Sales of organic fresh produce were up 3% in 2022, reaching $9.4 billion, according to the 2022 Organic Produce Performance Report from Organic Produce Network and Category Partners. Volume, however, dropped 3.7% for the year.
Total fresh produce sales rose 7.3% in 2022, while overall volume decreased by 1.3%. Organic fresh produce accounted for 12% of all fresh produce sales and 7% of all fresh produce volume.
Dollar sales rose for 13 of the top 20 organic produce categories, and onions led growth with a 15.4% increase. In contrast, most (14) of the categories experienced declines in volume, the largest being lettuce at -12.7%.
Rising prices contributed to sales increases for both conventional and organic fresh produce in 2022 — conventional prices were up 9.2% (compared to +6.1% in 2021) and organic prices rose 7.0% (compared to +4.5% in 2021).
At $1.55 per pound, the price gap between conventional and organic fresh produce in 2022 was the largest it’s been over the last four years.
“In an inflationary time period,” said Tom Barnes, president of Category Partners, “it is important for organic producers to understand how their pricing impacts behavior among various consumer segments and to reach those consumers with the health and value benefits associated with organics.”