Produce Talk

FEBRUARY 23, 2017
Volume 28, Issue 8


St. Patrick was a patron saint and national apostle of Ireland who is credited with bringing Christianity to Ireland.  St. Patrick described himself as a most humble minded man, pouring forth a continuous song of praise of thanks to his Maker for having chosen him as the instrument whereby multitudes who had worshipped idols and unclean things had become the people of God.  He is also known for driving the snakes from Ireland.  It is true, there are no snakes in Ireland, but there probably never have been.  The island was separated from the rest of the continent at the end of the Ice Age.  Driving the snakes from Ireland was probably symbolic of the end to pagan practices.

St. Patrick’s Day has come to be associated with everything Irish; anything green and gold, shamrocks and luck.  For those who celebrate its intended meaning, St. Patrick’s Day is a traditional day for spiritual renewal and offering prayers for missionaries worldwide.  The reason St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated on March 17th; it’s believed March 17, 460A.D. is when he died.

The Legend of the Shamrock – The encyclopedia Britannica says it’s any of several similar plants whose leaves are divided into three leaflets.  The most common is the wood sorrel shamrock (which is what Crosset offers as a shamrock).  According to the Irish legend, St. Patrick chose the shamrock plant because of its three leaflets symbolizing the Church’s Holy Trinity.

The Legend of the Blarney Stone – According to the Irish legend, anyone who kisses it is given the gift of eloquence and the ability to influence people with fair words and soft speech without offending.  To kiss the real stone is quite a feat.  You have to sit with your back to the stone lean back while a friends holds your legs and feet, lower yourself until you head is even with the stone.

Saint Patrick’s Day in your store may or may not be a big deal.  If your store is in an Irish community, it is a big deal.  Even if your store isn’t in an Irish community, we think you need to merchandise for every holiday to maximize sales and Gross Profits. 

In the Department - Explore every green possibility.  Add green grapes and kiwi fruit (cut & over wrapped) to your promotion lineup.  Promote green snacks like guacamole and pistachios.  Invite your shoppers to fill a “bag-o-greens” from your variety lettuce section.  Build a big cabbage display and make sure you tie it in with the meat department’s corned beef.  You can offer golden ripe bananas, or Granny Smith or Gold Delicious apples.  Promote the “Luck of’ the Irish” – build an ethnic theme around Irish meals.  Promote a prepared entrée you don’t ordinarily offer, like stuffed cabbage, fried green tomatoes and build a secondary display in the meat department with cabbage next to corned beef.

In the Floral Shoppe – You need to take every opportunity to sell shamrocks, hydrangeas and St. Patrick’s Day bouquets.  Crosset will have several for you to choose from. Decorate the department and go all out for sales. Capture the St. Patrick’s Day spirit with decorations.  The Hubert Company, Harrison, Ohio offers an assortment of decorations including: leprechauns, fans, shamrocks, pots of gold and garland.  Use green and gold streamers and hang signs that remind your customers that it’s Saint Patrick’s Day, March 17th, 2017. 

The idea is to create some excitement in your department. Let your customers know that your department changes all the time, that you don’t have old product in your department, and that you want and appreciate their business.  Any holiday can increase traffic in your store and you must set your department to capture the extra sales.  In the middle of winter, things can get pretty dull with our presentation so we must guard against it.  We need to be constantly changing the department around, offering your customers the freshest, best quality product available every day. 


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Training new personnel takes time and resources. Keeping experienced staff up-to-date on new produce trends requires time and resources too.

Training new personnel takes time and resources. Keeping experienced staff up-to-date on new produce trends requires time and resources too.

Training new personnel takes time and resources. Keeping experienced staff up-to-date on new produce trends requires time and resources too.



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