The Packer’s Tom Karst on May 15 with Manuel Michel, executive director of the National Mango Board about the group’s latest initiative to honor “Retail Super Fruit Super Heroes” and other mango industry issues.
Michel said the effect of COVID-19 on the mango industry was felt immediately with panic buying then consumer adjustments in their shopping trips that lowered demand.
“We had Cinco de Mayo coming up and we were able to generate additional demand and get back into some of the retail stores,” he said. “Going into Cinco de Mayo and Mother’s Day, we did see an increase in demand and right now over the last couple of weeks, demand has maintained about the same level.”
Michel said one long-term goal for the mango to ascend the rankings of America’s most popular fruits. Right now, mangoes are ranked No. 12/13 of most-consumed fruits.
“We think that we can get to that top 10 spot here in the next five years, and so that’s a goal that all of us are working together to try to reach," he said.
With the absence of face-to-face meetings and trade shows, Michel said the mango board is ramping up video outreach to buyers.