Seasonal celebrations including Halloween and Bonfire Night are set to bring a welcome boost to sales of red meat, dairy and potatoes, according to a new report from AHDB.
The report, titled ‘Importance of Seasonal Celebrations and Events’, explores how lucrative times of the year can provide opportunities for processors, retailers and foodservice channels.
Halloween and Bonfire Night have the third and fourth highest seasonal uplifts in grocery, beaten only by Christmas and Easter, AHDB says. Spend levels increase by £1.2 billion and £1.1 billion respectively, compared to an average two weeks of the year.
Both events promise to trigger a spike in pork and beef sales, as revellers fill up on hearty sharing meals, including roasting joints, mince and stewing products. Sausages and ambient frankfurters are a popular choice for Bonfire Night, while pork ribs are a favourite at Halloween, the report says. Pizza sales also spike at this time of year.
The dairy and potato sectors are expected to benefit as chips, wedges and jacket potatoes appear prominently on the menu, as well as warming hot drinks. In total, the celebrations are predicted to collectively add £2 billion to the food and drink sector.
AHDB retail insight manager Kim Malley said: “There are a number of events throughout the year which result in strong uplifts in food and drink sales, high levels of advertising spend and an influx of new product launches.
“We have seen that consumers love any excuse for a party! There are countless opportunities to be had from seasonal celebrations but it’s important to first understand what is in demand.”
While these celebrations are traditionally seen as being aimed at children, research company Kantar says 73 per cent of Halloween grocery sales last year came from households with no children – with the biggest spend uplift coming from under-28s.
However, AHDB says there is a void in the market for high quality, sophisticated products, meaning there are further opportunities to tap into this growing.
The report also looked at other seasonal events, including Christmas, which drives the highest seasonal uplift of £2 billion, followed by Easter at £1.3 billion.
Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day all bring a boost to red meat and dairy sales, with good opportunities for sausages and bacon, as well as some dairy products, such as yoghurt, for breakfast in bed.
Kim Malley said the importance of events is clear and processors, retailers and foodservice channels should capitalise on these peaks in sales, “whether that be through meal inspiration, in-store promotions and displays, new innovation or ensuring enough of the right products feature at the right time”.
She added: “It is crucial that industry looks ahead to future events as Brits love to party. Even ad-hoc events provide a boost in sales, particularly sporting events and royal weddings.”