Shifts in Food Trends – Consumer Response to Global Pandemic

Americans are urged to stay at home as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across the US. As consumers navigate the new norms of social distancing, this lifestyle disruption has greatly impacted their shopping behaviors. Purchase focuses vary as people search out both short and long-term relief.

Packaged Food Surges

Stockpiling pantry staples has taken over perimeter shopping as people seek items with longer shelf lives like pasta, beans, and canned soup. Kraft Heinz and Campbell Soup Company have dramatically increased production to keep up with high demand. For the week ending March 21, Campbell reported their case orders rose by 366% compared to the same time last year.

Baking Keeps Life Sweet

While many consumers are buying essential items, others are finding ways to satisfy their sweet tooth. According to Nielsen data, sales of yeast grew by 647% compared to 2019 and cookie purchases increased by 50%. #Quarantinecookies and #coronacakes are trending creations on Instagram as many people find comfort in anxiety baking during such uncertain times.

Food Delivery Thriving

As restaurants close their doors, Americans are relying on mobile food ordering and contactless delivery to attain their goods. Research from Apptopia showed a rapid surge in downloads for major grocery delivery apps with Instacart and Walmart increasing their daily downloads by 218% and 160% respectively compared to last month. DoorDash added 100,000 restaurants to their subscription program and many services have a no-charge delivery fee.

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Market Data / Sources