Organic Produce Purchases Claim Record Numbers in 2014

0709 Bananas Specialty Produce
Photo courtesy of Specialty Produce

According to Grocery Headquarters and the Organic Trade Association (OTA), sales of organic food and non-food products set an all-time record in the U.S. in 2014. Sales jumped to $39.1 billion, which is 11.3% more than the previous year.

Organic food sales alone accounts for $35.9 billion of that market, which is an 11% rise from the previous year.

The majority of households purchase organic items on a regular basis; 80% of households polled in the South and 90% on the West Coast and New England buy organic items at supermarkets and retail stores, up from 68% in 2013. OTA research has found that there are no regional, demographic or partisan boundaries when it comes to purchasing organic foods.

These numbers indicate that organic sales now claim 5% of the total food market.

The supply of organic foods hasn’t caught up with the demand yet, which means that organic products do typically have a higher cost, giving way to potentially larger net profits for retailers and distributors who offer these products.

All this is good news for Organics Unlimited and other wholly organic companies.

To match the consumer demand, many retails store chains such as Bristol Farms in Southern California now merchandise organic fruits and vegetables as the majority product, and non-organic has evolved into a minor subset within produce, Produce Business recently reported. Similarly, New Seasons Market in Oregon bases its business model and brand image on organic offerings; 75% of the total produce is organic. Because it is a central component to its business, New Seasons Market places extra emphasis on sourcing organic produce purveyors that will maintain consistent quality in its products.

While customers enjoy seasonal products, Americans have become accustomed to having year-round access to certain fruits and vegetables, and that frame of mind hasn’t changed for organic produce. That means locations like PCC Natural Markets in Washington – which offers 95% organic produce – must stock organic produce year-round and supplement with seasonal fruits and vegetables when available.

Organics Unlimited keeps tabs on industry news such as this so it can anticipate retailers and distributors’ needs ahead of time. This allows us to plan appropriately by planting, harvesting and shipping sufficient amounts of organic bananas to keep up with consumer demand at any time of the year.

To learn more about our organic bananas and how you can offer them in your store, please visit OrganicsUnlimited.com. To learn more about the GROW program, please visit Growbananas.org.

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