Zespri ends season with amazing growth at retail and extends SunGold season with kiwifruit from Italy

November 13 , 2018


ORANGE COUNTY, CA – Zespri’s consumer campaign, “A Real Snack, for Real Life” and consumer sweepstake brought the Zespri brand to life and drove consumers to retail stores looking for SunGold Kiwifruit. As demand for Zespri products continue to increase, Zespri is working to match this growth by extending their season with production in new regions. This winter, Zespri North America will supply consumers with Italian-grown conventional and organic SunGold and green kiwifruit. The New Zealand Kiwifruit season begins in May and runs through November with Zespri Italian available from December through February.

“Our consumer campaign and promotion were very successful,” explains Sarah Deaton, Zespri’s marketing manager for North America. “We are beyond excited about the results with over 800,000 entries including over 100,000 unique contest entries! The “A Real Snack, for Real Life” Zespri SunGold campaign, targeting busy moms, generated significant media exposure reaching 164 million impressions.”

Since the launch of SunGold, consumer demand has been explosive. “It’s exciting to watch the growth of the brand,” states Deaton. “Zespri’s brand awareness has increased by 117% in our top markets, and over 41% nationwide compared to last year.”*

To build on the media campaign, Zespri helped move over 87,000 units of SunGold for retailers using Ibotta. Ibotta gives consumers cash back rewards when purchasing Zespri Kiwifruit. “This is just another way we support retailers by driving consumers to their stores and increasing sales,” suggests Deaton. “We also support retailers by developing customized programs & promotions through our market development managers. We assist retailers with regional display contests, custom POSM, and digital programs to help promote and encourage the trial of SunGold and other Zespri Kiwifruit varieties. We continue to hear from consumers that they love Zespri SunGold but are still having trouble finding it. We see tremendous growth with our strategic retail partners when they are building large displays to help consumers find Zespri easily.”    

Zespri Extends Season

Zespri is excited to extend the season starting in early December as the New Zealand season concludes and will continue through February from its Italian growing partners. Zespri Italian growers grow for taste and give consumers the same consistent eating experience relative to the New Zealand fruit. Consumers are looking for the Zespri label and know they are getting the best-tasting kiwifruit. Zespri is expecting to import the largest volume of Zespri Italian SunGold and Organic SunGold Kiwifruit to date, up 70% over last year although the overall volume remains in short supply with the production base still developing.   

Zespri Italian growers work with our Italy supply team and third party auditors to ensure they are growing and harvesting to the Zespri standards. The best Italian orchards and very best fruit are selected for export. Growing fruit from Italy meets Zespri’s growth strategy to grow the kiwifruit category in North America by working towards achieving year-round supply. Although SunGold leads the growth strategy, Zespri’s goal is to supply a full range of fresh kiwi products including SunGold, Green, Organic Green and Organic SunGold.


Zespri ends the New Zealand season with amazing growth at retail and extends the SunGold season with kiwifruit from Italy. SunGold Kiwifruit will be available through February. Consumers just need to look for the Zespri label to know they are getting the same great taste. Retailers can contact Zespri’s regional market development managers for more information.



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