Grocery Store Perimeter - Canada - March 2016
"Rapidly rising food costs are impacting categories sold at the perimeter of the grocery store (fresh produce, dairy, fresh baked goods, fresh meat and seafood). Retailers must creatively find ways to reinforce ‘freshness’ and lessen consumer focus on price. Motivating consumers at specialty counters will mean reminding them of the capability to customize purchases and leveraging staff expertise. Ready, prepared food offerings also represent an area with good potential to deepen engagement with shoppers as perceptions of HMR (Home Meal Replacement) products are positive. Currently, however, this area may not be meeting its full potential."
- Carol Wong-Li, Senior Analyst, Lifestyles and Leisure
This report discusses the following key topics:
- Grocery shoppers are feeling the pinch of current economics
- Specialty counters are ‘fresher’ to only 43% of grocery shoppers
- Low use of ready, prepared offerings or HMR
Grocery costs are rising, being driven by the rise in cost of fresh fruit and vegetables. The weak Canadian dollar is contributing to these costs as nearly all fruit and vegetables consumed in Canada are imported. Alongside record-high levels of household debt, Canadians are feeling the pinch of higher grocery bills. As such, grocery retailers will need to creatively find ways to grow appeal of their perimeter products while detracting the consumer’s focus away from the price. Enhancing the shopping experience by blurring the line between retail and leisure may be an effective way to encourage engagement. The key will be to promote alternatives to price promotions given that rising import costs leave little room for retailers in an already heavily discounted environment.
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