Cut and dried – halting the decline in dried fruit sales

The UK’s leading dried fruit businesses have come together in a bid to dispel consumer myths around the consumption of dried fruit.

The Dried Fruit Alliance (DFA), consisting of Whitworths, Sun Maid, Californian Raisin Administrative Committee, the California Prune Board and the National Dried Fruit Trade Association, aims to re-educate consumers about the perceptions of the category, such as dried fruit being bad for dental health, for which there is no medical evidence.

Decline has been relatively modest currently at around -2.3% but has continued for the past few years, DFA told Better Retailing Magazine. However, this is contradictory to other categories with similar natural, unprocessed and high nutrition categories such as nuts or seeds, both seeing around 10% year on year over the past few years.

Vine fruit (raisins and sultanas) and tree fruit (apricots, prunes, dates and figs) are the best-sellers. A 30g portion counts towards the five-a-day recommendation, while most dried fruit is a good source of fibre and contains nutrients such as vitamin A, potassium, copper and iron.

With a combined market value of £277m, DFA is working with a host of healthcare professionals to raise awareness of the health benefits of dried fruit.

A recent event bought together industry experts to discuss scientific research studies in relation to dried fruit, covering topics including dental health, gut health and snacking advice.

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