Pineapples have become the fastest-growing fruit in the UK, with demand at an all-time high, according to the country's largest food retailer, Tesco.
The supermarket giant says that sales of whole pineapples have grown by nearly 15% in the last year, with demand also rising for pineapple-based products, such as pineapple juice (+20%), Hawaiian pizzas (+15%), and tinned pineapple chunks (+5%).
“Pineapples have become the fruit taste of the moment and could soon rival the avocado as a once-niche fruit suddenly gaining mainstream popularity," said Tesco fresh pineapple buyer Morgan Jaquemet.
“In the last few years, we have seen demand jump because of the fruit’s rising popularity as a versatile and healthy food – it’s even made its way onto the barbecue in the summer months," added Jaquemet.
In the last two years, pineapple production in Costa Rica – the leading supplier of the fruit to Europe and the US – has increased by nearly 10%.
In response to this trend, Tesco has introduced new pineapple varieties into its stores, including convenience products, such as pre-cut snacking slices.
“We’ve been focused on making it easy for our customers to enjoy this fruit, and have introduced a range of prepared snacking pineapple cut into finger-sized shapes, which are popular as a healthy lunchbox treat for schoolkids," added Jaquemet. “Last year, we even sold pineapples at Halloween as a rival to the pumpkin for kids to carve into a scary face.”
Recently, Tesco has focused on expanding its range of avocado products, as the fruit continues its sudden rise in popularity, with sales at the supermarket increasing by over 10% last year.
In the last few months, the retailer has introduced 'gourmet avocados', which have a smoother and creamier taste, as well as miniature avocados and frozen avocado slices, to make the fruit more convenient and reduce waste for both customers and suppliers.
© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Sarah Harford. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.