When the kids say I’m hungry, What’s for Dinner? There is a very slim chance that dinner is going to be cooked from scratch. Foodservice Solutions® Grocerant Guru™ has documented the explosive growth of the Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat fresh prepared food Grocerant niche since 1991.
Today consumers are increasingly adopting grocerant niche mix and match meal components assembly into a customized family meal. The undercurrents of an evolving retail food marketplace may be leaving legacy grocery chains in the lurch.
New Non-traditional fresh prepared food channels have garnered customer adoption so succesfuly that many people simply do not go to the grocery store any longer. Chain drug stores, convenience stores, liquor stores, and now dollar stores are selling fresh prepared Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat food.
In fact in a new report from the International Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association found:
1. Non-traditional channels such as drug stores are meeting shoppers' needs through fresh offerings and grab-and-go lunchtime strategies,
2. Convenience stores are providing customers with more variety and healthy items,
3. Small-box formats, while at a disadvantage because of limited product selection, have the advantage of proximity over big-box operators.
4. Traditional food retail channels will experience a decrease market share of 1.2 percentage points by 2018 (44.8%), while non-traditional grocery and convenience store channels will command 40.1% and 15.1% of the market,
5. Non-supermarket channels fueled almost all growth in food retailing over the past 17 years, with supercenter sales almost twice those of supermarkets per square foot,
Fresh prepared Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat food offerings are expanding points of distribution, evolving with customer relevance, enhancing the family meal all while changing the retail food landscape. Success does leave clues. Clue number one is follow the customer. Are you still doing what you have always done? So, are grocery stores needed? Maybe not.