Spring into strawberry season

03/01/2013 04:03:00 PM
Tom Burfield

“We’ve gone to what the consumers prefer,” he says, which is mostly the 1-pound clamshell container.

The store uses point-of-purchase materials when they’re available, often indicating the origin of the berries, brand name or pointing consumers to recipes.

Miller says he hasn’t put much emphasis on the health benefits of strawberries.

“We probably haven’t done as much as we need to on that,” he says.

Consumers tend to buy berries because “they’re a treat” rather than because of their nutrition content, he says.

Weber’s also features organic berries in the store’s organic section.

“There are people who are committed to the organic lifestyle who make that choice all the time,” he says.

 

Steady sales

Strawberry sales have been “steady” at Piggly Wiggly Markets, Dippel says, with the 1-pound clamshell the package of choice, but the chain features 2- and 4-pounders on occasion.

The cost per tray generally doesn’t vary, Dippel says, whether it contains eight 1-pounders, four 2-pounders or two 4-pounders.

The chain offers organic strawberries most of the time, as long as the quality and price are right, he says.

The stores cross merchandise strawberries with shortcakes, glazes and smoothie mixes.

“They help sell the berries,” Dippel says.

Albert E. Lees offers 1-pound containers exclusively but sometimes offers stem berries for such holidays as Valentine’s Day and the Fourth of July.

Cummings cross-merchandises strawberries with shortcake shells and sometimes with buttermilk biscuits from the bakery and in the cereal aisle.

He sometimes uses POP materials.

“We don’t get as much as we used to,” he says. “If it’s nice and colorful and we can use it in the display, we use it.”

He says he sometimes promotes the health benefits of strawberries when he sets up a large display.


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