Sunny Valley supporting retail partners
The produce industry is in unprecedented times as the COVID-19 pandemic creates challenges that no one has ever dealt with before. That’s why everything Sunny Valley International is doing right now is in support of its retailer partners and other customers.
“We recognize that COVID-19 has created unprecedented supply chain disruptions and have resulted in shifts in consumer purchasing preferences,” said Tom Beaver, director of sales for the Glassboro, NJ-based company. “With this in mind, as we look ahead to the Jersey peach and blueberry deals, our focus is on making advanced volume commitments and offering a full suite of pack sizes and styles with a particular emphasis on volume packs and grab-and-go bags for peaches.”
Additionally, throughout the summer, the company will be able to leverage its location —proximate to the Philadelphia, New York and New England markets — to ensure seamless delivery and consistency of supply to its customers.
“Given our exclusive marketing relationships with the grower-members of the Jersey Fruit Cooperative, Larchmont Farms and Gala Farms, we feel we have a unique connection with the growers that sets us apart in the market,” Beaver said. “Geographically, New Jersey has so many advantages over other growing regions. The same is true on the distribution side. Our products are picked, packed and on store shelves within a day or two, max. This means that when we’re shipping products, consumers will not find anything fresher or more flavorful.”
This is particularly important in the summer months when consumers in its target markets are looking for New Jersey products as the “local” option, and it’s Sunny Valley’s goal to help its retailers and other customers satisfy this demand.
“We expect to have excellent stone fruit and blueberry crops this season,” Beaver said. “Blueberries will be in full swing from the second week of June through the end of July, and we will have stone fruit volume to support any program from the beginning of July through mid-September.”
At the end of May, the company will be launching a new website for the Jersey Fruit Cooperative. The site will highlight the co-op’s 80-year history and it’s future as a leader in supplying blueberries and stone fruit.
“Additionally, the site will feature profiles of every co-op member that can be used by our retailer partners and other customers at point-of-sale to highlight the fact that they are supporting local growers,” Beaver said.
The company knows these are challenging times for many and its strategy going forward is to work with its retail partners to ensure that everyone gets through these tough times successfully.
“Our goal this season is to do everything in our power to help retailers promote our products,” Beaver said. “As noted, this includes making every pack size and style available to them. Additionally, we are already underway with plans to support specific in-store marketing campaigns with certain retail partners, and are making similar opportunities available to other customers.”