The USA’s Organic Produce Network has reported that the total organic fresh produce sales in the first quarter of 2021 grew 9.3% or by $2.2 billion, according to the organisations Q1 Organic Produce Performance Report.
The sales built on the growth of 2020 from March last year, with increased sales across the whole sector, with more home cooking due to eating out venues being closed due to lockdown.
With restaurants reopening there is some expectation of changes in food purchasing in the coming months.
The 9.3% growth compares favourably with non organic sales which grew at 2.9%, whilst organic produce grew by 5.7% in volume and non organic declined by 0.6%.
“Once again, sales of organic fresh produce continue to be a major growth opportunity for retailers across the country. At the same time, as the country enters a post-COVID environment, with restaurants reopening and other foodservice options available, it appears the double-digit growth rate will be slowing,” said Matt Seeley, CEO of Organic Produce Network.
Of the top 10 organic categories, the largest driver for the period was packaged salads followed by berries, then apples, herbs and spices, carrots, lettuce, bananas, citrus, tomatoes and potatoes.
The report used Nielsen retail scan data covering total food sales and outlets in the first three months of the year.