BSF reports juicy berry sales

By James Knowles

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Cent, Fruit, Sainsbury

British supermarkets are reporting that sales of berries have been
strong this year hitting £204m (€304m) despite adverse weather
conditions, due to consumer health trends.

British Summer Fruits (BSF), which supplies over 92 per cent of all soft drinks sold to supermarkets, reports that there has been an overall increase of 6.8 per cent to 53,000 tonnes of fruit, despite unusually poor weather conditions faced by growers this year.

"It was increasingly hard this season for growers - most of whom are family businesses - to satisfy the ever increasing consumer demand and maintain positive financial results for their businesses,"​ Said Laurence Olins, chairman of British summer fruits.

As consumers become more health conscious supermarkets are having to stock up on superfoods such as berries, in order to attract the healthy eater back into stores.

Analysts from Innova Market Insights said recently that the increasing popularity of berries and berry flavours in recent years is now extending to other less well known super fruits, such as pomegranate, mangosteen, acai and noni

Whilst there was a more modest rise of 12 per cent at Asda, the store has enjoyed a dramatic increase of 47% in local strawberry sales, a spokesman told FoodandDrinkEurope.com.

A Sainsbury's spokesman told FoodandDrinkEurope.com that in the last four weeks, year on year, strawberry sales have increased 53 per cent, blueberries by as much as 81 per cent and blackberries by a staggering 91 per cent.

"We all know that blueberries are good for us and programmes such as 'You Are What You Eat', have confirmed their superfood status. Actually it's no supprise we are seing an increase right now, because so many people are trying to ward off colds and flu," said Sainsbury's blueberry buyer, Julien Roberts.

BSF reports that demand for home-grown berries is now so high it outstrips demands for most of the year.

Blackberries showed the most significant increase at 31 per cent to £4m (€5.9m). Raspberries followed closely at 26 per cent £35m (€52m), and British strawberries rose five per cent to £165m (€246m).

Related topics: Fruit, vegetable, nut ingredients

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