In two pandemics – Covid-19 and the "global pork pandemic" – the small goods category performed remarkably well.
Smallgoods was one of the top five growth categories in supermarkets since the last MAT, according to Don.
Pre-Pack is driving category growth, rising $ 249.1 million last year, representing 84% of the increase in value. The move from delis to pre-packaged small items was driven by key factors such as convenience, portion size, freshness and the ability to navigate and select items via branding. Product information has also contributed to a significant change in the overall category.
According to Greg Wooller, director of food sales at Don, the biggest trends impacting the overall performance of the category over the past 12 months have been price inflation due to the global swine pandemic due to African swine flu (ASF) and people's behavior change due to Covid-19 .
"As Covid-19 forces a change in people who spend more time at home (i.e., work from home, teach children from home), there has been a tremendous increase in home occasions focused primarily on breakfast (bacon ), Lunch (ham, salami – fillers), and meals / entertainment (platters, cubes of bacon, kabana), ”he says.
"Smallgoods was arguably perfectly positioned for Covid-19 and moving to more home opportunities, while the number of off-home opportunities (i.e. food service) declined."
However, this increase in demand was felt in the supply chain, which was already under pressure. ASF continued to disrupt global pork production and consumption, resulting in significant meat inflation in the market.
"The volatility and speed of these changing circumstances in different states had a huge impact on the manufacture of small goods during the year," says Wooller.
Manufacturers and retailers continue to adapt to changing consumer needs. According to Wooller, there has been over-reliance on value in recent years to propel the category forward. Hence, the role of innovation and premiumization became important to achieve growth. Over the past 12 months, however, the product mix, pack size and the faster growth of retailers' own brands have changed, making it harder to trade and premiumize in the short term.
"In order to drive the growth of the categories forward in the long term, we have to activate more opportunities and address customers with clearly differentiated offers," says Wooller.
Read the delicatessen and small goods feature in the May issue of Retail World.
A piece of the action first appeared in Retail World Magazine.