Meat and poultry growth slows as consumers ‘Eat Out to Help Out’

Meat and poultry growth slows as consumers ‘Eat Out to Help Out’

Growth in sales of fresh meat and poultry slowed in the four weeks to the 6th September as Brits took advantage of the ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ scheme, according to the latest market insight from Kantar.

Both fresh primary (6.0%) and fresh processed meat and poultry (6.4%) recorded single digit growth rates for the first time since February while chilled fish saw stronger sales over the most recent four weeks, growing 7.7%, up from 6.9% in the previous four weeks.

Marcelina Fedczyszyn, consumer insight director at Kantar, said: “Eating for health reasons at home came more to the fore in the lead up to ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ with consumers looking to get their ‘5-a-day’ playing a key role in the resurgence.

“This will be vital to track as we head into the darker, cooler months when consumer choices are traditionally driven less by health and when there’s no longer an incentive to eat out.”

A total of 53.7 million more visits to out-of-home venues were made by Brits in the five weeks to the 6th September compared with the previous five weeks, as consumers chose to treat themselves, spending more than usual.

Lucy Chapman, strategic insight director at Kantar, commented: “Consumers took the opportunity to indulge when dining out. Spend per trip increased for main meals despite the discount which came with Eat Out to Help Out.”

Despite the surge in eating out, the lockdown growth for fresh sausages (12.1%) and bacon (10.3%) continued throughout August. Fresh red meat roasts continued on a solid run too, registering 11.3% sales growth in the latest four weeks, led by beef roasts attracting 220,000 more shoppers. Fresh lamb (10.5%) continued its recovery since the Easter slump, attracting more shoppers for mince, chops and steaks.

Andy Crossan, strategic insight director at Kantar, concluded: “Smaller, more intimate Christmas eating occasions await us this year as it stands, so planning purchases is likely to be key for many – especially older – shoppers.

“This could present more opportunities for frozen meats to play a role in saving shoppers from having to go in-store late in the Christmas season. More manageable, smaller cuts which proved popular for Christmas 2019 are likely to gain traction too.”

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