Business of Easter: Experts predict sales of almost $16.5 billion

It's the holiest holiday on the Christian calendar. But Easter is also well-revered in the retail world.

Industry experts predict sales of almost $16.5 billion this year.

"The average person celebrating Easter this year will spend about $140 on everything from candy, flowers, to food and even new clothing items," Kathy Grannis, of the National Retail Federation says, with apparel sales reaching close to $3 billion

"We think that has a lot to do with the fact that there is a lot of pent up demand from a very rough winter," says Grannis.

The bulk of shoppers will flock to discount stores to make their Easter purchases.

Chocolate maker Nestle says it produces more than 6 million pounds of its Nest Eggs and jelly beans during the season.

Peeps have been the number one selling non-chocolate item for more than two decades.

"Some like them a little firmer. Some like them fresh. Some put them in the microwave. Some bite the heads off. However they want to eat them or decorate with them is just great by us," said Ross Born, CEO of Peeps parent company.