Featured, People

3 Minute Mango Expertise: Brian Dey

July 3, 2024

“It’s about romancing the mango”

I love unraveling ideas, discovering truths, appreciating complexities, and sharing information. My new Summer Mango Mania series, 3 Minute Mango Expertise, is designed just for that. This week’s featured guest is totally aligned with my desire to graciously and generously share expertise, insights, ideas, and general knowledge when it comes to all things produce.

We equally align in our avant-garde style of both generating and executing ideas that many might consider ideas of madness at the onset.  His execution of ideas is typically flawless! He is a fellow Aries, loads of fun and filled with facts, and one of my all-time favorite produce experts.

He is the person from whom I have gained the most valuable insights in terms of merchandising, especially mango merchandising. We have worked together for the past nine years—he with Four Seasons and I with Crespo Organic. Together, we have navigated several Summer Mango Manias, numerous Cinco de Mayo #CelebrateMexico #CelebrateMangoes, and many Mango Cutting and Tasting Demos.

He is Mr. Brian Dey, and I am deeply appreciative of this learning relationship. I am always thrilled to share his thoughts and ideas especially as they pertain to mangoes. As with most useful insights, his advice is helpful across countless commodities and in life in general!

Brian is the Senior Merchandiser and Natural Stores Coordinator for Four Seasons Produce in Ephrata, PA. With over 35 years of experience at the retail level of produce and over 25 years at Four Seasons, Brian has worked in almost every position in the produce department—from produce clerk to produce manager. At Four Seasons, he has held various merchandising roles, including Produce Coordinator and Produce Merchandiser. Now, as Senior Merchandiser, he attributes his success to an “extreme passion for produce and achieving excellence in growing relations and building sales with a substantial focus on in-store training.” His extensive experience at the store level, across multiple and diverse venues, provides him with the insight and relationship skills needed to create in-store success for the numerous products Four Seasons Produce offers its customers.

Brian has honed his skills over the years by taking a hands-on approach to helping independent retailers, natural food stores, food co-ops, and other organic grocers drive their sales and see what’s possible. He believes the pathway to driving fresh produce consumption starts by educating the future “front-line leaders” of the produce industry on the fundamentals of running a successful produce department

In this 18-minute conversation with Brian, we covered a lot of interesting topics on the art of the mango display. We discussed how to drive the category with a plan and goal setting, noting that “the end result, that thing you are aiming for, and a plan to get there, is the most important factor toward success.” Brian is data-driven but admits we need more data, which we don’t always have. His goal is to create an experience for consumers with a display, introducing them to new and tantalizing tastes.

The follow-through of this tantalization involves educating consumers on how to use fruit, how to cut it, and what it tastes like. Consumer usage drives his merchandising. Sharing success and success stories extends the reach of displays. I admire him and his work.

The essence of a successful mango display, as Brian describes,  and I really wish I would have coined this term, “it’s about romancing the mango.”

PS Brian, I will be creating a MANGO GEEK SOCIAL CLUB for Summer Mango Mania next year, just you wait!

Take a look at some of his mango romancing HERE.

Take a listen, its 18 minutes, which makes me both a liar and a great marketer.

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