Meat and poultry products remain among the top choices for shoppers at retail, however consumers are changing their purchasing behavior, reported the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and North American Meat Institute (NAMI) in its tenth annual Power of Meat study.
Overall meat is still very much a planned purchase, but the decision is increasingly shifting to in-store, making excellence in execution even more important.
Price still remained the top priority among meat and poultry shoppers. Nevertheless, the high price of beef and pork prices had 40% of the shoppers shifting buying behavior in order to save money. Some consumers indicated buy less meat or shifting to different, species, cuts and brands.
According to the study, appearance of a product also highly influenced meat and poultry purchasing, surpassing total package prices for some shoppers.
The majority of the shoppers recognized the nutritional value of meat and poultry products offered. In addition, animal protein buyers are putting great emphasis on learner cuts and portion controls.
Furthermore, across the population, poultry was viewed as key to a balanced diet and red meat was seen as a source of valuable nutrients.
Although supermarkets remained the dominant outlet for fresh meat and poultry, farmers' markets are the greatest source of the occasional purchase, at 15% of shoppers.
Noteworthy, shoppers were influenced highly by mega trends, including sourcing, sustainability, health and wellness and organic.
A growing number of meat and poultry shoppers said they have purchased natural/organic products and most expect to maintain or increase their current purchase level. Better health and treatment of the animal was the leading reason for purchasing natural/organic meat and poultry products.