2021 Year in Review
2021 was another year of tremendous performance by the avocado industry, despite large impacts from pandemic restrictions, ongoing supply chain challenges, shoppers moving amongst multi-channel options, and large production capability from every source of supply.
In the end, the industry moved a new record volume of 2.837 billion pounds through the chain, up from 2.726 billion in 2020. That was an increase of 4%, despite the challenges noted above. These numbers show the resiliency and dogged determination of an industry that will not let a little roadblock, or three or four get in the way of providing our tasty, healthy, and nutritious product to market, and into the waiting mouths of avocado lovers everywhere.
This drove per capita consumption levels to the highest ever, coming in nationally at 8.55 pounds per capita in the U.S. The largest PCC level increases were recorded in South Central region at 7.2%, Southeast region at 5.8%, and California at 3.5%, pushing their nation leading PCC to 18.5 pounds – remarkable. The Northeast numbers also continued to grow, by 3% in this population rich area, a good sign for future opportunity.
Retail pricing was relatively flat year on year, moving from $1.09 per fruit in 2020 to $1.11 per fruit in 2021, but any increase, in line with increased volume, is a good sign indeed.
As we are all aware, everyone in the chain struggled with supply chain issues, whether exporter, importer, transportation provider, distributor, to retailers & food service handlers, each had their own challenges to overcome, to keep supplies fresh, moving, and available at the end user level and to keep the whole system moving. It was a herculean task, and coordination among supply chain partners was key to the success of the entire system. Port slowdowns, truck shortages, increased fuel costs, and inflation pressures were the hand we were dealt, but the industry kept pushing and grinding, to a record-breaking conclusion. Congratulations to all those that had a hand in this effort.
In other areas, e-commerce continues to play a larger part in our collective go-to-market strategy and needs to be nourished and funded to make sure it is a competitive advantage for us in the market. Bagged fruit is still a growing, and larger part of the category, and it too needs to be promoted & encouraged as an important component of our market reach. Health and nutrition continue to be key drivers of our consumer purchase levers, and our promoting the nutritional benefits of avocados needs to be included in our marketing efforts.
Finally, sustainability continues to grow in importance to our key customers, and HAB is currently moving forward with the Avocado Sustainability Center. To create the premier provider of sustainability information, data, and research for the industry. We will keep you posted as we progress, and to provide important customer and consumer data and information regarding sustainability that we can all access, for our collective future success.
Latest “Bagged Avocado Sales Drivers” study identifies underlying trends of driving bagged avocado sales.
Timely updates on HAB’s plan to share the avocado sustainability story is now streaming. Learn about the Avocado Sustainability Center, a new central source for information, data and research.
HAB’s Board Leadership Development Program (BOLD) was specifically developed and implemented by the avocado industry to attract, inform, educate, and turn out volunteer leaders for our industry’s many boards.