Forecast 2019: The Prognosis for Edible Grocery
NATIONAL REPORT — Increased acceptance of convenience stores as a destination for fresh food is likely having a favorable impact on the edible grocery category, which is notable this year for how much pessimism shrank, rather than how much optimism grew.
Only 6.3 percent of c-store retailers this year say they expect average dollar sales and unit volume per store to decrease, down from the 20 percent who expected dollar sales to decrease in 2018 and 19.3 percent who expected unit volume to decrease last year, according to the results of the 2019 Convenience Store News Forecast Study.
A quarter of retailers believe dollar sales will rise in 2019, and 18.7 percent believe unit volume will improve. The overall net change forecasted for edible grocery is a 1.2-percent increase in dollar sales and 1.8-percent growth in unit volume.
Primary obstacles to category growth include online retailers and local competition from supermarkets, according to operators.
The 17th annual CSNews Forecast Study includes a Retailer Forecast and Supplier Forecast, both based on the results of a survey fielded in November 2018. Participants were asked to predict 2019 sales per store for a variety of product categories, as well as to share their opinions on overall business, economic and consumer trends. The Forecast Study also provides dollar and unit volume projections in key c-store product categories.