Pear category shift with branded pouch bag programs

The first pear category Stemilt-O-Graphic of the new crop year was released today and shows significant growth in bags year-over-year. Stemilt’s analysis of the latest set of retail scan data from Nielsen Perishables Group revealed the percent bags contributed to the pear category in October grew from 5.9% in 2014 to 6.9% in 2015, with dollars from bags also on the rise. According to Stemilt marketing director Roger Pepperl, this growth comes from a continuation of great branded pouch bag programs that drive up the average purchase size while simultaneously promoting intended use to shoppers.

“Branded pouch bag programs are making a positive impact on the pear category,” said Pepperl. “Stemilt was the first in the industry to introduce pouch bag pears with our Lil Snappers® line of 3lb. pouch bags. Lil Snappers perform well because its branding is aimed at parents and kids, the ideal audience for the smaller sized fruit found inside. The 3lb. size is proven to build volume for the category by not diminishing purchase size,” Pepperl said.
Bartlett was the leading pear variety for the category in October with 63% of sales. Bosc and d’Anjou rounded out the top three varieties with a combined 25% of sales. This will shift in the coming months as the Bartlett pear season wraps up and is replaced by d’Anjou, a popular winter pear variety that needs time in cold storage following harvest for a great consumer eating experience and is not readily available in October.
The pear category contributed fewer dollars to the total produce category in October 2015 (1%) than in 2014 (1.2%). Pepperl advises retailers to dedicate extra shelf space and promotion to pears in the coming months, and especially during the holidays, in order to reverse this trend.
“Pears are an ideal fruit to promote in the produce department during the holidays,” said Pepperl. “Retailers can merchandise bulk pears alongside cheese or wine. Promoting the use of pears in appetizers and even baked dishes encourages shoppers to place this gourmet fruit in their shopping baskets.”
With a range of sizes available on pears this year, retailers should run duel promotions on bulk and premium pouch bags. Lil Snappers® kid-sized pears are ideal for January promotions with kids heading back to school.
“The premium quality and size profile makes Lil Snappers a popular item for parents to pick up and use when packing kid lunches. Lil Snappers is the leading pouch bag for pears because of its great ability to promote intended use right on the package, leading to volume and sales growth for the entire pear category,”

For more information:
Brianna Shales
Stemilt Growers

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