Food Marketing Institute (FMI) has unveiled its inaugural report at FMI Connect, now taking place at Chicago's McCormick Place. "The Power of Produce 2015" investigates shifts in shoppers' produce-buying patterns and behaviors at retail, highlighting the full path to purchase, from mega-trends and pre-trip preparation through the actual purchase and consumption, followed by consumer suggestions on how to enhance the produce department.
Among the report's insights:
- Produce is a planned purchase, but a great opportunity for impulse exists: 57 percent of shoppers estimate that they frequently or almost always buy unplanned items when in-store.
- In-store execution is key: Price and promotions attract shoppers to the store, but when they arrive, they want clear signage, clearly marked prices, variety, freshness, good organization and product availability.
- Appearance trumps price when it comes purchasing: For both fruit and vegetables, the top purchase considerations are freshness/quality followed by price.
- Alternative channels are competitors for the fresh produce dollar: 50 percent of shoppers will occasionally buy produce at farmers' markets.
- Value-added produce grows ahead of its conventional counterpart: 13 percent over 2014 for value-added, versus 3 percent for unprepared produce.
- Megatrends influence the produce purchase: Six in 10 shoppers urge their stores to stock more organic and local items.
- Produce snacking and juicing show growth potential: 38 percent of households say they're eating more produce as snacks, while 27 percent say they're consuming more produce as juices/smoothies.