South African retailer Woolworths says there has been an ”exceptional” consumer response to its Flavourburst nectarine brand

Consumers looking for the best in fruit quality and taste are searching for recognisable brands which will be on the shelf for a considerable length of time.

Flavourburst nectarines Woolworths South Africa

When it comes to certain fresh fruit categories, this is easier said than done.

This is particularly the case in stonefruit and table grapes, where there are a plethora of cultivars which are often harvested over a very short packing window, making it difficult to undertake brand development that grabs the attention of consumers.

Leading South African retailer Woolworths has come up with a unique concept in branding which is helping to bridge varieties in fruit categories and offer consumers the promise of excellent taste and quality over a long period.

Woolworths has been the testing ground for new varieties in South Africa for decades. It is often stated that if the new variety makes it onto the retailer’s shelves, growers can export it with confidence to other retailers around the world.

Over time, Woolworths has introduced its new fruit brand endorsement, Flavourburst, on ”exceptional tasting varieties”.

In response to Fruitnet’s inquiries, the Woolworths media office stated that the brand Flavourburst was introduced many years ago for nectarines. “Years ago, the range of nectarines grown locally were not of a high standard,” said a spokesperson.

“They had a relatively high acid content and almost all of them had yellow flesh. With the arrival of international varieties, local producers had access to white fleshed nectarines, as well as low acid and balanced yellow fleshed nectarines.

“We wanted to differentiate the old varieties from the new, and because flavour has always been a pillar of Woolworths Foods, we decided to adopt the Flavourburst trademark,” the spokesperson continued.

“With Flavourburst, we have certain brand values per product. In nectarines, for example, these are based on sugar levels as well as flavour and appearance. They must be consistent.”

Following nectarines, the retailer switched its attention to plums.

“When it comes to plum growing, it is 10 per cent choice of variety and 90 per cent the way they are produced and at what ripeness they are harvested,” the retailer outlined.

”Very few growers can achieve our sugar level and flavour standards – we require our Flavourburst plums to be sweeter and more flavourful.”

Flavourburst was seen as a natural evolution of the company’s foods strategy – to provide customers with choice and a promise of exceptional quality.

Presently the Flavourburst brand includes nectarines, plums, apples, strawberries, blueberries, and soft citrus.

“We are working towards expanding our Flavourburst offering to include fruit from all categories,” Woolworths noted, with the first avocados recently seen on the retailer’s shelves.

Woolworths said that some fruits including table grapes, mangoes and soft citrus have certain varieties with ”magnificent eating quality”, but that are not branded as Flavourburst.

“These fruits, including table grapes, are sold using their variety or trademarked name, such as Cotton Candy or ClemenGold,” the spokesperson stated.

“We believe there is a demand for fruit that is consistently delicious and sustainably grown. There is the misconception that the best fruit is exported, which isn’t the case.

The demand for our Flavourburst branded and special variety fruit is exceptional. We are excited to continue working with our small and dedicated group of growers to expand our offering in the future.”