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California Grape Exports Reach Record High For Second Year in a Row

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California Grape Exports Reach Record High For Second Year in a Row

California Grape Exports Reach Record High For Second Year in a Row
November 10
09:21 2014

By Susan Day, Vice President of International Marketing, California Table Grape Commission

Creating demand for California grapes around the world is job one for the California Table Grape Commission. In addition to a comprehensive promotional and advertising program in the US and Canada, the commission targets 25 additional export markets.

We know from research that our campaign messages and visuals resonate with consumers and motivate them to buy more California grapes more often. The trade audience includes retailers and importers, and the campaign is designed to motivate them to carry, promote and buy more California grapes. Display contests, grape samplings, decorative use of Point of Purchase (POP) materials, grape festivals, and cooking demonstrations are examples of retailer promotions being implemented this season in export markets.

CaliforniaGrapes2November2014In 2014, holiday-themed promotions with retailers, launched for the first time last year, are being conducted in a number of export markets in Asia: China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Vietnam; and in Central America. Holiday themed POP was produced to support promotions including those for the Moon Festival in three Asian countries, Diwali in India and Malaysia, Halloween in New Zealand, plus the Christmas/New Year holidays in most of the targeted export markets. These themed campaigns provide another opportunity to target retailers with promotional ideas to gain secondary in-store placements and cross-merchandising with other holiday foods. In 2014 another holiday themed promotion will be launched for Children’s Day in Guatemala and Central America. Retailers have welcomed these themed promotions as they provide them with additional California grape movement by focusing consumers on the displays during these holiday periods.

Over the years, the global demand for California grapes has increased; production in California begins in May and California grapes are available into February. California produces 99 percent of the commercially grown fresh grapes in the US and production has increased almost 25 percent over the last five years, 20 percent in the last three. In the 2012-13 season, total California grape shipments including in the domestic US and Canadian markets crossed the 100 million 19-pound boxes mark for the first time. Last season, ending January 2014, that record was broken, with 116.2 million 19-pound boxes recorded.

Record Exports

Exports of California grapes also reached a new record high volume last season. According to US Department of Agriculture (USDA) data, exports reached an all-time record of more than 48 million 19-pound boxes shipped around the world to over 65 countries, up 17 percent from the record set in 2012; 45 percent more than the volume shipped ten years ago.

Top 10 Export Markets – May 2013 through January 2014

  1. Canada
  2. China/Hong Kong
  3. Mexico
  4. Philippines
  5. Taiwan
  6. Australia
  7. Malaysia
  8. Indonesia
  9. Japan
  10. Singapore

CaliforniaGrapes3November2014Canada continues to be the largest export market for California grapes, handling 11.8 million 19-pound boxes in 2013-14. The same data shows China/Hong Kong at 7.9 million 19-pound boxes, Mexico at 6.6 million, Philippines at 2.6 million, Taiwan and Australia at 1.9 million, Malaysia at 1.6 million, Indonesia at 1.5 million, and Japan and Singapore at 1.3 million each.

Planned Retail and Consumer Campaigns

The California Table Grape Commission constantly seeks new and interesting ways to remind people of the benefits of eating grapes from California and to motivate increased purchase. Retail and consumer campaigns are planned in Asia, the Caribbean, Europe (United Kingdom), and Latin America, plus in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. These consumer campaigns will again build on the already high consumer demand for California grapes.

The California Table Grape Commission was created by the California legislature in 1967.

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