Berna Bulbul | Product Manager
The fresh foods category at grocery stores continues to feel the impact of the pandemic on sales and customer behaviors, as well as labor and supply challenges. And it is expected to continue in 2023, too. *
Retailers all over the World, are struggling with high inflation rates causing product price increases. Inflation is high, prices are increasing, so the customer demand!
The recently released, FMI—the Food Industry Association’s 2022 Power of Produce report revealed that shoppers rank price of fresh products as the number one factor when making purchasing decisions, followed by appearance (19%), health benefits (19%), and ripeness (15%).
The main reasons to effect price increases are;
- Energy, Packaging and Fertilizer etc. Costs
- Difficulty Finding Workers
- Shipping Costs
- Increasing Customer Selectivity
- Different delivery options that entered our lives with the pandemic
Actionable steps grocers can take to minimize the impact of the rising prices:
- Accurate identification of customer demand
- Determining the right inventory management policy
- Ensuring that fresh products spend minimum time during transportation (data-based solutions such as route optimization can be used).
- Cooperating with suppliers with timely and quantitative delivery discipline
- Optimizing product assortment and pricing
The more accurately the customer demand is determined, the lower the risk of destruction, especially in fresh products. In addition, the positive effect of increasing availability levels on customer demand should not be underestimated.
Price increase and customer demand are inversely proportional. In other words, customer demand is expected to decrease as the price increases or vice versa. While interpreting the customer demand in the data, the changing customer demand with the pandemic should be interpreted correctly. The price values do not actually decrease, but the customer will continue to buy as long as they need it. The main question that should be answered correctly is “In what levels will it occur?”