Don’t overlook the consumer appeal of raspberries, blackberries

From The Packer | 1 August 2023

Overview of raspberries and blackberries in the U.S. market, complemented by charts from Agronometrics. Original published on July 31, 2023. 

Blackberries and raspberries may not top consumers’ shopping lists, but they are commodities that a good number of shoppers pick up at least occasionally.

The Packer’s Fresh Trends 2023 survey says 1 in 4 consumers purchased blackberries in the past year, and 24% of consumers purchased raspberries.

Average retail price for blackberries in 2022 was $3.37 per unit, up 4% from 2022. Average retail price for raspberries was $1.72, up 5% from the previous year.

all commodities prices b 2

Source: USDA Market News via Agronometrics.
(Agronometrics users can view this chart with live updates here)

Irvine, Calif.-based Gem-Pack Berries LLC, which recently partnered with Watsonville, Calif.-based Well-Pict Berries, ships raspberries out of Baja California year-round, with a new crop starting in central Mexico in October, said Michelle Deleissegues, vice president of marketing.

“Baja weather has been fairly typical, and the raspberry crop is beautiful,” she said.

The company expects to start shipping blackberries and blueberries from central Mexico in September.

Proprietary raspberry varieties have been popular with customers of Salinas, Calif.-based Naturipe Farms LLC and have had strong demand, said Fernando Aguiar, director of business development.

“This year we’ll be able to offer our customers even greater volumes and bigger promotional opportunities,” he said.

Mexico was in its seasonal rainy period in July, which brought some challenges to the current season, Aguiar said. But he expected favorable weather conditions in the fall to produce “an exceptional new crop.”

“We’re expecting great quality, flavor and size on our raspberries,” he said. “We grow outstanding berries in all regions, but our Baja raspberries grow in ideal conditions that allow them to have great size, flavor and overall great quality.”

Naturipe’s proprietary raspberry varieties will come first from Baja California and then central Mexico.

“We’ll have a nice overlap of production from both areas while our volumes build toward their first peak in the early fall,” Aguiar said.

The company produces raspberries year-round.

In the blackberry category, Naturipe’s Southern Grace variety out of Georgia “is an excellent piece of fruit that is delighting consumers,” he said.

The News in Charts is a collection of stories from the industry complemented by charts from Agronometrics to help better tell their story.

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