All foodies and food professionals today remember the what Alice May Brock said: “Tomatoes and oregano make it Italian; wine and tarragon make it French, sour cream makes it Russian, lemon and cinnamon make it Greek, soy sauce makes it Chinese, garlic makes it good.”
Today convenient meal participation, differentiation and individualization; are each a hallmark of the grocerant niche Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat fresh prepared food sales phenomenon. That is once again the recipe for retail food sales success in 2022.
Bundled meal components allow customers to select from Italian, American, French, Russian or Greek and utilize the components at home any way they like. The new American meal can be a composite of any prepared food components that the individual may want and they can mix and pair them any way as well.
Continuing a long-standing tradition in the United States is a melting pot of people from all over the world, with different cultures, traditions and flavor preferences. The new American meal is a melting pot of flavor and choice. Meal components that can be mix and matched for home consumption are integral to retail success.
Consumers have been exposed to a plethora of flavors and have not the time to master the skill of cooking each. The rapidly growing grocerant trend is empowering the consumer to establish new customs and traditions in eating better, more flavorful food. The Grocerant niche is about convenient meal participation, differentiation and individualization. Let’s look at some recent facts on why:
1. The U.S. Census projects that consumers in their prime spending years (18 to 64) are going to shrink as a proportion of the population from 52.4% in 2016 to 49.5% by the end of this decade. This seems like a small difference. But as Baby Boomers continue to age, they are driving the proportion of the population ages 65+ from 17.2% to 23.2% over the same period and they spend less eating out.
2. In fact; 83.6% of all restaurant meals in 2022 are purchased from a fast food outlet or drive-thru.
3. So, how do Americans decide what to have for dinner when they want to go out to eat? The most common ways that people find somewhere to eat are on Google (76%), through word-of-mouth recommendations (64%), on Yelp (39%), and on social media (30%).
4. When asked where Americans get dinner, most (77%) commonly eat at home or cook for themselves. 50% say they regularly get takeout or pick up, 31% say they go to restaurants, and 3% say they use a meal subscription box.
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