U.S. production of the New Zealand-bred Envy apple is expected to rise considerably this season, and to more-than-double over the coming years.
Oppy - one of the North American sales agents - said domestic conventional volumes are set to increase by 40% in the 2019-20 season. Organics, meanwhile, are set to grow by more than 50%.
The growth curve is expected to continue into the future, with 150% more fruit anticipated by 2025.
Oppy said Envy is elevating to a mainstream premium status at retail, through strong year-round availability and effective merchandising and promotional opportunities.
The variety is currently grown in Washington, Chile, Europe and New Zealand.
Supporting its volume push, Oppy said the Envy crop promises a high-quality apple thanks to a mild Washington summer that placed little stress on the fruit, following a cold spring.
Envy's crop status, coupled with shopper propensity emphasized by recent independent research, has Envy owners New Zealand-based T&G Global and its North American sales agents – which also include CMI Orchards and Rainier Fruit Co. – feeling optimistic about the season.
“The growing season finished well, and harvest is underway; so far, the fruit coming off the trees looks excellent and should enable a smooth transition from a strong NZ import season,” said Chris Willett, general manager at EnzaFruit Products, T&G’s Washington-based branch.
“We feel Envy demand – customer and consumer – has escalated during the last few years, and our research helped confirm it rises to the always evolving shopper preference; a unique sweet/tart balance, firm and juicy texture and beautiful white, interior flesh.”
British Columbia-based Oppy says it is enthusiastic about partnering with customers to deliver targeted, sales-driving in-store programs.
The larger crop and Envy’s leading storage abilities mean a consistently fresh Washington experience – supported by summertime import fruit – for the robust, year-round shopper demand.
“As always, there’s great anticipation among our customers for the fresh-crop Enza varieties,” said Roger Aguirre, Oppy’s apple category director.
“Envy continues to shine, and provide clarity, as a category driver in the crowded apple set. It is the No. 2 apple in the category for YOY-dollar and -volume gains, with only near 5% of the premium apples segment.
“We believe it can perform even better with consistent placement and the exciting, customer promotions planned for the season.”
Jazz - Enza’s tangy variety - is also making strides this season. Its growth is organic-driven, at 60% versus last season, and the variety should be available through March.