Edible Arrangements is ramping up its growth across the globe and, in the meantime, increasing its focus on its Edible to Go quick-serve option.

The Wallingford, Connecticut–based company, which became well known for its fruit arrangements after it launched in 1999, is aiming to open 150 stores in 2011 and 200 stores in 2012.

Tariq Farid, founder and CEO of Edible Arrangements, says the company will strike a balance between opening traditional Edible Arrangements units and those with the Edible to Go concept.

Edible to Go, which offers dipped fruits, salads, and smoothies alongside the regular arrangements, gives customers another reason to visit an Edible Arrangements store, Farid says.

“We’re looking to attract more traffic,” Farid says. “To our surprise, we get a good amount of traffic into our stores. People want to come in, they want to see how things happen, they want to experience the arrangement, they want to pick something up quick.”

Farid says the Edible to Go concept has improved the systems of the traditional Edible Arrangements operation. Walk-in arrangement orders are more welcome now, he says, and can be fulfilled in as little as 5–10 minutes.

“As we’ve gone into this quick serve, it’s only helped us on the Edible Arrangements part to become more responsive to our customers, to become more available with our products, and to take freshness to a whole new height,” he says.

“Previously, we were comfortable with [taking orders on the] Internet and the telephone and having some time [to prepare the arrangements].”

Edible Arrangements has opened roughly 1,000 stores internationally in its 12 years of operation. It started franchising in 2001.

In its new expansion efforts, Farid says, Edible Arrangements is focusing more on premium, high-traffic sites that were previously too expensive for franchisees.

“We have some areas where we have a lot of demand and we’ve created more demand,” he says, noting that TV advertisements and other marketing efforts have increased the brand’s exposure. “So there is opportunity for us or prospective franchisees.”

By Sam Oches

Denise Lee Yohn: QSR's Marketing Guru, Growth, News, Edible Arrangements