Necessity and a lower price point motivated the move, said Julia Inestroza, marketing director for Los Angeles-based Gourmet Trading.
“You cannot physically fit the standard 11 ounces of SuperBlues into a traditional regular blueberry pint container,” she said. “That’s why we went to 10 ounces.”
Berries packed under the SuperBlues label are 19 millimeters and up. The modified pack sizes are 5, 10 and 16 ounces, sold in units of 12. Gourmet Trading’s regular blueberries come in 4.4, 6, 18, 24 and 32 ounces.
The change targets the price gap between traditional berries and the premium SuperBlues.
“With the reduced size, the price difference comes down to 15 to 25 cents per clamshell (on 5 ounces),” Inestroza said.
“It looks like we’ll have really good-sized fruit this season,” she said. “Hopefully we can get retailers to carry both the regular and the SuperBlues. It’s adding SKUs to the shelf but giving consumers a lot more choices. Some don’t want 24 ounces but will go for a 16-ounce SuperBlues, which is much less expensive.”
Gourmet Trading is offering retailers point-of-sale materials to inform consumers.
“SuperBlues are larger, crunchy and stand up really well in savory dishes,” Inestroza said. “They’re great for salads and kids lunches, as a substitute for grapes. We’ve even seen people do a peanut butter and SuperBlues sandwich for kids.”