Whatever happened to cauliflower power?

Dive Brief:

  • Despite numerous food experts praising the benefits of cauliflower, the vegetable was nowhere to be found in the top 20 list of Instagram’s most hashtagged foods, according to Quartz.
  • While changing climate conditions have decreased cauliflower’s production in the last several years, the average retail price per pound hasn’t wavered much, a strong indicator that demand isn’t driving up the cost of cauliflower, even when supply is low.
  • Cauliflower prices have remained relatively stable through the years, fluctuating between $1.35 and $1.50 a pound since 2014. 

Dive Insight:

Even though cauliflower has been hailed as the next big vegetable craze due to its versatility and taste, data shows that it’s just not resonating with consumers the way many expected.

It could be that the vegetable already had its day in the sun and has peaked. According to a Nielsen Perishables report from last year, cauliflower posted an 8% annual dollar sales growth in the five-year period of 2011 to 2016, up to $357 million in annual sales as of April 2016. Sales since, however, have been flat.

One way to boost interest in cauliflower is to come up with new ideas for the vegetable. For example, Green Giant’s introduced of fresh Cauliflower Crumbles early last year, which can be used as a pizza or omelette topping. In September, the company also started selling frozen Riced Veggies (made with cauliflower) and Mashed Cauliflower.

Innovative preparation ideas are also a way for companies to sell more of the vegetable, and grocers can highlight green and purple varieties of cauliflower to add more eye-catching displays to the store and garner interest. 

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Filed Under: Ingredients Marketing
Top image credit: Liz West