Florida Citrus Commission Chairman Ned Hancock reports that the news continues to be positive on the retail sales front for orange juice.
“During this time of great uncertainty, Americans continue to seek out products they know and trust,” he said in an April 10 report to Florida citrus industry members. “Additionally, they are turning to items they know may help support a healthy immune system. For many, that means 100 percent orange juice.”
WHAT CONSUMERS ARE SAYING
Hancock says the Economic and Market Research Department at the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC) recently added a new question to its monthly survey of American consumers to measure how COVID-19 concerns have altered their behavior when it comes to purchasing 100 percent orange juice.
“Nearly 40 percent of respondents indicated they have purchased more OJ recently, with over one-fifth of them indicating they purchased more OJ because it’s good for a healthy immune system and has vitamin C,” Hancock reports. “A small percentage indicated they have bought less OJ, and specifically noted it was due to decreased availability.”
RESPONDING TO CHANGES
According to Hancock, some retailers have placed a limit on the number of OJ containers each consumer can purchase. “Similar restrictions have been placed on other popular items to help retailers ensure more customers have access,” he explains. “For some items, this may be due to scarcity. For OJ, as reported by Commissioner Bill Poulton at (Florida Citrus) Mutual’s board meeting this week, it comes down to logistics. While supply of 100 percent orange juice is not an issue, moving the juice from processor to retailer takes time. Brands are replenishing store shelves as quickly as possible to meet the unexpected increase in demand.”
Due to these short-term constraints, Hancock says changes are being made on the FDOC marketing front. Since January, the FDOC’s e-commerce campaign has led to $2.2 million in attributed sales of 100 percent orange juice across Instacart, Walmart and Amazon.
“However, with demand high due to increased awareness, consumers are turning to orange juice of their own accord,” Hancock says. “The FDOC has adjusted its spend to extend the campaign into May and June. This allows the department to build off current momentum and ensure 100 percent orange juice remains relevant as consumers slowly return to their normal shopping patterns.”
To increase communication with the citrus industry, the FDOC is introducing a series of webinars.
On April 16 at 11 a.m., Jackie Hopkins with FDOC partner agency Edible will provide a live presentation on FDOC’s new marketing campaign using e-commerce as a way to drive OJ sales.
On April 30 at 11 a.m., Marisa Zansler, director of FDOC’s Economic and Market Research Department, will present the latest Nielsen retail sales data for the 4-week period ending April 11.
Details on how to access these webinars are available by clicking the hyperlinks above and at FDOCGrower.com.