Promoting apples at the retail level is optimal all year, said Howard Nager, vice president of marketing for Domex Superfresh Growers, Yakima, Wash.

“Fall is a great time to promote apples when we have a new crop and the change in seasons signal to consumers that summer is over,” he said.

Nager suggests retailers promote around the company’s Apple-A-Rama, Fall Festival, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas promotions.

After New Year, stores can take advantage of resolutions to eat healthier and promote the health benefits of apples.

Back-to-school promotions are also helpful in the fall, said Kevin Steiner, marketing director and category manager for Sage Fruit Co. LLC, Yakima.

“We have some bags with kid-friendly graphics that are geared toward children,” he said.

Steiner said the company has good results with its NBC’s “Biggest Loser” themed bags in January.

“There’s a focus on healthy eating then, so we’ve seen a lot of success with the ‘Biggest Loser’ promotions,” he said.

Then, in February, Valentine’s Day promotions can take advantage of red apple varieties while St. Patrick’s day in March is a great time for green granny smith apples.

“In other words, apples can be promoted 12 months,” Nager said.

Suzanne Wolter, director of marketing for Rainier Fruit Co., Selah, Wash., said the strongest months for promotions are September through March.