instore - October 2016 - 11


cover story

instore's first exclusive market research study reveals what retail foodservice
shoppers are thinking once they step inside your store, and how to turn that
to your businesses' advantage.
by Stephanie DeCamp and Ryan Atkinson

F

or decades, we've looked
at retail foodservice
consumers and their
purchasing decisions under the
scope of two major points - price
and convenience.
If it's not a tremendous value
and it's not ready to eat, or at least
tantalizingly close to consumption-ready, consumers are likely
to pass by a foodservice option
in their local supermarket or
c-store. At least, that's how the
thinking went.
But according to new research
from instore magazine and
Cypress Research Associates,
consumers say that freshness is
the No. 1 purchasing driver over
all other attributes.
The study revealed that 96
percent of consumers say that
they have purchased fresh
prepared foods to go from a
supermarket deli, bakery or
c-store. While price and convenience are very much still an
integral part of consumers'
purchasing decisions, 91 percent
of the study's respondents said
the freshness of the food was
either important or extremely
important, the highest of all
categories.
It's a trend that Scott Fox, vicepresident of bakery operations
for Dorothy Lane market, says is
already in play in the industry.

"Price is not the impression we
put the most focus on," he says.
"Instead, it's the freshness and
quality of the product, along
with service."
Diane Earl, senior director
of prepared for United
Supermarkets, says she agrees.
United's 37 locations across Texas
- along with its Market Street,
Amigos, Albertsons Market and
United Express locations - have
put even more emphasis on
freshness lately, and the initiative
includes more than just taste.
"Freshness is, first and foremost,
on everybody's mind now," Earl
says. "It has to look great in order
to sell. If it doesn't look like it was
just prepared, they're not going to
pick it up."
United, in fact, has a designated
chef who - along with the company's R&D department - works on
the appearance of food in order to
enhance its fresh appeal. "That's
all he does," Earl says. "He works
on recipes and does extensive
research on how long the product
looks great under heat. That's
how important freshness, and the
perception of freshness, really is.
People shop with their eyes."
Underscoring this, the study
revealed that the top reason those
who say that they haven't bought
prepared foods from a c-store in
the last year is that it isn't fresh

enough. So what can c-stores do
to change that?
The National Association of
Convenience Stores has actually long been on the case,
encouraging more c-stores to
incorporate fresh foods into their
offerings to dispel the notion
and exploit this room for growth
based on consumer demand. The

"Freshness is, first and foremost, on
everybody's mind now. It has to look
great in order to sell."
Diane Earl, United Supermarkets

association also has its reFresh
Initiative, launched two years
ago, that focuses especially on
food offerings in c-stores and
works to show their proprietors
how they can take advantage of
the trend for a bigger bottom line,
and contribute to spreading the
word that c-stores' food offerings
can be just as fresh as those sold
in other channels.
"Last year we published findings from the Hudson Institute
that showed that one of the
three big opportunities that
c-stores have is to tell people
that we have fresh food," says
Jeff Lenard, vice-president of
strategic industry initiatives

for the National Association of
Convenience Stores. "Too many
don't go beyond the gas island to
see how stores have evolved to
have much more fresh offerings.
We also heard a similar message
from Frank Beard, who recently
tried an experiment and ate
nothing but gas station food for
30 days. He says that based on
his experiences, we can tell the
consumer a better story - about
how we can take the store to
them, as opposed to expecting
the consumer to come to the
store. And, by the way, Frank lost
six pounds during his experiment - while finding and eating
healthy food, all from convenience stores."

instore * OCTOBER 2016 * 11



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of instore - October 2016

instore - October 2016
Editor's Note - Knowing the consumer
Table of Contents
News - On our radar
Cover Story - What's Driving Retail Foodservice Consumers?
Commissary Insider - October 2016
Insight Insider - Bantam Bagels
Food Safety - Controlling salmonella
Equipment - IBIE machinery debuts
Packaging - Portion control
Operations & Logistics - Inventory software
By the numbers - Value-added fruit
Need to know - Sushi saturation?
Feature - Dietitians: the new necessity
Feature - Peanut Butter Black Bean Brownies
Consider - Holiday cheese trays
On display - New Year's Eve
First to Market
Ad Index
instore - October 2016 - instore - October 2016
instore - October 2016 - 2
instore - October 2016 - Editor's Note - Knowing the consumer
instore - October 2016 - 4
instore - October 2016 - 5
instore - October 2016 - Table of Contents
instore - October 2016 - 7
instore - October 2016 - News - On our radar
instore - October 2016 - 9
instore - October 2016 - Cover Story - What's Driving Retail Foodservice Consumers?
instore - October 2016 - 11
instore - October 2016 - 12
instore - October 2016 - 13
instore - October 2016 - 14
instore - October 2016 - 15
instore - October 2016 - 16
instore - October 2016 - 17
instore - October 2016 - 18
instore - October 2016 - 19
instore - October 2016 - 20
instore - October 2016 - 21
instore - October 2016 - 22
instore - October 2016 - 23
instore - October 2016 - 24
instore - October 2016 - 25
instore - October 2016 - 26
instore - October 2016 - Insight Insider - Bantam Bagels
instore - October 2016 - CI2
instore - October 2016 - CI3
instore - October 2016 - CI4
instore - October 2016 - CI5
instore - October 2016 - Food Safety - Controlling salmonella
instore - October 2016 - CI7
instore - October 2016 - Equipment - IBIE machinery debuts
instore - October 2016 - CI9
instore - October 2016 - Packaging - Portion control
instore - October 2016 - CI11
instore - October 2016 - Operations & Logistics - Inventory software
instore - October 2016 - CI13
instore - October 2016 - CI14
instore - October 2016 - CI15
instore - October 2016 - CI16
instore - October 2016 - 27
instore - October 2016 - 28
instore - October 2016 - 29
instore - October 2016 - By the numbers - Value-added fruit
instore - October 2016 - 31
instore - October 2016 - Need to know - Sushi saturation?
instore - October 2016 - 33
instore - October 2016 - Feature - Dietitians: the new necessity
instore - October 2016 - 35
instore - October 2016 - 36
instore - October 2016 - 37
instore - October 2016 - 38
instore - October 2016 - 39
instore - October 2016 - 40
instore - October 2016 - 41
instore - October 2016 - Feature - Peanut Butter Black Bean Brownies
instore - October 2016 - 43
instore - October 2016 - Consider - Holiday cheese trays
instore - October 2016 - 45
instore - October 2016 - On display - New Year's Eve
instore - October 2016 - 47
instore - October 2016 - First to Market
instore - October 2016 - Ad Index
instore - October 2016 - 50
instore - October 2016 - 51
instore - October 2016 - 52
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