Last week I was shopping at my local natural foods store and saw a special price on mangoes. They were large, beautiful, and when ripened, they were the most sweet and tasty mangoes I’ve ever had. So, the next week I went back looking to pick up a few more. No luck. They were all gone. I did a pretty thorough search, but did not see any other mangoes in the store. Were they on special because they were the last ones of the mango season? Unless it’s items like apples, oranges or peaches, most of us are a little too busy with our lives to have our calendars marked with when our favorite fruits are winding down.
This experience made me start thinking more about fruits and their seasons. When a season begins, retailers will often present a large display with a sign calling attention to the new seasonal fruits. But unfortunately, there is never any way for the typical shopper to tell when the season is coming to a close. If I had known that there would be no more mangoes in the store the following week, I would have surely stocked up on quite a few more. The same is true of Honeycrisp apples, Concord grapes and Comice pears – a few of my seasonal favorites. I’m always sad when these fruits mysteriously disappear from the produce section. I would love to know when the seasons for these items are coming to an end so that I can stock up on a few extra. I’m guessing I’m not the only shopper out there who is equally interested in when a product’s season ends, as well as when it begins.
Seems like this would be a good Marketing/Merchandising strategy for retailers looking to quickly move out the last of the season produce and get us shoppers to fill our carts with a few extra items. So that’s my request/recommendation to retailers; how about putting up “Last of Season” or “End of Season” signs to let us know? It seems like a win-win for everyone. If you can get your customers as excited about the end of a season as you do its beginning, then you really have something going on!