HEBER CITY, Utah — Day's Market gives an upright refrigerated juice case much of the credit for pushing its total produce sales up by double digits recently.
The six-foot-tall, five-deck display case, holding a large variety of juices from Bolthouse Farms, Naked Juice, Odwalla and others, as well as some trendy teas, has been positioned right at the entrance to the produce aisle.
As of last month, the store, which is supplied by Associated Food Stores, Salt Lake City, chalked up a 13% year-to-date increase in its produce sales.
“A little of that 13% is just normal growth from the year before, but I'd say 10% can be attributed to the new juice case and the fact that we've been able to spread out a little more,” Chris Hummer, produce manager, told SN.
“We carried these juices before, but just had them stuck in among the produce items. We had about 15 SKUs then, and now we've been able to double SKUs to at least 30.”
The store's location, just a couple of miles from an Olympic training camp — part of the 2002 Olympics compound — brings in trainees and coaches looking for healthy fare, and the juice case at the head of the produce aisle offers them convenience, Hummer said.
“We're also near recreation areas, near the mountains, so skiers and campers and fishermen come by here to pick things up on their way to where they're going.”
Some remodeling — or, more accurately, repositioning — also has benefited the produce department.
By taking out one table and four stools and pushing farther into the adjacent deli department's floor space, the produce department picked up an extra 40 linear feet, which has enabled it to merchandise product more effectively.
“We didn't actually add anything except the juice case, but it allowed us to spread [merchandise] out more so it's more readily visible. And that gives the impression that we have more variety,” Hummer said.
“Customers actually see things they apparently hadn't seen before. I've had customers comment that they're glad we're carrying dried mushrooms and chopped garlic now, but we'd had those for years.”
If customers ever had a complaint previously, Hummer said, it was that there wasn't enough variety in produce. Now, a few months after the re-merchandising, customers keep commenting on how welcome the additional variety is.
The space taken from deli, plus the space gained in the produce cases by putting bottled juice in the new upright case, has made room for two or three facings of some items, instead of just one, thus giving those items more prominence, Hummer explained.
Just a little more space in the aisle, too, enables customers to stand back and take a little more into their sweep of vision.