Podcast by Supermarket News
Podcast by Supermarket News
Podcast: NFRA’s Jeff Rumachik sees more growth for frozen, dairy and deli
The frozen food and dairy sections drive more sales and store traffic than you think. Just ask Jeff Rumachik, executive vice president and chief operating officer of the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association (NFRA).
Harrisburg, Pa.-based NFRA recently released its annual State of the Industry Report, which takes a deep dive into frozen and refrigerated food shopping and retail trends. Combined, frozen and dairy accounted for $125 billion in sales for 2019. On average, shoppers last year made 70 store trips to buy frozen and dairy items, and they spent $13.44 per trip.
Frozen continues to experience a rebirth, generating two years of back-to-back growth with sales of $54.6 billion, a gain of $918 million. The department accounts for 31 trips per buying household annually and adds $10.90 to the shopping basket per trip. More growth is expected for the category, according to NFRA, which noted that half of U.S. households have access to more than one freezer, giving them extra capacity to stock up.
Dairy, the second-largest edible department in the supermarket (excluding alcoholic beverages), tallied 2019 sales of $71 billion, delivering $550 million in year-over-year growth. NFRA said the dairy section drives 47 trips per buying household per year, with milk and cheese at the top of shoppers’ lists.
NFRA represents all segments of the frozen and refrigerated foods industry, including manufacturers, retailers/wholesalers, distributors, sales agents, logistics providers and other suppliers.
Rumachik has been with NFRA for 11 years. In his current role, he oversees marketing and promotional activities, including the NFRA Convention. His 40-year career in the food industry includes experience at all levels of store management in midsize and high-volume food stores, as well as in supervisory and advisory roles at wholesalers, independent supermarkets and chain stores. Prior to joining NFRA, he spent 18 years at the Food Marketing Institute, most recently as vice president of the wholesaler division.
In this podcast with Supermarket News, Rumachik sheds more light on the latest trends in the frozen, dairy and packaged deli categories. He also addresses how the frozen and refrigerated foods sector is being impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Podcast: Nielsen’s Rick Maturo says U.S. CBD market could top $2.5 billion
Supermarkets are paying increasing attention to the market for cannabidiol (CBD) products as consumer demand for these items continues to climb. Given the market potential for CBD products, that attention is well-warranted for grocery and other retailers, according to Rick Maturo, associate director of client services for the cannabis practice at Nielsen.
For 2020, Nielsen projects that the hemp-derived CBD market could reach the $2.5 billion mark — or more — in the United States. The consumer market researcher notes that its estimate is conservative, taking into account possible regulatory speed bumps in the CBD marketplace.
IGA’s president John Ross is bullish on the future of independent retail
Since taking over as president of the Independent Grocers Alliance (IGA) two years ago, John Ross has sounded the clarion call that retail competition is everywhere — chain growth, new channels, foodservice options, digital and online and more.
IGA’s mission for nearly 100 years has been to offer independent member grocery stores the ability to better compete in the marketplace while at the same time allowing them to stay true to who they are: Hometown store owners meeting the needs of their local communities with more than 1,100 U.S. stores and 6,000 worldwide.
“Every year it gets tougher to win in the marketplace,” Ross told SN in our most recent Off the Shelf podcast. “And of course in an environment where the shoppers are more discerning, they want more from us and they want to pay less. So our job is to make sure that we’ve got the right tools in place to help us win.”
To that end, Ross says, IGA is constantly having to update its toolbox.
“We’ve got to make sure they’ve got digital tools,” he said. “This is everything from online incentives, the ability to do bounceback offers, to keep the shopper in the store, access to digital manufacturer offers…all the things that other chains have. For independent stores, whether you've got one location or a hundred, it may often feel like you're competing against these big huge mega chains and they've gotten more deals and more aggressive deals than you can get. It’s our responsibility to make sure we're working with the manufacturers of the national and the shopper marketing level and deploying offers nationally that allow those independents to compete. And if we do all of those things and a lot more things as well, yeah, we'll fulfill our mission.”
When asked where he sees the future of the independent grocer headed, Ross was overwhelmingly positive. “Shoppers want a partner who's helping them be smarter about the choices they make on food for their family,” he said. “As the sales in our stores shift from commodities that are store products to customized hyperlocal assortments in deli and produce and meat and all the other areas, as that shift continues, the strong independent becomes stronger and it's showing up in our numbers right now. I’m bullish.”
Thrive Market’s Jeremiah McElwee reflects on the retailer’s rapid rise
In just over five years, online natural retailer has half a million members and offers 6,500 different products. Listen to the interview.
Podcast: Dunnhumby’s Jose Gomes sees regional supermarkets upping their game
Traditional supermarkets are experiencing a resurgence as a preferred destination for grocery shoppers, Jose Gomes, North America president for dunnhumby, said in an SN Off the Shelf podcast.
Dunnhumby recently released its third annual U.S. Grocery Retailer Preference Index (RPI). The study by the global customer data science firm, whose U.S. office is in Chicago, examined the 60 largest retailers in the $700 billion U.S. grocery market to identify which ones have the strongest combination of consumer emotional sentiment and financial performance.
This year, H-E-B came in at No. 1, toppling Trader Joe’s, which dipped to No. 2 after finishing first the previous two years. Market Basket cracked the top five, coming in at No. 4 and pushing last year’s second-place finisher Costco Wholesale to No. 6. Amazon (No. 3) and Wegmans Foods Markets (No. 5) held onto their spots from a year ago.
Rounding out the grocery retailers in the top quartile of the 2020 RPI were Aldi (No. 7), Sam’s Club (No. 8), Walmart (No. 9), Publix Super Markets (No. 10), WinCo Foods (No. 11), Fresh Thyme Farmers Market (No. 12), Sprouts Farmers Markets (No. 13) and ShopRite (No. 14). Lowes Foods saw the biggest year-over-year gain, climbing to No. 26 from No. 31.
Dunnhumby’s research focuses on seven “pillars” shaping the consumer emotional connection to a grocery retailer and its financial performance: price, quality, digital, operations, convenience, discounts/rewards and speed. The RPI stands out from other retailer rankings because it rates companies on a composite of financial success, emotional bond and performance on customer preferences.
Wakefern’s Chris Skyers says private label transformation under way
Welcome to SN Off the Shelf, a podcast series from Supermarket News.
In this twice-monthly feature, SN editors talk with industry executives, experts and other grocery players about the news, trends and issues that matter most to retailers and their business partners.
This week, we're speaking with Chris Skyers of Wakefern about private label brands at ShopRite.