The Lempert Report Food News: Marketing, analysis, issues & trends and the impact on food and retail environments, specifically for the B2B food world with reporting and commentary on consumer and retailing trends by Phil Lempert. Phil can predict the future —and then help businesses and consumers understand it. For more than 25 years, Lempert, an expert analyst on consumer behavior, marketing trends, new products and the changing retail landscape, has identified and explained impending trends to consumers and some of the most prestigious companies worldwide. Known as The Supermarket Guru®, http://www.supermarketguru.com, Lempert is a distinguished author and speaker who alerts customers and business leaders to impending corporate and consumer trends, and empowers them to make educated purchasing and marketing decisions. To see more of The Lempert Report visit: http://www.thelempertreport.com
The Lempert Report for Thursday June 4, 2009 Time for retailers to step up Its time for food stores to step up and help struggling households in ways that go beyond promotional savings at the shelf. With the US unemployment rate at a 26-year high, many families that sustained supermarkets so well in good times now need help from the retailers selling them what they need to survive. Club memberships and sales are helpful but limited. Deals dont always conform with consumers needs in a particular week. Our economic challenges present an opportunity for retailers to differentiate themselves in a most meaningful way. Truffles seem to be the new it ingredient. They are being added to just about everything in white table cloth restaurants these days. The problem? Truffles can easily jack up the price of spaghetti to $100 a plate. Fungusamongus truffle mustard to the rescue. Made from 6% black truffles, it could well be one of the hottest new products on your shelves and one of best investments for your shoppers taste buds. Yes there is only just over 3 oz in this little jar, but one whiff of the aroma will convince you to add this SKU. The initial bite is almost all mustard, but a few seconds later the black truffle taste comes through loud and clear. Retails for $16.95. Retailers and World Ocean Day 2009 Jeremy Piven recently made headlines when he gave up his Broadway gig in Speed-the-Plow, and blamed mercury toxicity on eating large amounts of sushi. The idea of mercury poisoning from eating certain kinds of fish is not new. Through the years, stories about health risks for moms-to-be, nursing mothers and young children have dominated headlines. The trouble is, the headlines have rarely spurred the kind of regulatory reform, consumer guidance, or standardized industry practices that would protect the health of consumers, as well as the health of our domestic seafood industry. Seafood suppliers, food stores and regulators have much to address in a unified way. The Future of 100-Calorie Packs
Once the darlings of center-store, the 100-calorie packs for cookies, crackers and other snacks seem suddenly out of touch with todays economic realities. The sales will fall in 2009, three reasons will have pushed them over the edge: • First, a single pack lacked ample food to satisfy many, which drove consumers to eat two or three packs at a time. Chances are they also felt guilt due to their inability to be happy with just one—and who needed that. • Second, the recession gripped everyones budget, and led shoppers to calculate the high per-ounce premium they were paying for the convenience of grab-and-go packs. They decided theyd rather buy regular-size food packages instead, and spend the few extra minutes to make their own small packs using plastic sandwich bags.
• Third, people grew greener and began to look at these 100-calorie packs as examples of over-packaging thats not environmentally sound. Opting for other products instead is a simple choice that favors the Earth.
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