Del Monte thriving heading into fall season
In the fall, Del Monte’s focus shifts to a range of fall produce, with butternut squash taking center stage as a popular item.
“Alongside this, we curate an array of soup starters and mirepoix, aligning with the comforting flavors of the season,” said Kirk Teske, the company’s vice president of fresh-cut sales and operations for North America. “Interestingly, our cut fruit line has become a year-round offering, even when faced with cooler weather. Despite the chill, our sales continue to thrive.”
The company’s perennial bestsellers persistently include fresh-cut Del Monte Gold Pineapple, watermelon and various melon varieties.
“Mango remains a strong contender, its popularity remaining unwavering as we transition its sourcing from Mexico to Ecuador and Brazil,” Teske said. “Additionally, our fresh-cut Pinkglow pineapple line is progressively gaining momentum.”
To flourish with fall produce, as Del Monte has for so many years, it’s discovered that precision is essential to success.
“It’s about curating the right assortment, precisely cut and packaged perfectly, all at the right time,” Teske said.
The 2022 fall season marked a post-COVID resurgence for Del Monte, as well as many in the industry.
“It was gratifying to observe the resurgence in demand for larger packs,” Teske said. “This year holds even greater promise for growth in this aspect. Anticipating the coming season, we’re cognizant of shifting growing regions. While challenges are on the horizon, we’re well-prepared to navigate them adeptly.”
The company thanks the industry partners who have been instrumental in its journey.
“Partnering with suppliers of raw produce and integrating vertically for items like melons and Del Monte Gold pineapple has fortified our position in serving customers effectively,” Teske said.
As Del Monte heads into the new year, it sees high-demand, high-value cut fruit SKUs holding immense promise.
“Despite the challenges posed by ingredients such as blueberries, kiwi and coconut, the rewards are substantial,” Teske said.
“Additionally, the introduction of jackfruit as a fall option, doubling as a remarkable meat substitute, presents an exciting avenue for growth.”
When it comes to its retail partners, the company also has great relationships, which help both sides grow and profit.
“For optimal retail sales, quality is paramount,” Teske said.
“Displaying pristine raw products within well-lit, temperature-controlled cases is crucial for drawing customer attention and ensuring satisfaction.”
Overall, Del Monte is successful thanks to the philosophy and strong team that is behind making it the best it can be.
“Amid our company’s landscape, innovation is embraced wholeheartedly, rendering this era within the food industry rife with endless possibilities,” Teske said.
“Whether it’s fresh faces joining our team or exhilarating developments, our company ethos encourages exploration and innovation. It’s a great time to be in the food industry, nothing is off the table.”