In its ongoing efforts to minimize barriers to mango purchase, the National Mango Board launched an initiative to rename ataulfo mangoes after a common descriptor of their flavor: honey.
A year later, the renaming is going strong with retailers, said Tammy Wiard, retail program manager for the Orlando, Fla.-based board.
Honey mangoes represent a little less than 20% of all mangoes imported into the U.S.
While popular with those familiar with the flavor, ataulfo faced hurdles with both retailers and consumers, who love the variety, but struggle to pronounce the name.
“The National Mango Board’s goal was to help consumers overcome this barrier and increase the purchase of this variety,” Wiard said.
“Renaming it to honey gave the superfruit a much more user-friendly name that consumers are comfortable asking for and purchasing.”
Wiard said retailers have had a positive response to the new name, saying it gave them more material to describe the mango, in an easy-to-digest fashion.
“People expect a sweeter and creamy taste based on the name, and they get it,” Wiard said.
Not everyone is sweet on the renaming, however.
Crespo Organic Mangoes, Rio Rico, Ariz., offers materials to help consumers become more familiar with ataulfo mangoes, said Nissa Pierson, marketing and communications representative.
Crespo offers point-of-sale materials and information to celebrate the Mexican heritage of ataulfo mangoes, encouraging consumers to give the pronunciation on their own.
Chris Ciruli, partner in Ciruli Bros., Rio Rico, Ariz., markets its ataulfo as Champagne brand.
He said ultimately, retailers have plenty of marketing resources and should call it what they want.
“It is the chains who are ultimately deciding how they market the fruit,” Ciruli said.
“We have seen a range from yellow mango to honey to ataulfo.”
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