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Citrus sales climb 8.2% in value in US

Having overtakes berries, citrus is now America’s 2nd fastest growing fruit category.

The spend on citrus fruit in the United States grew 8.2% year-on-year in the 52 weeks to July 30 to reach just under $3 billion.

But Nielsen data shows the rise in the volume of retail sales of citrus over the same period was not so marked, coming in at 3.6% to push the total to slightly over 2.27 billion lb.

While limes, oranges and lemons made the biggest contribution to the sales volumes, mandarins (39.6%) and oranges (26.8%) were the top fruits in terms of spend.

Compared to the previous year, sales of mandarins in the US enjoyed the strongest growth in both volume (up 12.7% to nearly 244 billion lb) and value (up 15.3%).

Also logging growth were limes (up 5.9% in volume and 14.6% in value) and lemons (up 4.7% in volume and 9.3% in value).

There was very little change for oranges, with the volume inching up 0.1% to just over 660 million lb and virtually the same spend.

Although the volume of grapefruit sales fell slightly (-2.6%) this year, the dollar value climbed 4.2%. Tangerines suffered the greatest fall, plummeting 26.7% in value and 16.1% in volume.

Specialty fruits, which make up a relatively small chunk of the citrus fruit market, also dropped both in volume (-11.6%) and value (-7.6%).

Source: Nielsen 

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Small rise in grape sales in UK

Thanks largely to shoppers buying them more often, retail sales of fresh table grapes in the UK are up 2.2% on last year to 227.9 million kg.

Thanks largely to shoppers buying them more often, retail sales of fresh table grapes in the UK are up 2.2% on last year to 227.9 million kg.

Kantar Worldpanel data also shows that the 5.5% rise in the frequency of grape purchases helped push up the grape spend to a total of £775.9 million for the 52 weeks to May 22. That total is 1.6% higher than the value of the grape market the previous year.

Red grapes

While there was a small increase in sales of grapes overall, sales of red grapes slipped, something Kantar Worldpanel attributed to decreasing penetration.  

Red grapes – which represent about 47% of both the total value and volume of the total grape market in the UK – saw sales worth £362.8 million, a total 1% under that for the previous 52 weeks, on a volume down 2.8% to 108 million kg.

The average price of £3.36/kg was up 1.9% on that a year ago.

White grapes

A 3.2% decline in the volume of white grapes bought by shoppers per trip was a key factor in the 2.5% decline in the white grape spend to £269.3 million. The volume, 82.4 million kg, was practically unchanged, growing just 0.1% on the previous year.

White grapes accounted for more than a third of all grapes sold at retail in the UK and boast a 63.3% market penetration rate, compared to 59.6% for red grapes, 37.5% for mixed grapes and 27% for black grapes. The average price for white grapes was up 1.9% to £3.27/kg.

Mixed grapes

The mixed grape market was worth £84.2 million, having grown 17.7% on last year. In volume terms, it was up 27.3% to 20.4 million kg. Kantar Worldpanel said this growth was driven by new shoppers entering the market.

The average price for mixed grapes was £4.12/kg, which was higher than the prices for red, white or black grapes alone but down 7.5% on the average price for mixed grapes a year ago.

Black grapes

Thanks to new shoppers entering the black grape market – the penetration rate rose 15.9% – the black grape market enjoyed a 20.9% increase in spend to a total of £58.7 million and the total sales volume grew 25.1% to 16.9 million kg. However, the average price of £3.48/kg was 3.3% lower than that of the previous year.