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  • Consumers’ Love of Avocados Continues. And What’s Not to Love?

    Sliced Avocados

With the average American eating 7.75 lbs. of avocados annually, U.S. is second only to Mexico in avocado consumption. Despite a drop at the beginning of the pandemic, sales continue to rise, and show no signs of slowing; industry projections say U.S. demand will increase 7% this year.

Consumers cited several reasons for turning to avocados during the pandemic, but two stand out: protecting their health by making smarter choices, and the desire to eat food that brought them comfort. Many praised avocados as a quick and easy snack during boredom eating. And as out-of-home dining options vanished and more families ate meals together, money saved from eating in restaurants could be spent on splurge items. Even though restaurants and communities are welcoming customers again, cooking at home is expected to continue after things fully reopen.

Industry projections say U.S. demand for avocados will increase 7% this year

According to the UNFI Consumer Insights team, Nielsen research (the latest 52 weeks ending 1/23/21) indicates fresh avocado is being purchased by households:

  • with 3-4 members and/or 5+ members
  • comprised of young professionals and college graduates
  • earning an aggregated income of +$100,000 or more
  • located in affluent suburbs and cosmopolitan centers
  • skewing toward Asian / Hispanic ethnicity

Avocados enjoy a big sales boost during Super Bowl and Cinco de Mayo, when fresh guacamole is a celebration staple, but to make them a best seller any time of year UNFI’s produce and marketing teams suggest:

Posting signage on how to buy and store them

  • Avocados are ripe when they are dark and yield to gentle pressure
  • Ripen them at home by placing them in a paper bag with an apple
  • Refrigerate them as soon as they are ripe, as they can spoil quickly

Offering suggestions on how to use them

  • Substitute avocados for butter or oil when baking
  • Add to smoothies, salads, and the ever-popular “toast”
  • Make great at-home skin and hair treatments

Calling out the health benefits of this antioxidant-rich superfood

  • Can help lower cholesterol, control blood pressure, and fight disease
  • 80 calories per serving and 0 mg of cholesterol
  • (Note: research indicates consumers aren’t as aware of avocados’ heart health benefits or as a substitute for foods high in saturated fats; there’s an opportunity for additional in-store education on these topics)

Displaying avocados prominently, with easy-to-follow recipes

  • Woodstock Foods Organic Diced Avocado package
  • UNFI introduced Woodstock® frozen, diced avocado in the fall of 2020. Primarily positioned for smoothies, breakfast bowls, and avocado-based sauces, this product simplifies prep time and makes getting your favorite avocado dish on the table a snap. No added salt or sugar means it delivers the same nutrition as fresh, and the Woodstock brand is the only certified USDA organic frozen avocado in the market. Woodstock frozen diced avocados deliver consumer convenience making them a great addition to grocery retailer freezers from coast to coast.