Specialty Food Magazine

Winter 2020

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

Issue link: https://www.e-digitaleditions.com/i/1194330

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Page 32 of 115

The industry can expect to see more stores that strive for the "customization, premiumization, and experiential trifecta," says Daena Rexho, director of growth solutions, KeHE Foods. Expect smaller store formats with premium assortments, a high- quality, fresh-market feel, and community focus, and stores that leverage technology to enhance the experience, such as cashierless checkouts and click- and-collect capabilities. Rexho cites as examples Amazon Go, Meijer's Bridge Street Market, and Woodward Corner Market small-format stores, Giant's Heirloom Market, and the food-focused 7-Eleven lab test stores. Additionally, the convenience-store channel is poised to introduce more stores that cater to the natural/specialty consumer, along the lines of Green Zebra in the Pacific Northwest, she says. In store, retailers will continue to expand perimeter departments with more space devoted to specialty cheeses, deli, seafood, bulk foods, and prepared foods, says Rexho. Throughout the store, look for more refrigerated grab-and-go sections in key destinations, and more shelves dedicated to single-serve packs and more portable formats, such as soup cups, nut butter pouches, and microwaveable rice/grain meal cups. Retailers will also continue to call attention to their sustainability efforts throughout the store, says Rexho. "We're seeing more retailers taking steps to educate consumers at the shelf on the sustainable products they carry. This takes the education beyond the side panel and allows for some cool endcaps/displays." Other sustainability-related efforts include carrying upcycled produce and other products that use recycled materials, and offering discounts to consumers who bring their own container or mug, or who walk or bike to the store. Retailers have differing opinions on ecommerce's role in their operations. Caputo says his company's online sales have picked up after years of investment. "That took a huge amount of effort for many, many years that didn't pay any dividends, and then all of a sudden it is, which is great," he says. "That's an important channel for us, and I think that it will increase." Danielle Vogel, owner of Glen's Garden Market in Washington, D.C., however, says she believes the in-store experience will win out over ecommerce when it comes to specialty food retailing. "Specialty food retailers are the antidote to Amazon," she says. "It's been my belief and experience that our differentiator is the feeling folks get when they walk through our doors. We offer a sense of community and connectedness that can't be translated to online retailing." Glen's Garden Market experimented with online sales, but Vogel says the company discovered that its customers "were uninterested in buying our products on the internet—they chose experience over convenience. "Grocery delivery services just don't accord with our intention: to physically, emotionally, and intellectually connect our neighbors to each other in celebration and appreciation of food made here, by people who live here," she says. 30 SPECIALTY FOOD SPECIALTYFOOD.COM INDUSTRY OUTLOOK "We're seeing more retailers taking steps to educate consumers at the shelf on the sustainable products they carry. This takes the education beyond the side panel and allows for some cool endcaps/displays." Smaller formats with a fresh-market feel Community focus Natural/ specialty-centered convenience stores Cashierless checkouts and click-and- collect capabilities In-store sustainability programs and education More space for fresh departments More shelves dedicated to single-serve and grab-and-go 2020 OUTLOOK: RETAIL FORMAT AND FOOTPRINT TRENDS

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