By Andy Nelson
January 28, 2016 | 3:53 pm EST
The National Mango Board is launching a program to get ripe fruit in the hands of consumers.
The aim of the Orlando-based board’s Ripe and Ready to Eat Mango program is to supply shoppers with fruit that is ready to eat right away or within days of purchase, according to a news release.
The program follows extensive research by the board which shows that consumers prefer ripe fruit. In one recent study, about 81% of current mango purchasers said they would definitely or probably consider future purchases if mangoes were ripe.
In response, the board developed several tools to encourage the sale of ripe mangoes, including temperature management protocols and fruit sensory descriptions.
In addition, the board has hired a ripening expert to design, implement and evaluate “ripe and ready” programs for importers, retailers, wholesalers and fresh-cut processors.
“The Ripe and Ready to Eat Mango Program is a great tool for the industry to help overcome mango purchasing barriers for consumers in the U.S.,” Rachel Muñoz, the board’s marketing director, said in the release. “The rewards of programs like this can lead to greater consumer acceptance and considerable growth in the mango category.”
The board has created online content describing the program, available at mango.org/ripening.