The United Fresh Foundation’s most recent Fresh Facts Facts on Retail report shows positive dollar and volume sales increase in the first quarter of 2013.

The report shows an increase of 4.9% in average retail price and a 7% increase in average dollar sales for the produce department, and a volume increase of 2% compared to the first quarter of 2012.

Fruit dollar sales increased nearly 8%, and vegetables increased 5.7%. Total volume for fruits and vegetables increased 1.4% and 2.1%.

According to the report, produced in collaboration with Del Monte Fresh Produce, Coral Gables, Fla., and Chicago-based Nielsen Perishables Group, all but two of the top ten fruit and vegetable categories increased volumes.

Average retail prices increased in all but three of the top 10 fruit categories, negatively affecting volume for berries, grapes, pears and stone fruit. The price of grapes increased the most year-over-year, up 28.6%, which corresponded with an 18.1% volume sales decrease during the first quarter.

Onions and lettuce posted the highest dollar growth compared with the first quarter of 2012, and also had the highest price increase compared to the previous year, at 10.4% and 16.4% respectively, according to the report. Onion volume dropped slightly, at 0.3% and potato volume gained 4.3%, despite the price increase.

Fresh-cut fruit was the leader of value-added fruit sales, and increased dollar sales 16.4% and volume sales 15.1%. Jarred and cup fruit decreased in sales dollars 13.6% and volumes 17.9%, with a corresponding 5.3% increase in average retail price.

Organic fruits and vegetables maintained growth in the first quarter, with fruit posting a total dollar growth of 24.4%, price increase of 8.4% and a volume increase of 14.8%.

Vegetables showed a 14.9% increase in dollar sales per store, a 3.9% increase in price, and a 10.7% increase in sales volume.

The complete report is available from the United Fresh Produce Association at