“A lot more retailers are getting into organics, and they’re bringing more into their produce departments.”
Muzyk agreed demand remains strong.
In 2008, many consumers wouldn’t pay $5 for two organic tomatoes when they could purchase five conventional ones for $2, he said.
The category has rebounded considerably since taking a dip with the 2008 recession, Muzyk said.
“Organics have been and are always driven at the retail level,” Muzyk said. “For whatever reason, the consumer pushing that cart down the aisle believes it’s a healthier product. It has bounced back and is getting even stronger.”
Bruce Klein, director of marketing for Maurice A. Auerbach Inc., Secaucus N.J., said organic garlic is experiencing strong retail demand.
“The people that do look for it are willing to pay a little extra for certified organic product,” he said.
Auerbach’s peeled organic garlic is seeing strong sales as well as its 6-ounce vacuum packed bags that it has sold for years but only recently began seeing bigger movement, Klein said.
A.J. Trucco Inc., New York, distributes organic kiwifruit from Italy and New Zealand throughout the East Coast.
The importer is expanding the program to Chilean fruit, said Nick Pacia, co-owner and vice president.