Where retail sales of garlic and herb are concerned, where is almost as important as what, suppliers say.
Positioning of a product in a retail produce department matters, said Camilo Penalosa, Everett, Mass.-based partner in Infinite Herbs & Specialties, which has its main office in Miami.
“I think that one of the things is I recommend putting the herbs in places where the supermarket is visual and everybody walks by them,” Penalosa said.
Christopher RanchWhere garlic and herbs are displayed in stores matters, suppliers say. Garlic has an advantage over herbs, because it is used in dishes by all nationalities, said Louis Hymel purchasing and marketing director with Orlando, Fla.-based Spice World Inc. That sentiment probably applies to all produce, but particularly for herbs, which often aren’t a top-of-mind item with a lot of consumers, Penalosa said.
“In a minor category, putting it in high-vision place, sales will increase,” he said.
Shoppers will look for items like spinach and lettuce — even garlic — while they’re in a store. Not so, with herbs, he said.
Category managers who keep that in mind will reap rewards in higher sales, across the produce category, Penalosa said.
“It will tell the supermarket and its clientele that store has great variety,” he said.
Garlic has an advantage over other items, said Louis Hymel purchasing and marketing director with Orlando, Fla.-based Spice World Inc.
“The demand for garlic items is always strong because it’s a main ingredient among many nationalities and used by all nationalities,” he said.
It’s also a good idea to stay creative in showcasing the product, Hymel said.
“Good merchandising is crucial for increasing sales and incremental items driven by extensive cross-merchandising,” he said. “It’s a great item for selling more items and boosting profits in all grocery departments — not just the produce department.”
Gilroy, Calif.-based garlic grower-shipper Christopher Ranch has found that garlic is a “natural” for promotions several times a year, said Patsy Ross, vice president of marketing.
“Harvest (summer months) is a natural due to the good availability and freshness of the crop. Halloween is fun time to promote garlic to play off of the vampire/garlic humor, and the holidays or winter is a good time to promote fresh garlic for use in comfort food cooking,” she said.
Numerous promotional strategies work at retail, said Robert Schueller, director of public relations for Los Angeles-based World Variety Produce Inc., which markets the Melissa’s brand.
“Highlight category before major holidays and events in ads, merchandising in the proper location of store, handling and display of product at eye level,” he said.