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Food City's Snowman Helps Sell Fruit Baskets

Food City's Snowman Helps Sell Fruit Baskets

LOUISA, Ky. ­— Food City, a K-VA-T-owned store here, is bringing customers into the produce and floral departments this year with a floor-to-ceiling snowman set right between the departments.

"People are coming in just to see the gigantic snowman they've heard about, and they're buying things while they're here," the store's produce manager Lequitte Perry told SN this week.

An attractive display of produce, floral items and other fresh products has been built around Mr. Snowy's base.

Perry is there now assembling fruit baskets and talking to customers. "We're selling more this year. We have a nice variety of [fruit basket] sizes, ranging in price from $7.99 to $46.99."

Perry said the stand-out best seller falls in the mid-price range at $24.99. "It's our 'Fruit Supreme,' piled high with oranges, apples, grapes, bananas and grapefruits. People are spending money again. They're not extravagant, but I see a difference from last year. They're buying more," Perry said.

Perry had a whole team, including her supervisor James Spears and store manager Adam Baldridge, as well as produce and floral associates, helping her create the snowman out of bales of chicken wire, and pieces of white tissue wrapping paper. The paper was stuffed into the holes in the chicken wire. Mr. Snowy's eyes and mouth are real pieces of coal. Quite appropriate, Perry said, since the coal industry in this area is big.

Perry and her team can be counted on to do something creative for the holidays. Last year, they built a huge ski slope in the produce department with swaths of quilting cotton. The year before that, it was a "Christmas House" which the team constructed partially from local wood.

In 2009, Perry was one of 21 produce managers from across the country honored by the United Fresh Produce Association "for their unique efforts to increase produce consumption through merchandising, special displays, promotions, customer services."