Company Updates

It’s Stone Fruit Season: A Juicy Dive into America’s Sizzling Summer Favorites

Instacart

Instacart

Jun 6, 2024

As the warm breeze of summer rolls in, it’s not just the sunshine and blue skies that get us excited—it’s also the arrival of stone fruit season! From June to September, the orchards are bustling and the produce aisles are blooming with vibrant and juicy options. 

Adding to the excitement, a recent survey of over 2,000 U.S. adults conducted online by The Harris Poll reveals some delightful preferences around stone fruit: over 3 in 5 Americans (62%) are most looking forward to indulging in peaches this summer, indicating a strong national affinity for this fuzzy fruit. However, only 29% of Americans express a love for the peach’s characteristic fuzz.

Let’s explore how America’s shopping carts overflow with these summer gems.

Peak Seasons Per Stone Fruit

Whether it’s the tangy sweetness of a mango or the lush depth of a plum, each stone fruit has its time to shine according to Instacart sales data:

  • Mangoes kickstart the season in early June, setting the tone for a flavorful summer.
  • Apricots own the stage by late June, perfectly tart and ready for your picnic snacks.
  • Cherries burst into full bloom by late July, and then surprise us with an encore in late January.
  • Nectarines, Peaches, and Plums step into the spotlight in early August, offering their juicy, sweet flesh to refresh those hot summer days.
  • Pluots dazzle us by late August with their unique flavor profiles that blend the best of plums and apricots.

America’s Favorite Stone Fruit States

Stone fruit love isn’t distributed equally across the states:

  • New Mexico is the reigning champ, loving its stone fruit 30% more than the national average. New Mexicans have a particularly sweet spot for Apricots, buying them at a staggering 229% more than other states!
  • Minnesota and New Jersey aren’t far behind, with purchases 22% above the national average. Minnesota’s cherry adoration is notable at 53% higher than average.
  • Washington DC shows a keen preference for Mangoes, purchasing them 51% more often.
  • On the west coast, California craves Nectarines, with orders 76% more frequent than elsewhere.

Surprisingly, Georgia, famous for its peaches, orders them 5% less than the national average, but transitions its taste to plums, with 28% more orders—seems like there’s a new stone fruit sheriff in town!

Unusual Shopping Cart Pairings

It appears stone fruits have a particularly persuasive power when they’re in a shopping cart—they encourage shoppers to pair them with some interesting choices:

  • Yellow Peaches demand gourmet pairings; Burrata is purchased 550% more often with Yellow Peaches than it is overall, and Whole Salmon is 629% more likely to be purchased when Yellow Peaches are in the cart compared to average.
  • Yellow Nectarines inspire a mix of health and comfort–their presence increasing purchases of Popsicles by 139% and Smoked Salmon by 186%.
  • Plums seem to bring out a taste for Mediterranean cuisine, boosting sales of Traditional Yogurt, Dried Dates, and Pistachios.
  • Pluots invite an interest in eclectic snacking with Mochi, Pressed Juices, and more.
  • Cherries pair delightfully with Prepared Shrimp and Croissants, proving that fruit and fancy feasts go hand in hand.
  • The tropical vibes of Ataulfo Mangoes see a surge in Canned Coconut Milk and Cream, Tofu, and Paneer, suggesting some serious culinary combinations.

Stone Fruit’s Unique Preferences

According to our survey…

  • In the great ‘ape-ricot’ vs. ‘app-ricot’ debate, 63% of Americans lean towards the latter pronunciation, proving that sometimes, the majority indeed rules on how to sweet-talk a fruit.
  • Following Peaches, Cherries (49%), Mangoes (40%), Plums (35%), and Nectarines (30%) are among the top stone fruits Americans are looking forward to eating this summer. 
  • The majority of Americans (85%) enjoy eating stone fruits fresh, while 31% like their stone fruits in baked goods and 26% like them in or jam/compote.

As we savor the juicy offerings of stone fruit season, it’s clear that these fruits are more than just snacks—they’re staples that inspire creativity in the kitchen and curiosity in our shopping habits. Whether it’s the richness of a peach or the tartness of a cherry, each bite offers a burst of summer, and apparently, a reason to try something new in the cart, too!

Celebrate the season – dive into the stone fruit sensation and maybe find your next favorite food pair in the process. Happy summer snacking! 🍑🍒🥭

Survey Method: This survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Instacart from May 28 – 30, 2024 among 2,090 adults ages 18 and older.  The sampling precision of Harris online polls is measured by using a Bayesian credible interval.  For this study, the sample data is accurate to within +/- 2.5 percentage points using a 95% confidence level.

Instacart

Instacart

Instacart is the leading grocery technology company in North America, partnering with more than 1,400 national, regional, and local retail banners to deliver from more than 80,000 stores across more than 14,000 cities in North America. To read more Instacart posts, you can browse the company blog or search by keyword using the search bar at the top of the page.

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