COVID-19 increased consumer spending on meat, eggs

American consumers paid more for groceries, primarily staples like meat, eggs and poultry, during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the results of a survey from C+R Research.

Doughman Headshot3 Headshot
Eldar Nurkovic | Bigstock.com
Eldar Nurkovic | Bigstock.com

American consumers paid more for groceries, primarily staples like meat, eggs and poultry, during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the results of a survey from C+R Research.

The survey asked 2,040 consumers how COVID-19 affected their budget, shopping habits and diets.

Groceries are more expensive

Consumers are still feeling the impacts of the pandemic on their daily life more than six months after the pandemic began. Grocery prices jumped sharply in March, the same time period where many consumers struggled to find the everyday household goods they needed on store shelves.

Eighty-five percent of consumers said that they were still paying more for groceries with an average weekly spend of $139. Items with the largest price jumps were meat, eggs, poultry and milk, the survey results showed.

“These grocery categories, which are center of plate staples, are the beneficiary of at home cooking and consumption.  Five years ago, foodservice sales surpassed retail food and beverage in the U.S.  With COVID-19, that trend has reversed due to the pandemic related shutdown of restaurant dining rooms and total closure of most other institutional away from home eating venues,” said Terrie Wendricks, VP of Consumer and Shopper Insights at C+R Research.

In addition, many consumers still worry about in store shortages. Most respondents (83%) still have difficulty finding the grocery items they would normally purchase, while 87% worry that a second COVID-19 wave will lead to further grocery shortages.

“Any consumer trend changes during a second wave of COVID-19 are going to be driven in large part by the economic situation of U.S. households moving forward,” Wendricks explained

How poultry companies can entice shoppers

To combat growing grocery bills, consumers are eating less meat and poultry, seeking discounts, avoiding organic items and buying more in bulk.

There are several things the industry can do to keep shoppers purchasing poultry products.

“With the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a shift from foodservice to cooking and eating at home. Finding more and better ways to merchandise the meal with poultry as the center of plate will make it easier for consumers to cook at home and help alleviate cooking fatigue. Renew efforts to create simple but exciting recipes that make it easier for people to cook and enjoy variety at home. Think about ways you can bring the out-of-home experience in-home,” Wendricks said.

View our continuing coverage of the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.

Like what you just read? Sign up now for free to receive the Poultry Future Newsletter.

Page 1 of 216
Next Page