Quality Insights

Perfecting the Clementine Category

18 November 2019
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01 January 2017

When winter arrives the retail shelves start filling up with clementines and satsumas - the so-called "Easy-peelers". Consumers love them for their convenience. The popularity of these fruits is largely down to their rich colour, clean skin, good taste with plenty of juice, and no seeds - as well as being easy to peel. Satsumas remain popular, but the clementines help to keep the season going with varieties such as Clemenules, Nour and Nadorcotts.

Nadorcott is a licensed late-season variety, the season lasting roughly 2 months. This particular variety has filled a period of the season when historically eating quality was at a low.

They have a great colour and are particularly good to eat. The fruits have deep orange flesh, are juicy, have almost no seeds and a strong mandarin aroma. There is a good aromatic balance between sweet and slightly sour.

The introduction of Nadorcott has elevated the eating experience for consumers during the second part of the easy-peeler season. This has helped the consumption of easy-peelers and developed sales.

At this time of year, consumers indulge in more of these fruits because they are easy to eat. Consumers should expect a great taste, with a fine balance between sugar and acidity. A good eating experience will drive sales, possibly moreso than the price, with the many varieties available.

While sugar levels in easy-peelers throughout the year already vary quite a bit (roughly from 10 to 15 Brix), acidity levels fluctuate even more. The fruits with the highest acidity have three times more citric acid than the fruits with lowest acidity. Needless to say, these differences in sugar levels and acidity are picked up by consumers.

The challenge for retailers is to pick the right varieties at the right time, and balance sugar and acidity. This way wise companies optimise taste and shelflife throughout the citrus season.

At Innovative Fresh our programmes can show which origins and varieties are best at each stage throughout the season. Issues we encounter concern differences in sizes within the display, skin damage, puffiness, dehydration, and fruits that are not at their most fresh. Also there are big differences in quality between retailers.

This season, as with other citrus, we will probably see new origins due to low yield from the usual countries. Introduction of more varieties will segment the category further, to the greater benefit of consumers. Our monitoring programs provide insights that show what the consumer really likes, and we think that our customers have a big advantage over their competitors in this respect.

We provide 360 insights in this category, helping suppliers and retailers with the tools to improve their category plans. This helps them to promote the right varieties at the right time for the best taste and quality, encouraging greater consumption of these popular fruits.

At InQuality we monitor fresh produce every week, testing for brix and quality. Let us help you to finetune your programmes to give the consumer the Best in Fresh. Get in touch with us at info@inquality.se.

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