Most avocado category growth in 2016 did not come from the shoppers most fascinated with the fruit, according to a Hass Avocado Board report.
About 25% of avocado consumers generate about 75% of category sales, but that “super heavy” segment only accounted for 4% of year-over-year growth. The board defines super heavy households as those that spend more than $25.36 on the fruit annually, though the average annual spend in the group is $66.38.
The “medium” shopper segment — people spending $3.69-9.77 on avocados each year — was responsible for 45.7% of incremental sales in 2016.
The “heavy” shopper group — folks dishing out $9.78-25.35 for the fruit annually — contributed 38.4% of the growth.
Medium and heavy households accounted for $7.9 million in incremental sales.
In total, 24.8% of avocado sales in 2016 were made to those two groups.
Walmart, club stores and mass merchandisers all drew more heavy shoppers in 2016, each increasing that segment at least 4%.
That segment accounted for $2.6 million in sales growth for Walmart and $4 million for club stores, which saw the number of heavy shoppers in the channel grow 13.5%.
The dollar sales increase for avocados at mass merchandisers was more modest, but that channel saw avocado buying trips by heavy shoppers increase a whopping 16.2%.
In the grocery channel, heavy shoppers purchased $2.7 million less in than they did in 2016. Trips were also down 1.9%.
Walmart and club stores saw the most growth in number of medium shoppers, with 6.5% and 8.7%, respectively.
Incremental purchases from this group at Walmart totaled $1.9 million, and the grocery channel was not far behind at $1.7 million, apparently boosted by a 2.1% gain in the number of medium shoppers.
Grocery is by far the biggest retail channel for avocados, with about $1 billion in sales in 2016, followed by Walmart at $176 million and club stores at $141 million.