Restaurants will continue to face several challenges in the evolving post-pandemic landscape, and one of those is consumers exploring more ways to feed themselves at home.
Market research firm Mintel’s report on Home Meal Replacement & Grocerants in Canada found that the prominence and importance of home meal replacements and grocerant concepts have grown in recent years, reports Canadian Grocer.
That has come in tandem with significant interest from Canadian consumers. Mintel’s report found that three in five Canadians say they buy prepared/made-to-order foods from home meal replacements services. Half of these consumers do so at least weekly.
It’s not just home cooking that consumers are looking to substitute for home meal replacement services. They’re also fast becoming a go-to replacement for restaurants.
Of the consumers who use home meal replacements, seven out of 10 agree that when deciding on which form of takeout to buy, they are as likely to consider ready-made meals from grocery stores as they are fast-food takeout meals.
A lot of the attraction seems to come down to convenience. When asked what they saw as the main advantages of home meal replacements compared to fast-food restaurants, the most commonly cited reason was the presence of options available on-site while grocery shopping.
Consumers also think home meal replacements offer better value for money than fast food, according to Mintel’s research, with the value differential being the second most common reason amid decades-high rates of inflation.
Ultimately, Mintel’s conclusion is that offering meal replacements can be a key revenue driver for grocery stores and supermarkets in a world in which consumers are looking for more convenience and value. Two-thirds of the consumers surveyed said they are more likely to shop at grocery stores that have a wide selection of ready-made meals available.
Source: Canadian Grocer