World Variety Produce Inc., Los Angeles, which markets under the Melissa’s brand, promotes pineapples as part of its tropical line.
Melissa’s focuses on marketing South African Baby Pineapples and organic gold pineapples, though it can source conventional gold pineapples when needed, said Robert Schueller, director of public relations.
To increase sales of baby and organic varieties, Melissa’s emphasizes holiday periods and offers promotional pricing. South African Baby Pineapples and organic pineapples tend to sell best during spring and summer, but because they are available year-round, they can be promoted at any time, Schueller said.
The South African Baby Pineapple is a single-serve size, so it’s especially good for promoting in retail stores that cater to smaller households, Schueller said.
The baby pineapples often are cross-promoted with other tropical fruits or merchandised near displays of larger pineapples.
Chris Harris, director of sourcing category development, C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Eden Prairie, Minn., said cross-promotions are part of his company’s plans this year.
C.H. Robinson is gearing up for the Easter push and working with retailer customers on promotions. Its promotional programs are retailer-specific and might include promotional pricing or cross-merchandising.
One promotional opportunity this spring includes the use of a Tropicana Tropicals-brand gift bag as an incentive for consumers to purchase more pineapples, Harris said. Specific details have not yet been worked out, but promotions are expected to appear in time for Easter.
Tropicana Tropicals-brand pineapples are grown in Mexico. Robinson’s Rosemont Farms brand of pineapples are grown in Costa Rica.
Hazel Kelly, client promotions manager for Frieda’s Inc., Los Alamitos, Calif., said its Zululand Queen Baby Pineapples are good additions to tropical or standard pineapple displays. Frieda’s also recommends working with the floral department to incorporate baby pineapples and other specialty produce into floral centerpieces.
“(The centerpieces) can then be merchandised in produce or floral departments for the ‘wow’ factor,” Kelly said.
Pineapples from Mexico
Pineapple exporters in Mexico actively seek new distribution channels for their fruit, said Pablo Jiminez, marketing manager, Mexican Pineapple Exporters Association.
AMEP assists exporters by promoting Mexican pineapples via the internet, print media and in-store promotions, he said.