A new study from the Mission Viejo, Calif.-based Hass Avocado Board has revealed a changing avocado marketplace, thanks to wider availability of fruit in a growing number of retail channels.
HAB’s new Avocado Category Channel Overview, and its companion piece, the Avocado Channel Action Guide, reveal how the category is shifting across channels and how changing household avocado purchase patterns are contributing to these shifts, according to a news release.
The convergence of two major trends — the rise of the fresh perimeter and cross-channel shopping — are fueling the trend, according to the release.
As an example, in 2016, despite competition from the emerging channels, 73% of avocado purchases, in dollars, were still made in traditional grocery brick-and-mortar stores. However, the study also found many households are shopping for avocados in more than one channel, giving them the opportunity to compare experiences and product offerings.
“As consumer demand for this versatile, healthy fruit continues to climb, we’re seeing that avocados are maintaining their prominent role in traditional retail food outlets, as well as gaining a presence in channels that are emerging as sources for fresh produce,” Emiliano Escobedo, executive director of the Hass Avocado Board, said in the release. “This new analysis uncovers specific purchase patterns in each channel that retailers and marketers can focus on to drive avocado category growth.”
Online sales and “dollar” stores are relative newcomers as purveyors of fresh produce. While individual retailer results may have varied, when aggregated at the channel level, 2016 was not a strong year for avocado purchases in these channels.
Grocery, the largest channel for avocado purchases, showed gains, with new avocado shoppers in 2016 and posting an increase in both repeat buys and frequency of avocado trips. However, a 2.5% decline in avocado spend per trip appears to have contributed to lower overall category purchases and a purchase share loss to the large format outlets such as club, mass merchandisers and supercenters.
More about avocado purchase patterns in each channel is at https://www.hassavocadoboard.com/retail/market-basket-shopper-trends.