NEW YORK -- Now is the time retailers can start to move Center Store products via gift baskets designed with sporting, holiday and other special events in mind.
"If a store wants to increase sales, especially during the fourth quarter, I think a supermarket could definitely go after the gift basket customer," said Bernadette Graziosa, owner of Mrs. G's Gift Baskets, Waterbury, Conn. She spoke with SN after a presentation on corporate gift basket sales, part of the NASFT Summer Fancy Food Show held here earlier this month.
Any big company or nonprofit organization in town, real estate brokers or car dealerships make good targets, panelists on the tour said. Donating a gift basket to be raffled off as a fundraiser is also a good way to get attention and residual sales, they said.
LaBonne's Epicure Market in Watertown and Woodbury, Conn., independent IGA-supplied stores located near hers, do good business in baskets, according to Graziosa.
Diane Kenny, who makes up the gift baskets at LaBonne's Watertown store, said the demand for gift baskets has grown. "We do three to seven every day, I'd say. It's mostly for sympathy, a few get-well. We can do a breakfast basket, a snack basket, an Italian basket."
Food Emporium, based in the Bronx, N.Y., and Kings Super Markets, Parsippany, N.J., display themed gift baskets, such as ones filled with baby items, or barbecue items, in some of their stores.