Commodity: Organic Lemons

Lemons

Commodity Overview

Organic lemons have seen an increase in popularity in the past two years. Sales rose nearly 38% in 2015 and another 38.5% in 2016. Leap onto the organic lemon bandwagon and let this little, yellow fruit add green to your bottom line.

Varieties

For more information on variety characteristics, visit our conventional lemons page.

Sales Strategies

Promote organic lemons as healthy, environmentally friendly ingredient and garnish. Lemons are rarely eaten alone, so pair them with other organic items like bagged salads, fish, and baking items. Include juicers and peelers in organic lemon promotions.

Don’t forget to promote organic lemons with organic tomatoes and guacamole when it’s time for those big football parties as guacamole plays a central role in game-day gatherings.

Include organic lemons in holiday baking promotions as an ingredient in pies and bars. 

Create a summertime organic lemonade promotion with organic lemons at the center. Include organic sugar and juicers in the promotion.

Dynamic Displays

Consider displaying conventional lemons and organic lemons near each other as organic lemons are not that much more expensive than conventional ones. Consumers may be willing to pay the extra price as lemons are something that are often used with the peel on. The smaller exposure to pesticide in organic lemons may be appealing to some consumers.

If organic lemons sell quickly, you can display them on an unrefrigerated table. However, if your supply does not turn over every day, keep them refrigerated. Consider offering bagged organic lemons for those consumers who use a lot of lemons.

It’s important to carry different sizes of lemons as those looking to use them as a garnish will want smaller organic lemons than those seeking to use them as an ingredient.

Lemons’ bright yellow color is an immediate eye-catcher. Display them with organic limes or use them as a color break with organic avocados or broccoli. Include organic lemons on a display of organic tomatoes and avocados to remind consumers of their use in guacamole.

In The Backroom

Shipping

There are a variety of ways to purchase organic lemons. They are often shipped in 10- and 20-pound cartons. They can also be found in 75- to 165-count cartons. Organic bagged lemons are available in cartons of 18, 2-pound bags.

Grades

U.S. No. 1
U.S. Export No. 1
U.S. Combination
U.S. No. 2

Handling

Temperature: 45 to 48 F, 7 to 9 C
Relative humidity: 85-90%
Mist: lightly
Typical shelf life: several weeks if properly refrigerated
Odor producer (Do not store or transport odor-sensitive items with commodities that produce odors.)
Highly sensitive to freezing injury. (Likely to suffer injury by one light freezing.)
Susceptible to chilling injury (Damage sometimes is not apparent until produce is returned to a higher temperature.)
Shoppers can keep lemons at room temperature for several days. Lemons can also store for one to five months.

Fresh Trends

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