PALM SPRINGS — The National Mango Board has hired Meg Buchsbaum, formerly the national produce merchandiser for C&S Wholesale Grocers, as its retail account manager for the East Coast.
In that role, Buchsbaum will be meeting with East Coast retailers and working with them on promotions and ways to increase their mango sales, along with providing information about the different varieties and opportunities throughout the year.
Angela Serna, marketing manager for the National Mango Board, said Buchsbaum not only has extensive knowledge of supply chain, temperature management and promotions, but she also understands what the pain points are for buyers that need to be addressed.
“She really brings really amazing perspective (in) that she has worked through these different promotions, she has worked with boards like us in the past, so I think it’s really valuable experience that she brings to the table,” Serna said.
Buchsbaum had been with C&S since 2013, leading a team charged with providing support to thousands of independent retailers, from helping write ads to making store visits and advising on ways to increase sales. Before that, Buchsbaum worked in purchasing for Whole Foods for six years, and her previous background was as a chef and food stylist.
“At my old position, being the national produce merchandiser, I’d worked with the mango board before for my 2,700 independent customers across the country, helping them increase their mango knowledge, helping them increase their sales of course, whether it was through (point-of-sale) material, education, them understanding the ripening process, the storage process, they always do a great job with the contest every year, so it gives them an opportunity to do different showcases throughout the stores, so that was my knowledge going into it,” Buchsbaum said.
“Now that I’ve been there for just a short period of time, (I’m) really understanding that there’s so much more — the educational part, partnering with the (retail dietitians) throughout the country, the foodservice part, just understanding the different growing regions, the varieties, and truly how important it is to handle it correctly," Buchsbaum said.
One element of mangoes that Buchsbaum emphasizes is their versatility and the fresh-cut opportunities with the fruit. As mangoes start to get toward the end of their shelf life, they can be used on a fruit platter, in a parfait or a mango salsa, or for a smoothie or juice bar, she recommended.
“There really shouldn’t be shrink on a mango because there’s so many applications,” Buchsbaum said.
Using products in different ways is second nature to Buchsbaum given her culinary background, so she aims to share that with the stores with which she works.
Buchsbaum was recognized as one of The Packer’s Women in Produce last year.