I recently read a top-line consumer report from one of the biggest consumer research think-tanks in nation that stated customers are racing to prepared food and meals from supermarket retailers…and why restaurants should be concerned.
A snap shot of the data reports that of those consumers that were interviewed, over half were more likely to eat a dinner at home, with food purchased from the grocery store. The data also indicates that 64% reported buying ready-to-heat, ready-to-eat, or ready-to-prepare meals within the last 30 days. Most of the comments and reasons for the purchase intent were value and one-stop shopping convenience.
The retail food industry seems on track for a 7% top line sales growth increase in the next year which is almost unheard of in the industry. Much of the growth is coming from customers who seek a low cost alternative to restaurant meals or those who see the time value in buying prepared foods at the store instead of dealing with the dining hassle of a restaurant. Price, Time, and value all seem to be the drivers of this trend.