Florida’s Natural Growers, a citrus cooperative out of Lake Wales, Florida, exports Florida citrus juices to over 51 countries around the world. Part of their 2015 marketing strategy was to focus more on Panama due to growth in both the supermarkets and food service sector.
Florida’s Natural Growers included Panama in their application for Southern U.S. Trade Association’s 50% CostShare Program and were able to receive 50% reimbursement for product sampling, in-store advertising (floor graphics, shelf talkers, shelf danglers) and outdoor advertising that promoted their brand in Panama. As a result, their case volumes in Panama rose 34% from 2014.
In Panama specifically, the branded advertising and product demonstrations that were executed using SUSTA/Market Access Program funding helped Florida’s Natural Growers to educate consumers about the consistently high quality of FNG’s 100% Florida USA not from concentrate orange and grapefruit juices. Florida’s Natural Growers’ export markets continue to deliver growth, although at a much slower pace given the very strong dollar. CY 2016 will be a very challenging year in those markets where the dollar has appreciated most. Luckily Panama’s currency is the US dollar, so the strengthening dollar is a variable that has not resulted in significantly higher pricing in Panama. They anticipate another 10% of growth in 2016.