertising buy to streaming video and digital communication as well as other digital initiatives including digital chef programs and recipe communications. “The Commission’s marketing plans will focus on marketing that reaches consumers where they are, which for now is still mainly at home,” says DeLyser. Other marketing plans including connecting with consumers on social media, working with brand advocates and more.

For more information:
Marji Morrow
California Avocado Commission
Tel: +1 (323) 456-6751

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