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Pasta, Rice and Grains - US - April 2015

“The pasta, rice, and grains categories face stagnant sales due to perceptions that, in general, they are high in gluten and carbohydrates and the mixes may be too processed. Brands must provide more healthful options to spur sales. Emerging grains can help breathe new life into this category, with additional focus on new flavors and health benefits.”

–    Amy Kraushaar, US Category Manager, Food and Drink and Foodservice

This report covers the following areas:

  • How can pasta/noodle and pasta meal brands turn around sales losses?
  • Can shorter cooking times encourage sales?
  • Will emerging pasta, grains, and noodles help grow sales?

Sales of pasta, rice, and grains were flat in 2014, but are forecast to grow by 2019. Slow growth stems from gluten/carbohydrate avoidance. Pasta and pasta-based meals will suffer most from category avoidance and should expand gluten-free alternatives to halt declines. Pasta mixes and rice mixes are hurt by consumer migration away from packaged, processed foods. Millennials, Hispanics, and households with children are most apt to buy. Interest in emerging pasta, rice, and grain varieties can boost sales if brands position themselves to take advantage of expanding consumer palates.

Pasta sales are negatively impacted by consumer avoidance of gluten and carbohydrates. Pasta brands can face these challenges by offering more gluten-free or nonwheat varieties. Pasta mixes also are negatively impacted by consumer migration away from gluten, and avoidance of processed foods like rice mixes Dry rice and grains sales benefit from consumer avoidance of pasta, as well as the health benefits rice and grains provide, such as protein and fiber. Emerging grain types such as quinoa and couscous also can capitalize on health benefits, as well as growing consumer interest in international cuisine. RTS rice sales are growing faster than rice mix sales, underscoring consumer demand for shorter cooking times and the shift away from processed, packaged foods. Consumers also increasingly expect packaged foods to provide added nutritional benefits such as added protein or vitamins. Adding a greater range of ethnic flavors can help spur interest and potentially grow category sales.
 

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Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
        • Data sources
          • Sales data
            • Consumer survey data
              • Abbreviations
              • Executive Summary

                • Overview
                  • Small growth forecast
                    • Figure 1: Total US sales and fan chart forecast of pasta, rice, and grains, at current prices, 2009-19
                  • Key players
                    • Figure 2: MULO sales of pasta, rice, and grains, by rolling 52 weeks 2014
                  • The consumer
                    • High household penetration
                      • Figure 3: Household purchases of pasta, rice, noodles, and grains – Any purchase, January 2015
                    • Expanding meal and snack-time opportunities could help grow sales
                      • Figure 4: Ways packaged pasta, rice, noodles, and grains are eaten, January 2015
                    • Versatility, short cooking time important to many buyers
                      • Figure 5: Packaged pasta, rice, noodles, and grains attributes buyers look for, January 2015
                    • What we think
                    • Issues and Insights

                        • How can pasta/noodle and pasta meal brands turn around sales losses?
                          • Insight: Offer more gluten-free options, focus on other healthful attributes
                            • Can shorter cooking times encourage sales?
                              • Insight: RTE products provide short preparation times
                                • Will emerging pasta, grains, and noodles help grow sales?
                                  • Insight: Expand range of products by incorporating emerging varieties
                                  • Market Size and Forecast

                                    • Key points
                                      • Sales and forecast of pasta, rice, and grains
                                        • Figure 6: Total US retail sales and forecast of pasta, rice, and grains, at current prices, 2009-19
                                        • Figure 7: Total US retail sales and forecast of pasta, rice, and grains, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2009-19
                                      • Fan chart forecast
                                        • Figure 8: Total US sales and fan chart forecast of pasta, rice, and grains, at current prices, 2009-19
                                      • Fan chart methodology
                                      • Market Drivers

                                        • Key points
                                          • Gluten-/carbohydrate-free diet trends lead to some category avoidance
                                            • Increasing durum wheat prices may impact pasta retail prices
                                              • Figure 9: Durum wheat: Planted acreage, harvested acreage, production, yield, and farm price
                                            • Demographics figure significantly in purchases
                                                • Figure 10: Population by generation, 2010-20
                                                • Figure 11: Population by race and Hispanic origin, 2010-20
                                                • Figure 12: Households, by presence of own children, 2003-13
                                            • Segment Performance

                                              • Key points
                                                • Pasta/noodles and pasta mixes suffer from shift away from gluten, carbs
                                                  • Sales of pasta and rice, by segment
                                                    • Figure 13: Total US retail sales of pasta and rice, by segment, at current prices, 2012 and 2014
                                                  • Sales and forecast of pasta and noodles
                                                    • Figure 14: Total US retail sales and forecast of pasta and noodles, at current prices, 2009-19
                                                  • Sales and forecast of pasta mixes
                                                    • Figure 15: Total US retail sales and forecast of pasta mixes, at current prices, 2009-19
                                                  • Sales and forecast of dry rice
                                                    • Figure 16: Total US retail sales and forecast of dry rice, at current prices, 2009-19
                                                  • Sales and forecast of rice mixes and RTS rice
                                                    • Figure 17: Total US retail sales and forecast of rice mixes and RTS rice, at current prices, 2009-19
                                                • Retail Channels

                                                  • Key points
                                                    • Supermarkets dominate
                                                      • Sales of pasta, rice, and grains, by channel
                                                        • Figure 18: Total US retail sales of pasta, rice, and grains, by channel, 2012 and 2014
                                                      • Competition from mass merchandisers cuts into sales growth
                                                        • Figure 19: US supermarket sales of pasta, rice, and grains, 2009-14
                                                      • Mass merchandisers likely responsible for other channel growth
                                                        • Figure 20: US other channel sales of pasta, rice, and grains, 2009-14
                                                      • Natural channel sales of packaged grains grow nearly 42%
                                                        • Figure 21: Natural supermarket sales of packaged grains, by type, at current prices, by rolling 52 weeks 2013 and 2014
                                                        • Figure 22: Natural supermarket sales of packaged grains/rice and dry grain/rice dishes, by organic ingredients, at current prices, rolling 52 weeks 2012 and 2014
                                                    • Leading Companies

                                                      • Key points
                                                        • Leading companies decline or experience flat sales
                                                          • Market crowded with smaller players
                                                            • Private label makes up highest individual share
                                                              • MULO sales of pasta, rice, and grains
                                                                • Figure 23: MULO sales of pasta, rice, and grains, by rolling 52 weeks 2013 and 2014
                                                              • MULO sales of pasta/noodles
                                                                • Figure 24: Barilla YouTube channel video, 2015
                                                                • Figure 25: MULO sales of pasta/noodles, 2013 and 2014
                                                                • Figure 26: MULO sales of pasta/noodles, 2013 and 2014 (continued)
                                                              • MULO sales of pasta mixes
                                                                • Figure 27: Kraft Macaroni & Cheese TV ad, 2015
                                                                • Figure 28: MULO sales of pasta mixes, 2013 and 2014
                                                              • MULO sales of dry rice
                                                                • Figure 29: MULO sales of dry rice, 2013 and 2014
                                                              • MULO sales of dry rice mixes
                                                                • Figure 30: Knorr Rice Sides TV ad, 2015
                                                                • Figure 31: MULO sales of dry rice mixes, 2013 and 2014
                                                            • Innovations and Innovators

                                                              • Low/no/reduced and vitamin/mineral fortified claims increase in 2014
                                                                • Figure 32: Top 10 pasta and noodles product claims, by percentage of total claims, 2010-14
                                                              • Additive/preservative-free and organic claims rise in 2014
                                                                • Figure 33: Top 10 rice (including instant) and rice mix product claims, by percentage of total claims, 2010-14
                                                              • Preference for gluten-free may grow
                                                                • Organic claims can attract shoppers looking for healthful foods
                                                                • The Consumer – Rice and Rice Mixes Purchases

                                                                  • Key points
                                                                    • High household penetration for any rice/rice mixes
                                                                        • Figure 34: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes, January 2015
                                                                        • Figure 35: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes, by generations, January 2015
                                                                        • Figure 36: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes, by race/Hispanic origin, January 2015
                                                                        • Figure 37: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes, by presence of children in household, January 2015
                                                                      • Buyers likely to look for single-serve/on-the-go packaging, ethnic flavoring
                                                                          • Figure 38: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015
                                                                          • Figure 39: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                        • Gluten-free, organic, added benefits are important
                                                                            • Figure 40: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes – Any purchase, by product nutritional attributes important to buyers, January 2015
                                                                            • Figure 41: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes – Any purchase, by product nutritional attributes important to buyers, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                          • New flavors can help drive sales
                                                                            • Figure 42: Household purchases of rice and rice mixes – Any purchase, by important purchase factors, January 2015
                                                                        • The Consumer – Pasta and Noodles Purchases

                                                                          • Key points
                                                                            • Pasta/noodles household penetration somewhat higher than rice/rice mixes
                                                                                • Figure 43: Household purchases of pasta and noodles, January 2015
                                                                                • Figure 44: Household purchases of pasta and noodles, by generations, January 2015
                                                                                • Figure 45: Household purchases of pasta and noodles, by race/Hispanic origin, January 2015
                                                                                • Figure 46: Household purchases of pasta and noodles, by presence of children in household, January 2015
                                                                              • Those looking for single-serve, on-the-go packaging very likely to buy pasta/noodles
                                                                                • Figure 47: Household purchases of pasta and noodles – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015
                                                                                • Figure 48: Household purchases of pasta and noodles – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                              • Gluten-free, added nutritional benefits are important
                                                                                • Figure 49: Household purchases of pasta and noodles – Any purchase, by product nutritional attributes important to buyers, January 2015
                                                                                • Figure 50: Household purchases of pasta and noodles – Any purchase, by product nutritional attributes important to buyers, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                              • Buyers say new flavors, packaging type are important
                                                                                • Figure 51: Household purchases of pasta and noodles – Any purchase, by important purchase factors, January 2015
                                                                            • The Consumer – Dry Macaroni and Cheese and Pasta-Based Meals or Side Dish Purchases

                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                • Two thirds buy mac and cheese; less than half buy pasta meal/side dishes
                                                                                    • Figure 52: Household purchases of dry macaroni and cheese and pasta-based meals/side dishes, January 2015
                                                                                    • Figure 53: Household purchases of dry macaroni and cheese and pasta-based meals/side dishes, by generations, January 2015
                                                                                    • Figure 54: Household purchases of dry macaroni and cheese and pasta-based meals/side dishes, by presence of children in household, January 2015
                                                                                  • Buyers look for kid-friendly, RTE
                                                                                    • Figure 55: Household purchases of dry macaroni and cheese and pasta-based meals/side dishes – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015
                                                                                    • Figure 56: Household purchases of dry macaroni and cheese and pasta-based meals/side dishes – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                    • Figure 57: Household purchases of dry macaroni and cheese and pasta-based meals/side dishes – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                  • Store brands, product color, new flavors can sway buyers
                                                                                    • Figure 58: Household purchases of dry macaroni and cheese and pasta-based meals/side dishes – Any purchase, by important purchase factors, January 2015
                                                                                    • Figure 59: Household purchases of dry macaroni and cheese and pasta-based meals/side dishes – Any purchase, by important purchase factors, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                • The Consumer – Grains Purchases

                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                    • A third buy grains
                                                                                        • Figure 60: Household purchases of grains, January 2015
                                                                                        • Figure 61: Household purchases of grains, by generations, January 2015
                                                                                        • Figure 62: Household purchases of grains, by presence of children in the household, January 2015
                                                                                      • Packaging, ethnic flavors may drive grains sales
                                                                                        • Figure 63: Household purchases of grains – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015
                                                                                        • Figure 64: Household purchases of grains – Any purchase, by product attributes buyers look for, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                      • Alternative, organic attributes may encourage purchases
                                                                                        • Figure 65: Household purchases of grains – Any purchase, by nutritional attributes important to buyers, January 2015
                                                                                        • Figure 66: Household purchases of grains – Any purchase, by nutritional attributes important to buyers, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                      • New flavors likely to aid purchase decisions
                                                                                        • Figure 67: Household purchases of grains – Any purchase, by important purchase factors, January 2015
                                                                                    • The Consumer – Ways Consumed

                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                        • Pasta most apt to be eaten as a main dish, rice/grains as a side dish
                                                                                            • Figure 68: Ways packaged pasta, rice, noodles, and grains are eaten, January 2015
                                                                                        • The Consumer – Product Attributes Buyers Look For

                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                            • High likelihood to look for versatility, short cooking time
                                                                                                • Figure 69: Packaged pasta, rice, noodles, and grains attributes buyers look for, January 2015
                                                                                                • Figure 70: Packaged pasta, rice, noodles, and grains attributes buyers look for, by presence of children in household, January 2015
                                                                                            • The Consumer – Important Nutritional Attributes

                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                • Whole grain, high fiber, no artificial ingredients important to many
                                                                                                    • Figure 71: Packaged pasta, rice, noodles, and grains nutritional attributes important to buyers, January 2015
                                                                                                • The Consumer – Important Purchase Factors

                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                    • Importance of low price points up need for value
                                                                                                        • Figure 72: Important purchase factors for packaged pasta, rice, noodles, and grains, January 2015
                                                                                                    • The Consumer – Interest in Emerging Types of Pasta, Rice, Noodles, and Grains

                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                        • High level of interest in emerging products
                                                                                                            • Figure 73: Interest in emerging types of pasta, rice, noodles, and grains – Have tried/interested in trying, January 2015
                                                                                                            • Figure 74: Interest in emerging types of pasta, rice, noodles, and grains – Any purchase, January 2015
                                                                                                            • Figure 75: Interest in emerging types of pasta, rice, noodles, and grains – Any purchase, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 76: Interest in emerging types of pasta, rice, noodles, and grains – Any purchase, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 77: Interest in emerging types of pasta, rice, noodles, and grains – Any purchase, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 78: Interest in emerging types of pasta, rice, noodles, and grains – Any purchase, January 2015 (continued)
                                                                                                        • Appendix – Other Useful Consumer Tables

                                                                                                          • EMS analysis
                                                                                                            • Figure 79: Household consumption of rice/rice dishes, by demographics, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 80: Types of rice/rice dishes eaten in household, by race/Hispanic origin, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 81: Kinds of rice/rice dishes eaten in household, by demographics, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 82: Brands of rice/rice dishes eaten in household, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 83: Brands of rice/rice dishes eaten in household, August 2013-September 2014 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 84: Brands of rice/rice dishes eaten in household, August 2013-September 2014 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 85: Brands of rice/rice dishes eaten in household, August 2013-September 2014 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 86: Brands of rice/rice dishes eaten in household, August 2013-September 2014 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 87: Number of servings of rice/rice dishes eaten in household in last seven days, by demographics, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 88: Household usage of packaged pasta, by demographics, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 89: Kinds of packaged pasta used in household, by demographics, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 90: Brands of packaged pasta used in household, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 91: Brands of packaged pasta used in household, August 2013-September 2014 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 92: Brands of packaged pasta used in household, August 2013-September 2014 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 93: Brands of packaged pasta used in household, August 2013-September 2014 (continued)
                                                                                                            • Figure 94: Number of packages of pasta used in household in last 30 days, August 2013-September 2014
                                                                                                        • Appendix – Trade Associations

                                                                                                            • American Institute of Food Distribution
                                                                                                              • Food Marketing Institute (FMI)
                                                                                                                • Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA)
                                                                                                                  • National Pasta Association (NPA)
                                                                                                                    • Organic Trade Association (OTA)
                                                                                                                      • Private Label Manufacturers Association (PLMA)
                                                                                                                        • USA Rice Federation

                                                                                                                        Companies Covered

                                                                                                                        • Walmart Stores (USA)

                                                                                                                        Pasta, Rice and Grains - US - April 2015

                                                                                                                        £3,199.84 (Excl.Tax)