Pomegranates: business updates - The Packer

Pomegranates: business updates

09/19/2013 11:59:00 AM
Melissa Shipman

Courtesy Getty images by Denise TruscelloPOM Wonderful launches three new 100% juice blends. Crown Jewels featured on Discovery Channel

Fresno, Calif.-based Crown Jewels and its pomegranate grower, Steve Barsoom, were spotlighted on the Discovery Channel‘s “American Farmer” program in December.

The program has since aired multiple times and exposed the company’s pomegranate business to the world.

“It really opened people’s eyes and we’ve gotten a lot of e-mails wanting more information on the pomegranate program,” said Atomic Torosian, managing partner.

The program also featured Crown Jewels’ grape, melon, apple and pear growers.

DJ Forry rebrands, revamps aril product

Starting this year, DJ Forry changed the packaging on its aril product to consist of two sealed servings inside each package.

“It’s a 4.4-ounce punnet with a divider so there are two separate servings,” said Ray England, vice president of marketing for the Reedley, Calif.-based company.

England said the new packaging was a rebranding effort.

“We’ve been selling arils under the Sweet Diamond brand for three years, but this year in May we went through a rebranding effort with DJ Forry and we changed the packaging from Sweet Diamond to Sweet Bursts,” England said.

The company has seen an increase in demand for the aril products.

“We saw a lift of about 30% with our existing customers on the offshore side,” said John Forry, vice president.

Dream Foods rolls out organic grenadine

Dream Foods International LLC, Santa Monica, Calif., released its Volcano Grenadine Burst product in August as a healthy, organic alternative to existing grenadine products.

The 3.4-ounce squeeze bottle contains no high fructose corn syrup and uses elderberry for color and citric acid as a preservative.

It is also U.S. Department of Agriculture-certified organic.

“A lot of grenadine products have that high fructose sweetness but this product is rich without being too sweet so you really experience that elderberry and pomegranate flavor,” said Harry Merzian, marketing and sales manager.

Sold in the produce department, the product is shelf-stable.

Merzian said the product will increase produce department profitability because it’s difficult to find organic grenadine products.

“If they already have a conventional grenadine, this will grow the category, but if not, they’ll be one of the first to carry that organic grenadine product,” he said.

Pom Wonderful promotes juice blends

Pom Wonderful celebrated the launch of its three 100% juice blends with an official party and a Guinness world record for the “longest consecutive airborne inflatable beach ball relay,” according to Marc Seguin, vice president of marketing for Los Angeles-based Pom Wonderful.

The event, Aug. 29 in Las Vegas, was held to help launch the company’s Pom Hula, Pom Coconut and Pom Mango juice blends, which hit the market in June.

It was featured on “Good Morning America,” and Seguin said it was very successful.

“How often do they talk about produce companies on ‘Good Morning America?’” he said.

The company launched the juice blends to complement its pure pomegranate juice, according to a news release.

Ruby Fresh adds items, plans Web update

Firebaugh, Calif.-based Ruby Fresh Pomegranates has developed two aril products recently, single-serving sizes of its Salad Jewels salad topping line and a single-serving product for kids, said David Anthony, salesman.

“We had a lot of requests from school lunch programs for arils,” he said.

The company designed a 4-ounce cup with a shaker lid so students can eat pomegranate arils easily, without the need for a spoon.

Ruby Fresh plans to introduce the item at the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit 2013, Oct. 18-20 in New Orleans, Anthony said.

The single-serve Salad Jewels line should be available Oct. 1, he said.

The company also introduced a four-count clamshell for its whole pomegranates this season, Anthony said.

The company is also working on a revamp of its website, Anthony said.



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