Mushrooms, tomatoes and prepacked salads – a vegetable goldmine

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 6th May 2010

Research for vegetable industry body AUSVEG has found that pre-packed salads, tomatoes and mushrooms sell at up to five times the price per kilogram (kg) of other fresh vegetables.

AUSVEG Communications Manager Hugh Tobin said that the price difference was a result of value-adding achieved by varying portion sizes, promoting extra varieties and additional pre-preparation options.

Mushrooms, for example, sell around $20 per kilogram, compared to $3.50 for the fresh vegetable category overall.

“Understanding the vegetable market and the drivers behind consumer behaviour are important factors for vegetable growers in making business decisions about new product development options and value adding,” Mr Tobin said.

Mushrooms offered consumers 12 different products in a variety of sizes and sliced/unsliced, while pre-packed salads provided consumers with a range of extra varieties to purchase.

“Those vegetable commodities which do add real value for consumers receive a significantly higher return in terms of retail value,” Mr Tobin said.

“This is an opportunity for growers to get an overall picture of the market and to better understand the volumes and value of the different distribution channels.”

AUSVEG’s report, Veginsights, was produced by agribusiness market analyst freshlogic as part of the Vegetable Industry Development Program (VIDP).  Copies of the report are available from AUSVEG.