United Fresh Produce Association and the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) have announced a new partnership to significantly increase the sales of fresh produce in convenience stores. A new task force of members of both groups met during the United Fresh 2014 convention in Chicago IL recently.
As the leading associations representing produce suppliers and their convenience store customers, United Fresh and NACS have formed the partnership to identify best practices that can be shared across the industry to assist convenience store operators in developing their own fresh produce supply chains and in-store management.
With more than 151,000 locations across the United States, convenience stores are increasingly seen as a convenient destination for consumers to buy fruit and vegetables. In 2013, produce sales at convenience stores were up 16.7%, more than doubling the overall 7.3% growth rate of produce in the United States.
At its initial meeting in Chicago, the task force reviewed challenges in supply chain management, in-store handling and merchandising, and other barriers to produce success for convenience retailers. The task force also began identifying best practices in meeting each of these challenges, learning from retailers and produce suppliers that are finding the greatest success. The associations plan to develop tools and services to share best practices and successes with the broader memberships of NACS and United Fresh.
Convenience store sales of produce reached $328 million in 2013, and the groups believe sales can increase dramatically over the next five years from this task force’s efforts.
For more information, go to www.unitedfresh.org or call 202-303-3400.