Fresh apple displays help drive sales

Apple display bins help sell apples by highlighting certain varieties. These bins can become even more effective when placed in a secondary location outside of the produce section, marketers say.

Secondary displays are also effective for marketing more varieties and trendier apple


Howard Nager, vice president of marketing for Domex Superfresh Growers, Yakima, Wash., suggests using secondary displays or bins to add additional apple varieties to a store"s selection, rather than taking away space from the other varieties on the main display.

"There are many new varieties that are now available and can be merchandised on secondary displays or side tables but should not take away space from the mainline varieties," he said.

Suzanne Wolter, director of marketing for Rainier Fruit Co., Selah, Wash., said merchandising bins are popular with retail partners.

"These bins offer a secondary location in the department to feature new varieties such as Lady Alice, showcase the portability and nutritional value of apples in general and create highly visible, creative displays within or outside the produce department," Wolter said.

She suggests using these bins in the deli area of the store if possible, or with yogurt.

Priority areas near the register are also helpful.

"It can even be placed by the checkout stand. You see candy displays up there all the time and every now and then maybe something else, but it can be an impulse item for consumers if it"s right there in from of them," Wolter said.

However, placing a bin in this location does require commitment, since produce department staff has to monitor it to keep it stocked and fresh.

Superfresh offers full- and half-size bins, as well as sleeve merchandising bins for incremental and waterfall displays, Nager said.

The company also offers bilingual tote bags, posters and charts for retailers to use.

"We"re always trying to come up with something that captures consumers" attention at retail," said Don Armock, partner and president of Riveridge Produce Inc., Sparta, Mich.

However, those unique ideas only stay fresh for as long as they stand out from the crowd.

"After a bit, they just become more of the same when everyone catches on and starts doing them," Armock said.

Shippers continue to offer new packaging and display options for retail.

"We"ve been doing some punch bags and drawstring bags that stand up, things that look different," he said.

Standing out is also important for specialty items such as fresh-cut apples.

"Ideally, grocery supermarkets would create a destination category that groups all items, and complementary items together in a well-signed location," said Tony Freytag, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Crunch Pak, Cashmere, Wash.

Freytag said displays are extremely important.

"Displays drive sales. Retailers should maintain an assortment of different package sizes and adjust according to shopper consumer demographics," Freytag said.

He also suggests increasing the display size or adding a secondary display to attract shoppers and cover volume needs during promotional periods, such as back-to-school.



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