Mangoes hit their peak season at the same time local berries, citrus, and stone fruits are all competing for retail space.
“The most difficult thing of what we do is that the mango crop peaks at the same time every year, in June and July, when it’s a tough thing to get retailers to promote as there are so many different options available at that time of year,” said Chris Ciruli, chief executive officer of Ciruli Bros. LLC, Nogales, Ariz.
“The fact that nearly every other fruit hits its peak in the summer makes mangoes a challenging crop,” Ciruli said.
Others agree that getting shelf space is especially important at this time of year.
“The peak season is June and July. There are more mangoes sold then than any other months combined, so it’s important we have the shelf space for displays,” said Ken Nabal, president of Kingston Fresh, Idaho Falls, Idaho.
Suppliers want to encourage retailers to use this peak mango season as the prime time for promotions.
“We urge people to promote as much as possible now through July,” said Shannon Barthel, marketing director, Central American Produce Inc., Pompano Beach, Fla.
Barthel said these promotions offer opportunities for profit for retailers.
“It’s been proven repeatedly over the last few years that this is a value-driver for retailers, and demand continues to increase,” she said.
Price promotions are especially popular during this peak season, according to suppliers. Supplies are strong enough to allow for a lower retail price, offering value to consumers.
“Nearly two-thirds of all print promotions advertise multiples like two for $3 or 10 for $10 and although most ads are unspecified when a variety is mentioned it’s usually ataulfo or champagne or a red variety,” Drew Schwartzhoff, director of marketing sourcing, C.H. Robinson, Eden Prairie, Minn., said in an e-mail.
Nabal agrees that pricing is important.
“What sells mangoes is quality and the retail price point,” he said, mentioning that consumers simply won’t buy the product if the price point is too high.
“Having good quality at that price point is what drives extra movement,” he said.