Does Edible Arrangements Have Staying Power?

On my way home from work, I often pass by Edible Arrangements (EA) in Vernon Hills – about 20 minutes from my abode. For those of you who don’t know, Edible Arrangements is similar to a florist but instead of flower arrangements, they sell edible arrangements using fruit and other goodies.

According to their website, EA currently features three arrangements range in price from $48 to $131 (25% off sale on the most expensive item). True confessions, I typically purchase a bouquet every few years which normally retails for $75 – any less money may be construed as an inferior gift (for those new to EA, brace yourself for sticker shock). A good value for $75?

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Mind you, it’s a great idea giving a bouquet of fruit and chocolate as a gift and is typically happily received but at what cost? I know some fruit such as berries and strawberries can be quite expensive, especially off-season but I still don’t see the justification to charging tens of dollars for a bouquet of fruit. Again, when I use them, it’s hard for me to focus on anything besides the price tag. Do others feel that way? It rather reminds me of Disneyworld, you know it’s going to cost you a lot of money and you just open your wallet and look the other way to avoid the pain!

I’ll be the first to say that giving fresh fruit and chocolate as a present is a nice change of pace from flowers although with flowers, you have more flexibility. You can order a nice bouquet and have it delivered for $35 to $40, which is certainly, much less than most of those fruit and chocolate arrangements at Edible Arrangements. Staying on the flower theme, to save money, you could purchase a decent bouquet of flowers at Costco or your local grocer for no more than $15-20. What flexibility or alternatives do you have regarding fruit and chocolate besides paying a premium price with EA?

Don’t get me wrong, EA provides a nice change of pace from flowers but with such a competitive marketplace with edible presents, I’m surprised my nearest Edible Arrangements is still in business. Perhaps they contract with certain corporations or organizations for special events and birthdays.

Being philosophical, I sometimes hear an excellent idea that has potential to be successful in the current marketplace although key business questions need to be addressed. Can you capture a certain segment of the population who will do regular business with you regardless of the economy? What’s the retail price of this good idea? What are the wholesale costs, profit margins and employee costs? Is it scalable? Is it recession proof? If it’s a hot item and trends upward fast, will it eventually trend downward as quickly as it ascended? So may be the case with EAs. A great, healthy idea but is it sustainable long-term?

I could be wrong, but from a practical perspective, it just doesn’t add up in my mind. Do you agree? Does it add up to you?





One Comment
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