Commodity: Organic Avocados
Organic avocado sales are growing with sales increasing 27% from 2015 to 2016, according to numbers from IRI/Fresh Look Marketing. With growing sales, organic avocados are definitely worth investing in to boost sales in your produce department. As the price difference between conventional and organic continues to narrow, organic avocados become appealing to a wide variety of shoppers.
For more information on variety characteristics, visit our conventional avocados page.
Make organic avocados a centerpiece of Super Bowl and other football season promotions. It’s a great way to help consumers make the switch from conventional avocados to organic ones.
Encourage consumers to use organic avocados as a topping for sandwiches. Pair them with other organic products like lunch meat and breads to boost sales of all products.
For a long time, avocados were pushed aside because of their high fat content. Disabuse consumers of that idea by including signs that talk about the health benefits of avocados along with the organic growing practices.
Organic avocados make an attractive display when paired with tomatoes and lemons. The pairing also encourages consumers to consider making homemade guacamole. Consider grouping these three organic items together, especially during football season.
Include more than one variety on your display along with options in sizes to meet the needs of a variety of consumers. Don’t dump avocados on the display and keep displays to one level to avoid bruising.
In The Backroom
Organic avocados are most often shipped in volume-fill, tray-packs, bags and 25-pound lugs. They are also often shipped in 48-, 60- and 70-count packs.
U.S. No. 1
U.S. No. 2
Imported avocados are subject to these requirements.
California fruit is required to be basically free from all defects that cause a waste of 10% or more by weight of the entire avocado.
The state offers a No. 1 and standard grade pack in most sizes.
Avocados should be shipped and received at 40 F, 4.4 C pulp temperature.
Major California and Florida shippers offer preconditioned avocados. Softening of avocados is triggered before shipment by ethylene treatment, then the fruit is refrigerated until delivered. That allows uniform softening with rapid turnover and immediate use.
The hass variety usually will turn black when ripe. Most Florida varieties and non-hass varieties remain green. An indication of ripeness for all varieties is when the fruit gives to slight pressure.
Fruit treated with ethylene can be stored up to two weeks. To soften, they should be kept at room temperature that does not exceed 75 F, 24 C.
An avocado produces ethylene gas as it ripens, but treating avocados with ethylene yields greater uniformity.
Temperature: cold-tolerant, 40 F, 4.4 C; cold-intolerant, 55 F, 13.3 C
Relative humidity: 85%
Typical shelf life: 14 to 28 days
Ethylene producer. Do not store or transport with commodities that produce ethylene.
Odor producer. Do not store or transport with odor-sensitive items, such as pineapple.
Highly sensitive to freezing injury
Susceptible to chilling injury. Damage sometimes is not apparent until the produce is returned to a higher temperature.
When stacking containers in the back room, make sure to stack organic items at the top so residue from conventional produce doesn’t drip down onto the organic items.
Organic items can be stored side by side in the cooler as long as no product is touching and no residue can drip from the conventional onto the organic product.
Size 32 avocado = 7.5 oz.
Size 36 avocado = 6.5 oz.
Size 40 avocado = 6 oz.
Size 48 avocado = 5 oz.
Size 60 avocado = 4 oz.
Size 70 avocado = 3.5 oz.
Size 84 avocado = 3 oz.
Sizes 32, 36 and 40 are best used center of the plate.
Sizes 48 and 60 are best used cubed in salads.
Size 70 is best used sliced on sandwiches.
All sizes are appropriate for guacamole.