Upstate New York isn’t the typical place you’d think jackfruit sells well, but Tops Friendly Markets is proving it’s possible.
The Williamsville, N.Y.-based retailer partnered with Los Alamitos, Calif.-based Frieda’s Specialty Produce to maximize jackfruit sales by training employees on “the secrets of selling jackfruit.”
One store is selling 100 cases a week.
“Shoppers have been asking for fresh jackfruit for quite some time, and once we started to stock them, they were flying off the shelf,” says Scott Tyo, category business manager for Tops, in a news release. “Our overall sales have gone up with jackfruit as the main draw in the produce department.”
Alex Jackson Berkley, assistant sales manager at Frieda’s, says consumers demand for jackfruit is just getting started.
“Who knew you could sell so much jackfruit in upstate New York?” Jackson Berkley says, in a news release. “What we have now is the perfect storm of demand from the growing Asian population, from vegetarians and vegans seeking a meat substitute, and from shoppers who now have heard enough information to give this big fruit a try.”
Jackson Berkley says summer is a great time to promote jackfruit for barbeques, luaus and tiki parties.
“Shoppers have heard about jackfruit ‘pulled pork’ sandwiches and tacos, so you can merchandise with barbeque sauce and salsa, or make it the center of your tropical fruit display,” she says.