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FMI: Shoppers Optimistic Ahead Of Busy Holiday Meals Season

FMI holiday meals

Despite ongoing concerns about high prices, shoppers are optimistic about their financial situations heading into the holidays and are finding ways to meet their holiday meal needs at the grocery store, according to FMI – The Food Industry Association’s new “U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends, Holiday Season” report.

“While consumers are understandably concerned about their finances amid continued inflation heading into the holidays, shoppers are proving to be just as resilient when it comes to preparing for their holiday meal celebrations,” said Leslie G. Sarasin, president and CEO. 

Despite planning to make do with less this year, Sarasin noted shoppers remain excited for the holidays, “looking for deals, shopping around at different stores and cooking more meals at home.”

“Interestingly, while shoppers tell us they are saving money by going out to eat less, they are also taking advantage of expanded foodservice options at their local grocer,” she said. “Shoppers are increasingly enjoying hybrid meals that pair food made at home alongside semi- or fully- prepared items from the grocery store. 

“This hybrid approach can offer shoppers tremendous value during this hectic season by offering convenience and affordability for any holiday meal celebration.”

Cooking at home continues to be a key tactic used by shoppers to manage their expenses, with 31 percent in the report saying they are preparing meals at home more often, and more than half planning to cook and eat more of their meals at home in the coming year. 

Conversely, 60 percent of shoppers say they are dining out less, with 14 percent of shoppers say they plan to dine out more in 2024.  

In addition, 20 percent of shoppers say they are buying more groceries as a way to contain their food spending, which FMI said helps explain why the average weekly grocery spend per household sits at $155/week. 

While that is higher than the $148/week shoppers were spending last October, it is a decrease from the $164/week from February of this year.

Most shoppers are looking forward to the holidays this year, with 18 percent planning a celebration for more people than usual in December.

About FMI

As The Food Industry Association, FMI works with and on behalf of the entire industry to advance a safer, healthier and efficient consumer food supply chain. 

FMI brings a wide range of members together across the value chain — from retailers to producers to companies supplying critical services — to amplify the collective work of the industry.

Read more association news from The Shelby Report.

About the author

Sommer Stockton

Web Editor

Sommer joined The Shelby Report in January 2022 after graduating from Brenau University in Gainesville, GA with a B.A. and M.A. in Communications and Media Studies. Sommer is excited to learn about the grocery industry and share her findings with The Shelby Report's readers!

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