Grocerants Have Room to Grow: SG Quick Poll

In a new survey fielded by SupermarketGuru.com, U.S. adults express their views on grocerants, their visit frequency and eating patterns out-of-home.

March 18, 2015

Americans enjoy the grocerants they know (sit-down eateries inside or adjacent to supermarkets), but the uncommon format has yet to mature.

This term - defined ten years ago by Christopher Muller, Ph.D., Professor of Practice at Boston University's School of Hospitality Administration - has been brought to life and refined by operators such as Wegmans, Hy-Vee, Lund & Byerly's and Mariano's. These chains are gaining image and share of the 40 percent of food dollars spent on out-of-home consumption in the U.S., according to data on food consumed away from home from the USDA Agricultural Research Service. 

In a new survey fielded by SupermarketGuru.com, U.S. adults express their views on grocerants, their visit frequency and eating patterns out-of-home.

Two-thirds of respondents (68 percent) say they're aware of a nearby grocerant. Yet just 10 percent call it a magnet that causes them to shop in that supermarket "always" or "often"; another 14 percent say it "sometimes" pulls them in while most (55 percent) say it doesn't at all.

The takeout market grocerants vie for is robust. Three out of ten respondents (29 percent) eat takeout six or more times a month, 20 percent do so three to five times per month, and 40 percent do so once or twice per month; 11 percent not at all. Dinner commands the most takeout interest (93 percent), lunch is second (42 percent), and breakfast and snacks tie for third (15 percent), in a question where respondents could cite multiple takeout occasions.

The most frequent resource for takeout is restaurants followed by the supermarket's prepared food section at the deli and finally the grocerant.

In the limited markets where grocerants are available, nearly 60 percent of respondents say they eat there because it’s convenient, 36 percent say they can food shop on the same trip, 32 percent say it tastes good, and 31 percent say it costs less than a restaurants. Other less common reasons are comfort, easy place to sit without feeling rushed, easy to park, and the family enjoys it.

Survey takers describe that overall "restaurants satisfy them the most, by a lot" (30 percent) or "satisfy them the most, by a little (17 percent).  Next is the prepared foods section "by a lot" (11 percent) or "by a little" (5 percent), followed by grocerants "by a lot" (4 percent) or "by a little" (2 percent).  Some 16 percent said "none" of these eateries satisfy them, while 14% say "there is not much difference - they're about the same." 

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