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Snackchat: Apples

Snackchat: Apples

As the steam swirls out of three carefully cut slits, all that stands between me and a bounty of seasonal apples is homemade pie crust. Honeycrisp, Granny Smith, and everything in between could be lying just beneath the surface. But, don’t take it from me. I am not the only consumer-turned-trade-member whipping up some apple-centric goods this November. Read on to hear how our industry friends bring the holidays to shopper kitchens...

Blake Belknap,

Vice President of Sales, Rainier Fruit Company

“Showcasing apples in November is a prime opportunity to attract shoppers; they’re the classic flavor of fall. Retailers can take on a fresh angle of opportunity by showcasing the versatility of an apple and its ability to be eaten as-is or as a fall ingredient to be baked with! Retailers can keep displays fresh and exciting by creating destinations throughout the department using imagery and merchandising to highlight apples as a fall ingredient. Plus, promoting big packs and using coupons is a great way to drive traffic and incremental sales!”


Jason Bushong,

Wenatchee Division Manager, Giumarra Companies

“November provides an opportunity for retailers to promote apples as consumers seek great-tasting seasonal fruit during this special time of year. A robust online presence for retailers, combined with vibrant in-store merchandising, will best maximize foot traffic in the produce department and increase sales. Product origin stories, taste profiles, recipe ideas, and health attributes are all good messages to share with consumers as part of this path-to-purchase journey. We continue to hear consumers across the U.S. express a strong desire to visit their local grocery store to purchase our Lemonade™ apples. We will have domestic production on Lemonade soon and look forward to bringing this stunning yellow apple to produce departments year-round.”


Brianna Shales,

Marketing Director, Stemilt

“November signals the start of the holiday season and is a big time for baking with apples! It’s an ideal time for retailers to carry larger bag sizes (5 lbs) as in-and-outs, and promote mainline apples via bulk promotions. The exciting Cosmic Crisp® apple will also be starting its season in early November. It’s a Honeycrisp-Enterprise cross with many great eating and cooking attributes that give it broad consumer appeal. It’s smart for retailers to make display space for Cosmic Crisp as soon as it’s available, and the branding behind it lends to creative opportunities that will drive shopper purchases of apples!”

Catherine Gipe-Stewart,

Communications Manager, Superfresh Growers®

“As we enter the fall holiday season, apples play an even larger role in produce. My favorite apple is Autumn Glory®, which is exclusive to Superfresh Growers®. Each juicy bite has dynamic flavors delivering the cinnamon and caramel notes reminiscent of the season it is named for. Autumn Glory has even been nicknamed the ‘craft beer of apples.’ This internationally known apple is sold coast to coast in the United States, and Nielsen data shows Autumn Glory grew 40 percent last fall in sales. With volume increasing, this trend is expected to continue. Autumn Glory signals the beginning of fall and reminds people of their favorite season year-round.”


Rochelle Bohm,

Brand Manager, CMI Orchards

“November marks the start of the holiday baking season, and there is no better culinary staple than apple pie. Retailers can capture the attention of home bakers by cross-merchandising apples with other bakery pairings, creating a destination that drives sales across categories. At this time of year, CMI’s new crop apples are fresh off the trees with a bounty of flavors and options to promote in both conventional and organic options. Offering customers assortment is key to trading shoppers up to higher-priced apples that lift sales. CMI has the largest selection of specialty branded core and organic apples that are proven winners.”


Joe Vargas,

Director of Marketing and Data Analytics, FirstFruits Marketing

“Apples are one of the first foods people think of to celebrate fall. In November, apples are being baked into pies and cobblers, dipped in caramel, served on salads, and used in other delicious autumn dishes. Consumers want to know that their apples are high quality in taste and texture. Retailers should focus on driving apple sales by giving apples prime in-store placement and eye-catching merchandising and good color breaks; red, green, and yellow apples, like our Opal® variety, can be used to enhance your apple game. For recipe ideas, visit our website at!”

Rebecca Catlett,

Director of Marketing and Communications, Okanagan Specialty Fruits®

“The holidays are filled with so many sensory memories, including the smell of grandma’s apple pie in the oven. Retailers should take advantage of how holiday meals can help drive sales by giving apples prime placement during this time. Offering recipes in-store or digitally is a great way to give consumers new ideas on how to incorporate apples into their favorite holiday dishes. The orchard-fresh flavor of Arctic® apples makes them the perfect ingredient, and we have some mouthwatering recipes at Getting creative with cross-merchandising ideas can also help inspire consumers since apples are the perfect holiday ingredient for salads, stuffing, charcuterie boards, pies, and desserts. We all know the main focus of the holidays is spending quality time with family and friends, so convenience definitely comes into play. Arctic apples are pre-sliced and ready to eat, making them so quick and easy to add to your favorite recipe. This means more time for what really matters!”


Krista Beckstead,

Brand Manager, Starr Ranch® Growers

“Driving sales to the apple category throughout the holiday push is key as retailers are looking for exciting ways to promote seasonal products in the produce section, and apples just scream fall! They create excitement within the produce department as the seasons change, and with apple harvest now here, everyone’s favorite variety is fresh off the trees! Consumers are making caramel apples, baking with apples, compiling charcuterie boards, and even possibly shaking up a seasonal apple drink. It’s a prelude to even more fun and joyous times ahead with the holidays right around the corner. And, of course, more baking with apples will help us kick off the next season.”