First quarter shows hint of retail challenges ahead

06/26/2009 02:27:44 PM
Tom Karst

Deflation and trading down?

Inflation — including higher energy and transportation costs — caused total produce department dollars to rise moderately in 2008, but the first-quarter report said retailers will face challenges because they can’t rely on higher prices in 2009 to boost sales.

“What it looked like was going on throughout Q3 and Q4 was that retailers were taking price increases as a way to offset volume losses, so they were basically maintaining their dollars on a dwindling foundation of volume,”  Lutz said.

Fresh Facts on Retail – First Quarter 2009
First quarter 2009 retail Percent change for the first quarter of 2009 compared to the first quarter of 2008.

All produce
Dollar sales per store: -1.4%
Volume per store: -3%
Average retail price: 1.7%

Vegetables
Dollar sales per store: -1.4%
Volume per store: -3%
Average retail price: 1.7%

Fruits
Dollar sales per store: -1.4%
Volume per store: -2.8%
Average retail price: 1.5%

Top fruits
Berries
Dollar sales per store: 13.4%
Volume per store: 20.2%
Average retail price: -5.6%

Citrus
Dollar sales per store: -6.9%
Volume per store: -12.3%
Average retail price: 6.2%

Apples
Dollar sales per store: -8.5%
Volume per store: -4.9%
Average retail price: -3.8%

Bananas
Dollar sales per store: 10.2%
Volume per store: -2.8%
Average retail price: 13.4%

Grapes
Dollar sales per store: 1.6%
Volume per store: 20.2%
Average retail price: -15.5%

Top vegetables
Packaged salad
Dollar sales per store: -4.7%
Volume per store: -7.5%
Average retail price: 3%

Potatoes
Dollar sales per store: 11.8%
Volume per store: -2%
Average retail price: 14.1%

Tomatoes
Dollar sales per store: -14.1%
Volume per store: -3.1%
Average retail price: -11.4%

Cooking vegetables
Dollar sales per store: -3.2%
Volume per store: -2.9%
Average retail price: -0.4%

Onions
Dollar sales per store: 0.5%
Volume per store: -1.0%
Average retail price: 1.4%



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