Oppy expects smooth SH apple transition despite production challenges
Oppy is expecting a smooth transition from domestic U.S. to Southern Hemisphere apples this spring, despite the growing season being challenged by weather and labor shortages.
All offerings arriving from either New Zealand, Chile or Argentina, favorites like Royal Gala, Fuji, Braeburn, Granny Smith, Ambrosia, Smitten and Pink Lady along with exciting club varieties like Envy, JAZZ and Pacific Rose round out Oppy’s apple basket.
Its familiar pear assortment of Bosc, Bartlett, D’Anjou and Abate Fetel varieties also includes a strong organic program specifically from Argentina and Chile. Seeing increased demand for bagged pears, Oppy imports in bulk and bags at the source.
New Zealand - where Oppy stakeholder, and JAZZ and Envy global rights owner T&G Global, is based - has over recent weeks cut its apple export forecast due to a shortage of labor, while in Chile towards the beginning of the year, heavy rains affected apple production.
However, Oppy’s Director of Apples and Pears Roger Aguirre anticipates placing the right fruit at the right port at the right time for a flawless follow-up to the domestic season.
"Even the best growers in the world can be affected by Mother Nature just like anyone else. Customers can be reassured that we don’t make exceptions to our standards and we look forward to delivering some of the best eating fruit in a seamless transition.”
Envy and JAZZ apples hold top-10 category positioning and offer memorable flavor and crunch with prime retail sizing to suit all shopper demographics. “Oppy has shopper-targeted and volume-driving promotions in the coming months,” Aguirre said.
Offering a dynamic Mother’s Day push, Envy promotional activities will center around kid-friendly recipes from chef-partner Joel Gamoran while multi-buy promotions will further motivate shoppers to incorporate the apple into eating celebrations with targeted POS. JAZZ is the exclusive apple partner for the movie “Spirit Untamed,” a family-friendly favorite scheduled for release by DreamWorks June 4.
Co-branded packaging and POS, digital and social activities will aim to further position JAZZ as the snacking apple for all, especially the little ones.
And, with the heightened demand for organic apples evident in their double-digit year-on-year growth to a 16% share of total category sales and 12% share of pounds, organic Envy and JAZZ volume is set to increase in the years ahead, said Aguirre.
Packaged apple sales also skyrocketed in 2020, now representing 45 percent of category pounds. JAZZ and Envy are available in a range of pouch bags, poly bags, clamshells and totes along with innovative packs delivering convenience and sustainability.
Delivering fruit nationwide, ports ranging from Philadelphia, Miami, Houston, Los Angeles, Seattle and beyond will receive good supply. Oppy is poised to anticipate and respond to shopper and retailer demands, going into the import season and year-round with complete flexibility and cost-effective offerings.