How Fresh Fruit Can Lead to Fresh Profits

Aug 14, 2018

About

LaurelGroceryCompany_Logo

Laurel Grocery Company, Cornell's IGA
Shelby, OH

Produce Department
Department Size: 8' cut fruit section
Store Specs: 45,000 SQ - FT


Strategy

"At our store, we offer fruit that is cut fresh each day. Our customers love that the fruit is prepared here in-store and they specifically seek it out. In the past, we tried to save employee time by offering pre-cut fruit, but the customers could tell a definite difference and they made it known to us that they preferred fruit cut here. Limiting the time between cutting the fruit and placing it on the shelf keeps it fresher and preserves the texture. Today, we cut about 1,000 pounds of fruit per month and we price it based upon the market, earning us $2,700 in monthly sales."

1,000 lbs.
of fruit cut each month

$2,700
in monthly sales

50-60%
Profit Margin

Why it Works

For Our Shoppers

Convenience
Items like melons and pineapples are messy and cumbersome to cut at home. Customers love that we have them prepped and ready to go.

Freshness
The quality of fruit degrades quickly. Cutting the fruit fresh each day ensures that our shoppers get it at peak freshness.

Healthy
Since the fruit is ready to eat, it is a simple way to increase the amount of fresh fruits our customers eat each day.

For Our Store

Good profit margins
Our margins on cut fruit range from 50-60 percent and can even be higher.

Fulfills promise to our customers
Healthy, fresh offerings reinforce our dedication to our customers' health and wellness.

Unique offering
Daily cut fresh fruit is one more fresh and local touch to help us set ourselves apart from other stores in the area.


Tactics

Choose the right fruits
Fruit that is in season gives you the best final product.

Sanitation is key
Make sure to thoroughly wash the fruits, boards, and knives.

Package and display the fruit properly
Use well-visible containers, such as clear cups with clear lids. Then, display the fruit in a well-refrigerated case.

Add labels
All produce in the cup must be added to the ingredients label, even if it is visible.

Pricing

We currently price watermelon at $1.99/lb., cantaloupe at $2.29/lb., and mixed fruit at $4.29/lb., but our prices can change according to the market price.

Pro Tips

Group like fruits
Combining similar fruits, such as tropical fruits together in one batch and berries in another, creates better flavor profiles.

Prep according to color
When combining different colors of fruits, place the darker colors on the bottom. If you were to place strawberries above pineapple, for example, the red color from the strawberries would bleed into the pineapple and make the display less visually appealing.

Take the shelf life of various fruits into consideration
When mixing fruits, some will break down quicker than others and will reduce the shelf life of the whole cup.

BestPractices-Cornel-Fruit-700x700

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