Sunkist's Year of the Rat boxes for Lunar New Year. ( Ashley Nickle )

Produce suppliers around the country have plans to help retailers grow sales through special packaging, consumer education and point-of-sale material.

Castroville, Calif.-based Ocean Mist Farms will be running a consumer sweepstakes themed around Friendsgiving gatherings Nov. 1-22.

“We’re going to focus on our Season & Steam product line, which is going to be Brussels sprouts, artichokes and sweet baby broccoli, so these are key items that are relevant for this key eating holiday of November,” said senior director of marketing Diana McClean.

The sweepstakes, which consumers can enter and then opt in to receive marketing emails from Ocean Mist, helps the company gather information about what shoppers are looking for and then design cooking tips, recipes and other information that is relevant for those consumers.

Nick Dulcich, president of sales and CEO of Delano, Calif.-based Sunlight International Sales, said at the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit that the company has holiday bags for its Pretty Lady grapes, including options with a Christmas theme.

Eden Prairie, Minn.-based Robinson Fresh is offering insight on which items retailers need to carry for the holidays if they want to increase loyalty among their Hispanic shoppers.

The company recently released research focused on that demographic and found there are key products those consumers look for leading up to Christmas and tamale season.

“The thing that Hispanic shoppers say are critically important for them to have in a store for them to stay in-store and shop it are corn husks and banana leaves,” said Gina Garven, vice president of commercial development and analytics. 

“These are really important things to have. A retailer doesn’t need to have them year-round necessarily, but to have it from mid-October through mid-January, that’s really important for the Hispanic shopper.”

The National Mango Board is looking to raise awareness about mangoes for the holiday season by partnering with Fexy Media on shoppable recipes for food sites Serious Eats and Simply Recipes, which receive a combined 20 million visits monthly, according to a news release. 

The board also has holiday-themed point-of-sale material available, including colorful cards with recipes for mango yams with almonds, mango cranberry sauce and mango peanut crisp.

Los Angeles-based The Wonderful Co. has a new holiday-themed bin to promote its pistachios. The red and green bins feature an elf holding a pack of the snack nuts.

“The creative was designed to put consumers in the holiday mindset and capture their attention in the produce section,” the company wrote in a news release. 

“The elf creative will be available for Wonderful Pistachios (one-quarter) pallet bins and pop-up bins, giving retailers the flexibility to have several bins on the floor in different locations in the store.”

More elements of the Wonderful holiday marketing campaign — including TV commercials — will be announced later.

Valencia, Calif.-based Sunkist Growers displayed at Fresh Summit its new limited-edition Lunar New Year boxes for Year of the Rat.

Christina Ward, director of global brand marketing, said winter is a big period for citrus in part because of the abundance of supply and the range of varieties available.

“With obviously mandarins coming online in November, with navel oranges being available, and then getting into that part of the season where we’ll have blood oranges and cara cara navel oranges, and all the other things that will be coming thereafter, there’s just a lot of different ways for people to get creative with their holiday meals, and so we like to develop recipes and collaborate with chefs to be able to tell that story of that particular citrus variety,” Ward said.


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