Ways of operating in the retail food sector are always changing. This is also true within the supermarket space. Today’s informed individuals are increasingly demanding quality, fresh, and innovative foods. Additionally, these consumers also demand convenience be served as well as these first-rate products.
More grocery items are being purchased at non-traditional food retailers. These include Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Costco Wholesale Corporation, as well as pharmacies/drugstores, and specialty alternative grocers.
How are traditional grocery stores – chains and independents – addressing the dual issues of freshness and convenience? The following are ways they’re attempting to grow sales through serving their customers better:
1. Locally sourced products. It’s a given that products sourced locally will be on supermarket shelves plus supermarket counters quicker. Same-day produce and dairy deliveries from local suppliers ensure customers receive their most favorite meals fresher.
In addition, today’s savvy consumers would like to know wherever their foods are coming from. This enables these to easily and quickly trace their items origins should they experience any complications with them. Hence, locally sourced may be the new concept, which food retailers take presctiption board with in order to meet customer demands.
2. More specialized departments. Fresh products in grocery stores are coming increasingly from very specialized departments. These include artisan bakeries, market fresh fish and seafood departments, gourmet cheese departments, and produce departments offering more organic produce.
Artisan in-store bakeries (with products baked fresh daily) are providing breads as well as other goods with unbleached flour and healthy grain. Specialized departments emphasizing all-natural goods are quitting products containing MSG. Moreover, they’re providing consumers’ wishes for low-sodium, low or no sugar, plus gluten-free products.
3. Clean food. Industry is demanding ‘cleaner’ food. Therefore products with limited ingredients. Nonetheless, these limited ingredients have to be first-rate, without additives and preservatives. Consumers desire to discover how their vegetables and fruit are grown and processed. They would like to know if the meat they are buying is grain or grass-fed and whether it contains antibiotics or chemicals. Supermarkets are increasingly stocking meals that meet consumers’ needs during these areas.
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