Zac Benedict, online marketing director for the California Avocado Commission, Irvine, Calif., with David Cruz, business development director, and April Aymami, industry affairs director. The commission was concluding its celebation of its 40th anniversary at Fresh Summit.
( The Packer )

ANAHEIM, Calif. — A bigger California avocado crop in 2020 should lead for expanded promotions for the fruit across the U.S.

Though there are no official estimates, industry expectations point to a crop between 350 to 370 million pounds in 2020, up from about 215 million pounds in 2019.

California Avocado Commission officials believe the bigger crop will extend the season compared with this year and allow for broader promotion opportunities beyond California and the Western U.S.

The California avocado shipping season typically runs from early spring through late summer, but in 2020 it should start earlier and go longer because of the larger crop.

“We are looking forward to that and for building programs to help build anticipation for that,” said Jan DeLyser, vice president of marketing for the commission, Irvine, Calif.

“We’re still going to target select customers who want to participate and who really want the brand, but the (promotions) will go a little further,” she said.

The California Avocado Commission was a sponsor for the Produce for Better Health Foundation’s 2019 Education2Action Retail Dietitian program, and several groups of dietitians came to the commission’s Fresh Summit booth Oct. 19.

“They came around and we were able to educate them about avocados and the California avocado program and what we can do with them,” DeLyser said. “We are excited about that.”

DeLyser said avocado consumption seems certain to continue increasing in 2020, as demand this year was only limited by shorter supplies. While avocados are widely purchased in California, consumption of avocado has room to grow in many areas of the country.

“Everybody’s expecting a much bigger year next year, and the number three billion pounds is being talked about for the category for the first time,” she said. “If that happens, consumption is still going to keep going up.”

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