Michael Vesely, senior produce buyer at Jewel-Osco, has been selected as the 2017 Mango Retailer of the Year by the National Mango Board (NMB). Vesely was formally recognized for his above and beyond efforts to offer strong, consistent support to the mango industry, and deliver outstanding promotion results, during the NMB’s annual industry reception at PMA’s recently concluded Fresh Summit in New Orleans.
Selected from over 100 NMB mango.org retail partners from across the United States, Jewel-Osco routinely over-performed in all mango sales and volume and is a leader both regionally and nationally in mango volume sold per week.
“Being selected as the Mango Retailer of the Year has been a tremendous honor; second only to seeing year over year sales increases,” said Vesely.
“Having a Midwest retailer as the recipient of this prestigious award is a testament to mango growth in the U.S.,” said Valda Coryat, NMB’s director of marketing. “This sends us a clear message – there is a mango for all seasons and they are gaining momentum in this under-indexed consumption area of the country.”
Jewel-Osco also ensures mango promotions are implemented 12 months of the year which feature unique and timely seasonal opportunities that often incorporate multiple varieties, fresh-cut and case sales. The Itasca, Ill.-based division of Albertsons’ also utilizes and reinforce mango messaging in its print and online magazines, newsletters and social media posts and consistently provides multi-tiered communication among its teams, inclusive of registered dieticians and marketing.
Vesely drove total department sales by promoting mangoes while not deflating other categories in the department, and attracted new customers to Jewel-Osco through the ongoing promotion of mangos.
Taking advantage of NMB’s many tools to help create retail excitement, Vesely said, the displays his teams have built across Jewel’s 187 stores “have been amazing. Working with the NMB’s retail account managers Katie Manetti, Tim Beerup and Wendy McManus have really energized the team and shown them what mangos can do for the produce department. We look forward to continuing to develop our relationship with not only the NMB but also with our valued vendor community.”