Progressive Grocer

SEP 2016

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Page 140 of 167

September 2016 | | 141 sumers can take the fruit home, enjoy it and come back to the store to purchase again." Stocking ripe pears in the produce department can boost sales by as much as 16 percent versus not carrying conditioned pears, according to Shales. "In a category that needs consistent movement, it's important to carry conditioned pears and message them as ready to eat to consumers," she notes. Variety and Pretty Packaging As consumers continue to look for new eating experi- ences, additional pear varieties are gaining traction. "e most known pears include the Bartlett, Anjou and Bosc pears, but red pears are earning some notoriety," observes Stephenson, who adds that red pears add an attractive color break to the category. For three years, the Pear Bureau Northwest has spon- sored the Pear Up with USA Pears retail display contest, with with colorful and creative results. Williamsville, N.Y.- colorful with colorful and creative results. Williamsville, N.Y.- and with colorful and creative results. Williamsville, N.Y.- creative with colorful and creative results. Williamsville, N.Y.- results. with colorful and creative results. Williamsville, N.Y.- Williamsville, N.Y.- based Tops Markets was ased based Tops Markets was Tops Markets was recognized for its striking ecognized recognized for its striking for its striking display display of Bosc, Starkrim- of Bosc, Starkrim- son son and Bartlett pears, and Bartlett pears, while while Mirbitos IGA, in Mirbitos IGA, in Hannibal, N.Y., created a winning Partridge in a Pear Pear Tree display. Tree display. Another trend for pears, adds adds Stephenson, is the Stephenson, is the proliferation proliferation of 2- to-5- of 2- to-5- pound bags and pouches. ound bags and pouches. "It is not uncommon for It "It is not uncommon for is not uncommon for our our best shoppers to buy best shoppers to buy as as many as 10 pears at a many as 10 pears at a time," time," she asserts. she asserts. Chelan Fresh has intro- duced duced 2-pound pouch bags 2-pound pouch bags of its Organic Bosc pears. It also offers Anjou and Bartlett pears in 3-pound bags. In addition to offering new Tosca and Concorde variet- ies, as well as an organic line of pears through its Lil Snap- pers kid-sized fruit program, Stemilt has debuted a pop-up merchandising display that promotes its Rushing Rivers pears and the regions in which they're grown. "is helps retailers tell the story of where pears come from and how they are grown — the farm-to- fork story that consumers want to know, especially with their produce," enthuses Shales. e company has also launched a 5-pound pouch bag that promotes the Rushing Rivers story, for pears that ship in display-ready containers. "It's a great in- and-out promotion to capture a higher ring and boost the pear category," she adds. Because a typical pear tree takes eight to 10 years to reach production, propagating new varieties takes time. However, Stephenson tells retailers to watch for new heirloom varieties from Washington state and Oregon over the next several years. 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