With the Christmas marketing pull in sight, California’s citrus harvest is well underway with good quality and good volume the order of the day. The preseason estimate for the 2016-17 navel crop was pegged at 84 million cartons by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. If realized, that would put the volume slightly below last year but ahead of the five year average of about 81.6 million cartons.
Joan Wickham, director of communications for Sunkist Growers, in Valencia, CA, said the state’s largest citrus supplier is right on Target with its production goals. “This year’s Sunkist navel crop is off to a fantastic start, with a delicious balance of tart/sweet flavors that bodes well for a strong season ahead,” she said. “Navel oranges are a classic holiday staple, and with tried-and-true heritage traditions relating to food trending among consumers now — this is a fantastic variety for retailers to promote during the holiday season.”
To assist retailers in promoting the crop, Sunkist offers festive holiday themed packaging to help build excitement in store with eye-catching displays to drive sales.
Wickam also noted, on Nov. 29, that the Sunkist Cara Cara season was just getting underway. “We are looking forward to another strong crop this year. Nutrient rich, beautiful in color and deliciously sweet — this variety holds tremendous promise for growth as consumers become more familiar with its distinct characteristics.”
She noted that the Cara Cara looks like a navel on the outside, but it has its own character. “It’s important that retailers educate consumers about the differences that make this variety unique,” she said. “Sunkist offers point-of-sale materials, including customizable display bins to tell the story of this variety — and why they shouldn’t be missed!”