Strawberries are a staple today – the No. 4 fruit in the U.S. last year with nearly $2.7 billion in sales, according to the latest FreshFacts on Retail report from the United Fresh Produce Association.

Go back about 50 years, and strawberries were much less prevalent. I had a hard time finding ads and display photos of the fruit as I reviewed The Packer’s Ideas in Merchandising, 1968-1972.

Of course, the absence of strawberries from the book was because strawberries used to be only a seasonal item. Now you can find them year-round no matter where you live.

Another topic in strawberries is packaging, as discussion grows about the amount of plastic used in various everyday items, from straws to grocery store bags to the clamshells that protect various fruit.

I recently visited a Lazy Acres Natural Market store in San Diego that had strawberries in a couple of different packaging options, cartons and clamshells among them.

What do you think is the future for produce and packaging?


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