Go “Bag to School” in Retail with West Pak’s Best-Selling Lil’ Cados

West Pak’s Avo Experts share four fresh retail ideas with smaller avocados.

August is Back to School Month and is the perfect time to highlight the green goodness that avocados bring for kids and families. And what better way to do it than with West Pak’s best-selling branded bag, Lil’ Cados.

Follow along as West Pak’s sales team shares how these bagged avocados make the ideal “back to school” option for retailers and their customers. Add that to West Pak’s marketing benefits and score an A for avocado before the first day of class.

Idea #1: Bagged avocado purchases are increasing due to convenience and demand

The demand for avocados is ever-increasing. According to a study by The Hass Avocado Board (HAB), the avocado category has grown over the past several years, bolstering it to one of the largest in the produce industry. From 2016-2019, the category has seen a boost in households that purchase avocados and realized a $250M (or 16 percent) increase in sales.

Currently, shoppers can buy individual avocados individually from a bulk bin or bagged in any one of many configurations. The same HAB study found that households that were bagged-exclusive increased 2.1 percent while bulk-exclusive decreased by 5.9 percent. Interestingly, the number of households that purchased a combination of bulk and bagged avocados grew by 23.3 percent. 

In the last year of the study, bulk avocados made up the majority of category purchases. What has also grown is the number of shoppers who prefer the convenience, and likely the price point, of bagged avocados. The proof? The purchases of bagged avocados increased at three times the rate of bulk. 

Idea #2: Bags come in “family-friendly” sizes

There are many configurations and brands of bagged avocados available to retailers, each offering the same great taste, eating quality, and nutritional value for which the avocado is known. From minis for smaller servings and jumbos for larger meals or needs, regionally sourced versions for specific tastes, varieties by demographic, and conventional and organic options, all with the grab-and-go bag convenience consumers love. However, for back to school, hands down, the little guy goes to the head of the class.

“If you’re looking for something exciting to do for back to school, or you are looking for an uptick in your avocado category, we highly encourage you to look at Lil’ Cados if you don’t already carry them in your lineup,” explains West Pak Avocado Vice President of Sales and Business Development Joe Nava. “This is our most successful bag this year!”

Lil’ Cados involve small fruit that comes in fun, brightly colored packaging, with a kid-friendly recipe right on the back. These avocados are the ideal size for an individual serving for a child or young adult, but there’s still the option to use all the fruit in the bag to make a delicious and healthy family meal.

“In addition to the Lil’ Cados being full of fun nutrition, it allows the retailer an opportunity to have a bag that hits a price point for a family that’s shopping on a budget. That’s especially helpful when the kids are going back to school, and parents need to buy so many other things like school clothes, backpacks, binders, pencils, etc. When a family is working within their budget, Lil’ Cados step in with attractive retail and really shine—that’s where we will see the uptick at the store level,” Nava adds.

If Lil’Cados is not at the desired price point or a retailer needs to move the needle with another offering, West Pak’s Value Pak may be the best option. Value Pak is a branded bag of number two grade avocados, which offer the same great taste and nutritional benefits as their premium counterparts, but come with a few lumps, bumps, and even blemishes.

“With this bag, we encourage people to minimize food waste by eating a healthy avocado despite its blemishes. After all, it’s the goodness on the inside that counts,” adds Nava. “Also, if you’re able to provide nutritional value to the shopper that’s on an even thinner budget but at the same time honor our beautiful bags with the Value Pak, we have successfully explained number two avocados to the shopper.” 

Idea #3: Bags are easy to showcase in-store and fun to spotlight on social media & more

The best way to share the goodness of avocados and grow a little green at the same time is for retailers to promote their avo offerings in several ways.

“Lil’ Cados have a great price point and are a quick and easy grab in the store for busy parents,” states West Pak Sales and Business Development team member Chris Wortman. “With many more people coming back into the stores now, displays are essential to grab their attention.” 

Little Shoppers love avos

Little shoppers love avos! This delightful photo, taken by Influencer Gizelle Perry on Instagram, shows her daughter in a West Pak partnered national retailer shopping for avocados during a recent California promotion.

From regional influencer partnerships to enticing in-store avocado destinations, Wortman advises retailers to start promotional efforts in-store with kid-friendly brands and displays that promote fun and excitement. Bright colors, easy-to-reach bags, and POP displays to remind shoppers to get their daily dose of green goodness. 

“QR codes are huge right now,” he adds. “Consider adding one to your display, or even your print material, and direct shoppers to your website or your app. That way, they can cash in on coupons, shopping incentives, or access recipes.” 

QR code or not, cross-promoting with other items is always a good idea. The West Pak team suggests highlighting a recipe and offering the ingredients in one convenient display. To take things further, retailers can showcase bagged avocados and cross-promotions within print and digital store advertisements and through social media for all back-to-school efforts. 

“Another idea,” Wortman adds, “is offering loyalty points. So, when your customer comes in and buys a specific branded bag or cross-promotional offering, they get loyalty points that go back onto their card.” 

An avocado coloring contest can be a fun way to display the goodness of everyone’s favorite green fruit but through the eyes of children. Perhaps it’s a printout of an avocado line drawing or table setting that kids can complete and turn in for prizes either at the store or from home if buying online. Retailers can post the pretty pics by local kids on social media or in-store to show off the excitement avocados bring.

One suggestion from the West Pak team that bodes well for retailers and helps local kids at the same time is donating to nonprofits that benefit local schools or charities. One West Pak retailer chose the Produce for Kids program, which supplies produce to Feeding America and into the hands of families in need in our local communities.

Idea #4: Recipe in a bag

The West Pak sales team suggests that retailers promote bagged avocados on their social feed and the company blog to show customers how avocados make for a healthy snack or meal. And one way to do that is by sharing recipes and serving suggestions.  

After School Snacks w/ Lil’ Cados

With one bag of Lil’ Cados, consumers can easily make convenient after-school snacks for their little munchers. Here are three easy-to-make small avocado recipes that are great promotional material for retailers and pair well with other items in-store:

Kid-Friendly Avocado Toast

Oh, my stars! Have fun with cutouts for a creative way to serve up a wholesome snack or meal.

Veggies & Avocado White Bean Dip

A simple dip with crunchy sides makes for a fulfilling snack with a powerhouse of veggie goodness. 

Tuna & Avocado on Crackers

Add a little crunch as they munch with healthy crackers layered with their favorite toppings. 

“With kids’ health at the forefront, Lil’ Cados plays a vital role by introducing healthy nutritional avocados into daily family meals,” affirms Nava. “Through our family of avocados, West Pak continues to find ways to provide value to our customers. Let us find the right fit for your avocado needs, for back to school and beyond!”