Fresh produce sales up again for second quarter of 2013

Higher retail prices supported increase in fruit and vegetable sales while volume of sales actually dropped.

For the second quarter this year, fresh produce sales are up compared to last year’s figures. Organic fruits and vegetables lead the pack in growth with strong gains in sales and volume according to FreshFacts on Retail, a quarterly report from the United Fresh Produce Association which tracks retail produce sales and performance.

Fruits and vegetables saw gains in sales this quarter, driven by strong increases in retail prices. Fruits posted the strongest growth in sales and retail prices, exceeding 2012 figures by 4.4% and 7.8%, respectively, but posted a 3.2% decline in volume sales.

The FreshFacts on Retail report, produced in partnership with the Nielsen Perishables Group and sponsored by Del Monte Fresh Produce, measures retail price and sales trends for the top 10 fruit and vegetable commodities, as well as value-added, organic and other produce categories.

Specifically the report notes that eight of the top 10 fruits posted increases in dollar sales, driven in most cases by increases in retail prices.

Apples dominated the fruit commodities in dollar growth with an increase of 18.0% in sales and 13.7% in retail prices, while volume sales increased nearly 4%.

Seven of the top 10 vegetables were up in dollar sales this quarter, buoyed in many cases by increases to retail prices. Onions posted the strongest increases among the top 10 vegetables, exceeding last year’s figures by 8.3% in sales and 10.4% in retail prices, but volume declined 1.9% compared to the second quarter in 2012.

Value-added fruits increased average weekly dollar sales 3.9% and value-added vegetables posted dollar gains of up 7.4%. Despite the price increase, value-added vegetables posted volume growth near 10%.

Organic fruits and vegetables show strong growth this quarter, with increases in dollar sales of 34.9% and 16.2%, respectively.

Each FreshFacts report also features a Quarterly Spotlight on an industry segment or notable trend. This quarter, an investigation of product branding within produce departments provides insight into shifts in the number of unbranded, branded and private label products. Recent trends show that the presence of branded products and private labels is growing within produce departments.


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