Technomic: Potential Economic Shock from Coronavirus Pandemic is Unprecedented 

There is wide disagreement about whether COVID-19 will be an economic shock with a sharp recovery or if it will pull the economy into a sluggish recession. The previous worst quarter in U.S. history for GDP was Q2 2009, immediately after the economic crash. That quarter, the GDP dove by 3.9%, a fraction of the projections we are seeing as a result of COVID-19. The economic shock from this event is unprecedented.

Consumer spending on foodservice continues to drop. For the average consumer, Technomic research suggests that spending has declined by an estimated 45% from a typical week in February, with further planned reductions expected to come. Consumer demand is still present in the marketplace, but as the pandemic has heightened and concerns have grown, a new normal is setting in. Shelter-in-place and social distancing actions have resulted in...

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Wed. Mar 25, 2020

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Wed. Mar 18, 2020

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Technomic: Potential Economic Shock from Coronavirus Pandemic is Unprecedented 

There is wide disagreement about whether COVID-19 will be an economic shock with a sharp recovery or if it will pull the economy into a sluggish recession. The previous worst quarter in U.S. history for GDP was Q2 2009, immediately after the economic crash. That quarter, the GDP dove by 3.9%, a fraction of the projections we are seeing as a result of COVID-19. The economic shock from this event is unprecedented.

Consumer spending on foodservice continues to drop. For the average consumer, Technomic research suggests that spending has declined by an estimated 45% from a typical week in February, with further planned reductions expected to come. Consumer demand is still present in the marketplace, but as the pandemic has heightened and concerns have grown, a new normal is setting in. Shelter-in-place and social distancing actions have resulted in...

Full Story »
Apr 2 2:44 PM, General News



U.S. Plant-Based Retail Market Worth $5 Billion, Growing at 5X Total Food Sales

New data released today by the Plant Based Foods Association (PBFA) and The Good Food Institute (GFI) shows U.S. retail sales of plant-based foods have grown 11.4 percent in the past year, bringing the total plant-based market value to $5 billion.

The total U.S. retail food market has grown just 2.2 percent in dollar sales during this same period—and was flat in unit sales—showing that plant-based foods are a key driver of growth for retailers nationwide. This data covers the total grocery marketplace and was commissioned from SPINS.

The leading drivers of plant-based sales continue to be plant-based milks, meat, dairy alternatives in general, and plant-based meals. Sales of plant-based milks grew 5 percent over the past year, now making up 14 percent of...

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Apr 2 3:03 PM, General News


Kroger Provides Business Update Related to COVID-19

The Kroger Co. filed its annual report on Form 10-K and announced business updates in response to the impact from the novel coronavirus.

"Kroger's most urgent priority is to provide a safe environment for associates and customers, with open stores, comprehensive digital solutions and an efficiently-operating supply chain, so that our communities have access to fresh, affordable food and essentials," said Rodney McMullen, Kroger's chairman and CEO. "We are so proud of our dedicated associates who are on the front lines serving our customers when they need us most. A huge thank you to all of our associates, whose efforts are nothing short of heroic."

After experiencing strong sales in February, the COVID-19 pandemic triggered a significantly greater lift in...

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Apr 2 8:18 AM, General News


Canada's Food Price Report: Food Prices Expected to Rise 4% in 2020

Both Dalhousie University and the University of Guelph are issuing an update on Agri-food Analytics Lab's forecast for Canada's food prices for 2020. In December of last year, it was forecasted that food prices would increase between 2 and 4 percent, with meat increasing between 4 and 6 percent.

Considering the coronavirus pandemic, the analytics lab does not believe the overall forecast for food prices in 2020 will change. According to the update, food prices are expected to increase by no more than 4 percent, as predicted in December 2019. However, retail and processing sectors are under pressure to change food safety practices, to make customers feel safer. These new protocols will require...

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Apr 2 1:54 PM, General News


Red Robin Gourmet Burgers Provides Business and Operational Update Related to COVID-19

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc. announced several measures it is taking in response to the escalating COVID-19 pandemic.

Paul J.B. Murphy III, Red Robin’s President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “We are navigating an unprecedented time for our business, industry and country as we collectively work to combat the global COVID-19 crisis. With the health, safety, and well-being of Red Robin’s Team Members, Guests and communities as our top priority, we have shifted our restaurants to an off-premise model and are strictly adhering to CDC, state and local guidelines.”

Murphy added, “We are encouraged by our continuing off-premise sales momentum, which has more than doubled over the past two weeks compared to our trends before the impact of COVID-19. This will help mitigate the decline in comparable restaurant revenues due to the closure of dine-in services at substantially all Red Robin-operated restaurants and enable us to...

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Apr 2 8:18 AM, General News


NRF Chief Economist: Stopping the Pandemic is First Step to Restoring Sound Economy

In the April issue of the National Retail Federation’s Monthly Economic Review, NRF Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz says the coronavirus pandemic “has triggered shocks” – but that the underlying economy is sound.

“How quickly the country gets a handle on containing the virus will determine the degree of the impact on the economy and how soon businesses can reopen,” Kleinhenz wrote in the report. “We expect a severe contraction, and if the nation doesn’t get the virus under control the fallout will be worse.”

Gross domestic product that was growing at a 2.1 percent annual rate at the end of 2019 is “about to go into a mandated nosedive,” according to the report. And retail sales data for March...

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Apr 2 3:27 PM, General News


Shake Shack Provides Business Update

Shake Shack provided a business update today on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and steps the Company has taken to conserve cash and increase available liquidity to maximize financial flexibility until current market conditions stabilize.

“We are navigating through an unprecedented time that continues to evolve rapidly. Our message across the company has been to lead with hope, while acting on reality, and to make the necessary choices today to ensure our strength and growth continues for many years to come. We are taking the crucial steps to safeguard the health of our teams and communities, while we work to serve our guests to the best of our ability. In addition to our focus on the pre-ordering convenience of our Shack app and web channels, we are taking this moment to...

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Apr 2 3:33 PM, General News


Boston Market Puts Easter Dinner On the Table with Convenient Options

Boston Market is making it easier to put a home-style dinner on the table this Easter with free delivery, curbside pickup and numerous complete meal options now available. With selections that can be preordered and picked up (or available curbside) at restaurants across the country or shipped directly to your front door for free, Boston Market hopes to make family time the focus this Easter with simple meal solutions for all.

"With all that is happening around the world right now, we know that Easter celebrations will be different, and smaller, this year," said Boston Market Chief Executive Officer Eric Wyatt. "Our team at Boston Market would like to help with any type of Easter meal you might be planning, with numerous convenient options available for pickup, home delivery or...

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Apr 2 8:17 AM, General News


IFA Announces New Initiative to Ensure Truck Drivers have Access to Food on the Road

The International Franchise Association (IFA) today announced that it is working with the Owner–Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) and The American Trucking Associations (ATA) on a new project aimed at helping truck drivers to navigate the coronavirus pandemic.

Truck drivers are playing a unique and essential role keeping the economy functioning during this period of social distancing and quarantine. However, because increased restrictions on dine-in options, truck drivers are struggling to eat on the road and facing new challenges as they do their jobs. In short, their trucks are too big to fit in a drive-thru, it’s largely prohibited for..

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Apr 2 4:25 PM, General News


ANALYSIS: Turkey Thigh Meat and Pork Hams: Feeling the Export Pressure

Marketers of turkey thigh meat and boneless pork hams are certainly no stranger to some cross-protein competition...

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Apr 2 8:19 AM, Urner Barry


Performance Food Group Announces Partnerships and Corporate Actions

Performance Food Group Company announced several new partnerships and corporate actions to strengthen its business during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

“As we all adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic, our company is in a crucial position to keep our country’s food supply chain strong,” said George Holm, PFG Chairman, President & CEO. “We are proud of the tremendous effort and dedication shown by our talented associates who are working tirelessly to keep people fed during this time. In addition to working with our existing customers, we have formed several new partnerships, brought in new business and shared many of our associates with organizations that are experiencing labor shortages. PFG is also diligently assessing and managing how we spend our capital so that we are in the best financial position possible. With our new partnerships and...

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Apr 1 2:39 PM, General News


Consumer Confidence Index Declined Sharply in March

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index declined sharply in March, following an increase in February. The Index now stands at 120.0 (1985=100), down from 132.6 in February. The Present Situation Index – based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions – decreased from 169.3 to 167.7. The Expectations Index – based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business and labor market conditions – declined from 108.1 last month to 88.2 this month.

“Consumer confidence declined sharply in March due to a deterioration in the short-term outlook,” said Lynn Franco, Senior Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board. “The Present Situation Index remained relatively strong, reflective of an economy that was on solid footing, and prior to the recent surge in unemployment claims. However...

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Apr 1 8:17 AM, General News


U.S. Restaurant Chain Transactions Drop by 36% as Mandated Restaurant Dine-In Closures Take Effect

The mandated restaurant dine-in closures that took effect in most states beginning the week ending March 22 took a toll on U.S. restaurant transactions, reports The NPD Group. Total restaurant customer transactions declined by 36% in the week ending March 22 compared to same week year ago, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for 70 quick service, fast casual, midscale, and casual dining chains.

Customer transactions at quick service restaurants, which represent the bulk of restaurant industry transactions and have more off-premise business than full service restaurants, decreased by...

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Apr 1 8:17 AM, General News


Asian Consumers Are Rethinking How They Eat Past COVID-19 

Consumers across Asia have signaled their eating habits may change permanently once the world moves beyond the impact of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). In an exclusive Nielsen study of 11 Asian markets, only Japanese consumers say they are less likely to change their eating habits as a result of the global pandemic.

The study, the first in a wave of Nielsen explorations underway across 74 markets, indicates that consumers in Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, South Korea, Malaysia and Vietnam will rethink and re-prioritize the place eating at home has in their lives. In Chinese mainland, 86% said they would eat at home more often than before the outbreak. In other markets, a similar trend was observed with 77% of consumers in Hong Kong planning to eat at home more often than...

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Mar 31 8:17 AM, General News


Restaurants Offer Deals to Boost Traffic During the Coronavirus Pandemic 

Now that President Trump has extended social distancing guidelines until April 30th, consumers should expect to get food delivered, takeout, or from the drive-thru for the next month when they want to dine out. Restaurants are offering incentives to get consumers to eat away from home to generate income during these unprecedented times.

Taco Bell announced that the chain wants to give back to Americans this Tuesday, with a free Doritos Locos Taco for drive-thru guests. The restaurant is also offering free delivery through GrubHub on all orders more than $12.00. The chain will also be transforming its Taco Bell Trucks to...

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Mar 31 8:17 AM, Urner Barry


Retail Fresh Produce Demand Soars, but Landmines Remain During Coronavirus Pandemic 

The COVID-19 situation has created a surge in fresh produce demand in retail grocery, but challenges around foodservice, logistics, macroeconomics, and labor availability pose ongoing threats. While fresh produce sales through foodservice channels have largely dried up, consumers continue to stock up on grocery items, including fresh produce.

Logistics have been strained, both globally and domestically, but the industry is adapting rapidly. The imminent global recession and rapid climb in the value of the US dollar will continue to threaten global demand, even after the virus is contained. Labor availability constraints and increases in...

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Mar 31 8:16 AM, General News


Mar 30 11:27 AM, Urner Barry

VIDEO: New COMTELL Spotlight - Improved Charting and History Pages

Our team at Urner Barry has been working relentlessly on an overhaul of our flagship online service COMTELL.  Today we are putting a spotlight on...

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Perdue Farms Confirms Positive Case of COVID-19 at Georgia Production Facility 

Perdue Farms learned that an Associate at the Perry, Georgia Cook Plant, who has not been to work for more than a week, has tested positive for COVID-19. Perdue is unable to disclose additional details around this individual in accordance with privacy laws. Upon receiving this notification, the company immediately enacted its pandemic response protocols, which follow strict guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including:

  • Notifying and coordinating response procedures with all pertinent parties (local health officials, onsite USDA inspector, Perdue HR and Wellness Staff, Coronavirus Response Leader, and facility Director of Operations...
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Mar 30 9:46 AM, General News


Urner Barry's Coronavirus Special Report

Urner Barry is the leading provider of protein market news and information in the food industry. Through daily canvasses of the trade and an unrivaled historical database, our analysts are uniquely positioned to report on underlying conditions and significant disruptors to the market.

In this special report, Urner Barry reporters outline the biggest impacts in the commodity protein markets seen so far due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. The insights provided here are powered by Urner Barry’s premier information platform, COMTELL. The situation continues to develop...

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Mar 27 9:30 AM, Urner Barry


ANALYSIS: Assessing COVID-19’s Initial Impact on the Chicken Market

Although COVID-19 is a relatively new challenge here in the US, its acute and unparalleled impact on spot market dynamics cannot be overstated...

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Mar 27 8:34 AM, Urner Barry


Wendy's Provides Coronavirus Update and Actions Taken

The Wendy's Company announced an update on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Company's business.

"This is an unprecedented time, and we are focused on the actions where we can make a positive difference. To that end, we have taken several precautionary steps to advance public health goals, maintain essential access to high quality food, support our franchisees, and safeguard our team members and customers from the spread of COVID-19," said President and CEO Todd Penegor. "As we navigate any challenges we face, we'll do it...

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Mar 27 8:21 AM, General News


FSIS Loosens Labeling Enforcement, Allows Foodservice Items Easier Access to Retail

The United States Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced labeling flexibilities for products that were initially intended to head to the foodservice sector but have been rerouted for retail establishments.

FSIS broke down three situations which describe how product can move to retail with certain labeling deviations. These new allowances only apply to product that has already undergone production.

Product that is being produced is expected to meet all requirements.

Labeling at a Federal Establishment

Products made at a Federal establishment intended for HRI...

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Mar 27 8:20 AM, SeafoodNews


National Restaurant Association Cancels Upcoming May Show

The National Restaurant Association Show, which was set to take place in Chicago from May 16-19, has been canceled. 

“After many weeks of monitoring the evolving situation around COVID-19, including guidance from the CDC and the Governor of Illinois, it is with great regret that we announce the unavoidable cancellation of this year’s National Restaurant Association Show,” an update on the show website explained. 

This is not the only food show to be canceled due to the coronavirus. Natural Products Expo West, which was set for...

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Mar 26 11:56 AM, SeafoodNews


Coronavirus Impact Leads to Highest Unemployment Claims in U.S. History 

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, during the week ending March 21st, the increase in initial unemployment claims due to the impact of the coronavirus reached a record high. States are continuing to cite service industries broadly, particularly foodservice. Additional industries also cited include social services, transportation, warehouses, and manufacturing industries.

A record 3,283,000 people filed claims for unemployment in the United States last week as the coronavirus pandemic shut down large parts of the economy. The labor department reported that the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims showed an increase of 3,001,000 from the previous week's revised level.

This marks the highest level of claims in the history of the seasonally adjusted series. The previous high was 695,000 in October of 1982. The previous week's level was revised up by...

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Mar 26 10:41 AM, Urner Barry


An Updated List of Every State That Has Closed Restaurants Due to the Coronavirus 

Editor's note: This story was updated at 12:15 p.m. on Thursday, March 26.

With cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the U.S. continuing to grow, a number of states are taking action to stop the spread. Lawmakers across the country have implemented bans on restaurants and bars, as well as large gatherings. Some states have yet to take such action, but restaurants on an individual level are choosing to shutter for the time being.

Meanwhile, President Trump recommended on Monday afternoon that people avoid... 

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Mar 26 8:26 AM, SeafoodNews


ANALYSIS: Heightened Buyer Urgency Contributing to Reduced Turkey Stocks

Despite the pre-occupation with COVID-19 and its impact on the global protein markets as a whole, turkey freezer stocks are providing...

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Mar 26 8:26 AM, Urner Barry


Yum Brands Closing 7,000 Stores Globally Due to COVID-19

Yum Brands is closing 1,000 Pizza Hut Express outlets and at least 900 U.K. KFC stores in a group of 7,000 restaurant outlets the Louisville, Kentucky-based company said it is closing globally, according to a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing and the Louisville Courier-Journal newspaper.

As the parent company of those two brands, as well as the Mexican-American QSR, Taco Bell, and the fast casual brand it just closed the sale on this month, The Habit Burger Grill, Yum has approximately 50,000 outlets globally.

The SEC filing relayed that the cause for the closings was the current COVID-19 pandemic and...

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Mar 26 8:22 AM, Urner Barry


Restaurants in America Offer Contactless Delivery Similar to China's Model

During the wake of the coronavirus outbreak in China, the country began taking extraordinary steps to prevent the spread of the virus by introducing contactless delivery services to keep customers and employees safe. As part of the process, customers order remotely via mobile phones or computers, and workers seal the meals in bags and place them in a pre-determined location without any human contact.

Some reports stated that these contactless delivery options also come with a card that provides the name and temperature of the person who made the food, as well as the person who delivered it. Quick service chains taking these precautions in China include McDonald's, Starbucks, and...

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Mar 26 8:20 AM, Urner Barry


Coronavirus Cases Continue to Impact Foodservice and Retail 

Cases of COVID-19 are continuing to surface as the virus spreads and more tests become available. States across the country are still enforcing restrictions and guidelines, encouraging people to social distance.

Retailers have gone from limiting hours to closing completely until further notice. Grocery stores are struggling to keep shelves stocked as consumers continue to panic buy and stockpile essentials. Amid all the hysteria, restaurants are creatively finding new ways to serve guests and generate income.

As of March 18th, the National Restaurant Association predicts that the foodservice industry could lose up to $225 billion and 7 million jobs. Mandatory restaurant closures have caused...

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Mar 26 8:20 AM, Urner Barry


Meat Sales Surged 77% the Week of March 15 Amid Growing COVID-19 Cases

The week ending March 8 saw a fast acceleration of meat sales in dollars, units and volume. As the number of school closures, social distancing guidelines and other COVID-19 related measures significantly sharpened the subsequent week, sales surged along with it. Thanks to the heroic efforts of everyone in the meat and poultry industry, the supply kept flowing. Retailers restocked their meat cases again and again as shoppers across the country stocked up on meat and poultry to feed their families nutritious meals.

Meat department sales without deli meat were up an incredible 76.9% over the week ending March 15, 2020 versus the comparable week in 2019, according to data insights firm IRI, and deli meat sales advanced...

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Mar 26 8:17 AM, General News


USDA Announces Expanded Red Meat Access to China as Phase One Trade Deal Moves Forward

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced continued progress in the implementation of agriculture provisions in the U.S.-China Phase One Agreement.

The new actions are led by increased access for red meat and poultry into China. According to the statement, U.S. beef producers, for the first time since 2003, will have access to nearly all beef products into China.

An expansion of pork products that will be allowed into Chinese ports was also included in the...

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Mar 25 10:24 AM, General News


Protein Alternatives Market Outlook to 2025; Dominated by Cargill

According to ResearchAndMarkets, the global protein alternatives market is projected to grow with a CAGR of 7.4% during the forecast period (2020-2025).

The market studied has witnessed a significant growth due to the increasing intolerance toward animal protein, thereby leading to the shift in preference of the meat-consuming population toward meat substitutes made of vegan protein, therefore, driving the market studied.

Consumers in developing regions, like Asia-Pacific and Africa, have started to incorporate more protein in their daily diets. Many companies operating in the market place have started to initiate...

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Mar 25 9:55 AM, General News


Nature's Fynd Raises $80 Million in Funding to Commercialize New Alternative Proteins

Nature's Fynd, a food tech company producing a protein from a microbe originally discovered in the geothermal springs of Yellowstone's ancient volcano, has raised $80 million in new funding.

The company was previously named Sustainable Bioproducts.

Production began this month at Nature's Fynd's new 35,000-square-foot manufacturing facility on the site of the historic Union Stockyards in Chicago's South Side. The company will commercialize food and beverage products across...

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Mar 25 9:32 AM, General News


China to Encourage Local Governments to Stockpile Poultry, Aquaculture Products

China said on Wednesday that it encourages local governments to temporarily stockpile poultry and aquaculture products in a bid to support the farming sectors after the unprecedented coronavirus cut production and supplies.

China will increase fiscal and tax support for poultry and aquaculture producers to help them survive the impact from coronavirus containment measures, according to a statement jointly issued by the state planner and the country's agriculture ministry.

Lockdowns on people and goods to curb the outbreak has disrupted logistics and production in the farming sector, threatening...

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Mar 25 8:37 AM, Urner Barry


Technomic: Foodservice Growth Projected to Decline 11-27% in 2020 Due to Coronavirus

COVID-19 continues to disrupt the entire foodservice industry and will only continue to have significant consequences. Using our current understanding of the crisis, we modeled out numerous scenarios to understand the scope of its impact. Presently, the expected foodservice impact ranges from a decline of 11% to 27% in year-over-year growth for 2020.

But while most of the changes seem grim, there are also signs of hope, specifically from the operators who are adapting their service model in response to the new environment.

It’s no surprise that travel and leisure will take the biggest hit. The business and industry sector is being severely impacted by office closures and...

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Mar 25 8:23 AM, General News


Instacart Announces Plans to Bring on 300,000 New Personal Shoppers Over the Next 3 Months

Instacart announced plans to bring on an additional 300,000 full-service shoppers over the next 3 months to meet the growing customer demand for grocery delivery and pickup in North America. Instacart has become an essential service for millions of customers who are relying on the platform to get access to the groceries and household goods they need in a safe, reliable and affordable way.

In the last few weeks, the company has seen order volume grow by more than 150% year-over-year, with average customer basket size also increasing by 15%. By more than doubling the size of its full-service shopper community, Instacart will be better positioned to meet this increase in...

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Mar 25 8:22 AM, General News


U.S. Restaurant Customer Transactions Decline by 8% in Week Ending March 15

With the COVID-19 pandemic spreading throughout the country, more people working from home, and social distancing guidance in place, U.S. restaurant customer transactions declined by 8% in the week ending March 15 compared to year ago, reports The NPD Group.

In the prior week ending March 8, the quick service restaurant chain “breakfast wars” helped to drive a 4% increase in total U.S. restaurant customer transactions compared to year ago, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides...

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Mar 25 8:21 AM, General News


India on 21-Day Lockdown to Contain Coronavirus 

India Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Tuesday afternoon that the country will be on a 21-day lockdown as they try to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The lockdown will begin at midnight local time and applies to all of India’s 36 states and territories. 

As of this writing there are 519 confirmed coronavirus cases in the country that is home to 1.3 billion people.

According to the guidelines, the Offices of the Government of India will remain closed except for some exceptions...

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Mar 24 1:15 PM, SeafoodNews


How Grocery Stores Are Responding to the Coronavirus Outbreak

Grocery stores are struggling to keep products on the shelves as Americans hunker down amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Prior to multiple states announcing “stay home” or “shelter in place” measures, people flocked to supermarkets to stock up on essentials. COVID-19 triggered “panic buying” across the U.S., with customers clearing shelves of toilet paper, canned goods, frozen foods, proteins and more. Now, with many people staying inside their homes, grocery stores across the U.S. are implementing new measures.

Some stores, like Kroger, are closing down their...

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Mar 24 11:47 AM, SeafoodNews


Sanderson Farms Confirms Employee has Tested Positive for Novel Coronavirus

Sanderson Farms, Inc. confirmed that an employee at the Company’s McComb, Mississippi, processing plant has tested positive for novel coronavirus. This individual’s work area was contained to one small processing table. “Upon learning of this case, we took a number of immediate steps to protect the health and safety of our employees,” said Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Sanderson Farms, Inc. “Following CDC and local health department guidelines, and procedures developed in consultation with an infectious disease physician, we identified six individuals in the work area who could be at risk, and those employees, along with...

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Mar 24 8:59 AM, General News


Rabobank: Coronavirus' Impact on the U.S. Beverage Landscape by Channel

Rabobank breaks down how coronavirus so far has impacted the US beverage landscape by channel: off-premise and on-premise.

Off-Premise: The Storm Before the Quiet?

The most up-to-date IRI data (through March 8) shows that consumers started to boost food and beverage spending as early as mid-February. Rabobank's sources, however, indicate that there was a drastic shift in consumer behavior starting on March 11 and March 12, at which time consumers really started stocking up on essentials (in fact, the CDC recommends having at least a two-week supply of “essentials”). Reportedly, one major supermarket chain saw record, single-day sales on...

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Mar 24 8:18 AM, General News


Papa John’s to Hire 20,000 New Team Members Immediately

Papa John’s announced the company is hiring up to 20,000 new restaurant team members.

“For anyone looking for immediate ways to earn an income, we’re making it quick and simple to apply, interview and be hired at Papa John’s,” said Marvin Boakye, Papa John’s chief people and diversity officer. “We want to add talented team members to our Papa John’s family across the country to deliver food safely to our customers’ doorsteps. We are in the unique position – as a restaurant that specializes in...

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Mar 24 8:18 AM, General News


Business Groups Send Letter to White House Calling for Economic Stabilization Efforts

The National Retail Federation was among 90 retail industry trade groups that sent a letter to the White House applauding the Trump Administration and House and Senate leadership for their efforts to protect public health and minimize the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The letter states, “The economic harm from social distancing and mandatory store closures is real. Layoffs and economic hardship will surely follow, particularly for smaller, specialty retailers and brands. The biggest single issue facing the industry right now is liquidity, and federal stimulus efforts must be swift and flexible enough to address the urgent need for access to credit to keep these businesses afloat.”

The retail industry, and the associated suppliers they support, are suffering cumulative losses that amount to tens of billions of dollars every week. As the nation’s largest...

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Mar 24 8:17 AM, General News


Yum China Provides Business Update 

Yum China Holdings, Inc. updated stakeholders on the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation.

The current COVID-19 situation is one of unprecedented scale and impact, and first and foremost we want to give thanks and appreciation to all the medical personnel, government workers, volunteers and other frontline workers who have put public health and safety above their own in fighting this global pandemic. At Yum China, our commitment has been to safety above all else -- safety for our employees, as they operate in this difficult environment; and safety for our customers, as they...

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Mar 23 9:33 AM, General News


Secretary Perdue Announces New USDA Administration Leadership

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced the appointment of David Wu to serve as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Administration at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

“Don Bice has played a critical role in ensuring USDA is the most efficient, effective, customer focused agency in the federal government. He has made great strides in the modernization of the Department and has carried out our vision with dedication and passion. I thank Don for his service on behalf of the American people and wish him well in the future,” said Secretary Perdue. “David Wu’s extensive experience and expertise make him a perfect fit for this role. I am confident that with...

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Mar 23 8:18 AM, General News


States are Enacting Shelter-in-Place Policies—What Does it Mean for the Food Industry?

On Thursday, California issued what’s known as a “shelter-in-place” policy, putting further restrictions on residents in order to curb the spread of COVID-19. The measure has been echoed in other states like Pennsylvania and New York, with many other states anticipated to follow suit. The new rules come after the death toll surpasses 200 in the U.S.

But what does it mean exactly?

The directive essentially mandates that people stay home and practice social distancing, while all non-essential businesses are closed. Residents can still go outside and may travel to procure essentials like food and seek medical care.

“Everyone is required to stay home except to get food...

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Mar 23 8:17 AM, Urner Barry


Protein Distributors Pivot to Direct to Consumer Model as Coronavirus Impacts Foodservice Sector

Outside of the box thinking from protein producers and distributors have led companies to pivot to a direct to consumer business model as the coronavirus halts the foodservice sector.

One company making headlines is Premier Meats. Located just outside of Los Angeles, California, Premier Meats has opened up its doors to the public for the first time. The company is selling its products which typically head to restaurants in the city, straight to local consumers.

Urner Barry market participants have reported following similar paths as Premier Meats to try and find a home for product. From providing pick up points at their facilities to offering...

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Mar 20 12:17 PM, Urner Barry


Urner Barry Introduces New Offering Designed to Help Companies via Strategic, Customized Consulting

Proud to welcome back Angel Rubio in new capacity as Economist for Urner Barry

March 20, 2020, Toms River, NJ – Urner Barry, the leading provider of protein market news and information in the food industry, is pleased to announce its newest offering designed to help customers develop better, data-driven business strategies through UB Consulting.

Brought to you by the leading commodity intelligence provider, UB Consulting offers unique insights using proprietary prices and trusted market indicators and statistics. The exclusive market perspective offered by our economists and analysts provides customers with premium insights into the datasets that....

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Mar 20 11:59 AM, Urner Barry


ANALYSIS: An Historical Look at Q1 Boneless Breast Performance

It almost goes without saying that the widespread impact of COVID-19 has left most food-oriented businesses scrambling to adapt to the rapidly developing and unpredictable swing in demand patterns...

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Mar 20 8:27 AM, Urner Barry


Coronavirus Outbreak Leads to Rise in Concerns Among Consumers 

Datassential has released its latest wave of coronavirus research, and as the virus continues to dominate headlines, consumers' concerns have grown. Retail shelves have been wiped clean of food and supplies, gatherings have been discouraged or cancelled, and restaurants are facing mandatory closures.

In just the past four days, concerns have risen significantly among consumers. With the acceleration of the coronavirus news cycle, about 71% of Americans now consider themselves “very familiar” with the situation, which is a jump of 13 points in half a week. Americans' personal concern for exposure is up by 8 points. As of this past weekend, 49% of consumers are “very concerned” about the risk and expressed huge concern for...

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Mar 20 8:22 AM, Urner Barry


National Restaurant Association Calls on Congress for Relief Amid Coronavirus Outbreak 

The National Restaurant Association called on President Trump and congressional leaders to provide immediate relief in the wake of government-mandated operational changes. The large-scale closures and restrictions on gatherings have created an economic hardship that will ripple through every community in this country.

Early economic forecasts reveal the industry will sustain at least a $225 billion loss and be forced to eliminate between 5 to 7 million jobs over the next three-months; however, the White House and others are projecting a potentially longer period for reduced operations. In a letter to the Administration and Congress, the National Restaurant Association outlined several options that can provide...

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Mar 20 8:22 AM, General News


Darden Restaurants Reports Fiscal 2020 Third Quarter Results

Darden Restaurants, Inc., reported its financial results for the third quarter ended February 23, 2020.

Third Quarter 2020 Financial Highlights, Comparisons Versus Same Fiscal Quarter Last Year

Total sales increased 4.5% to $2.35 billion driven by the addition of 40 net new restaurants and a blended same-restaurant sales increase of 2.3%

Same-restaurant sales by brand:

  • +2.1% for Olive Garden
  • -1.6% for Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen
  • +3.9% for LongHorn Steakhouse...
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Mar 20 8:21 AM, General News


Rabobank: Coronavirus and African Swine Fever to Shake Up Global Poultry Markets

The outlook for global poultry in 2020 will be materially affected by the current coronavirus pandemic, and the ongoing African swine fever (ASF) challenges in the pork industry will bring additional complexity to global markets.

Rabobank expects a further drop in pork production in Asia this year, which could lead to potential growth in local poultry production and international trade, if rising supply chain challenges can be managed. As coronavirus is now expected to cause a global economic slowdown, poultry demand could...

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Mar 20 8:21 AM, General News


ANALYSIS: January Turkey Exports: Ups and Downs

Upon first glance, the latest turkey export data for the month of January appears to follow closely in the wake of December’s choppy year-end close...

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Mar 19 8:28 AM, Urner Barry


Chipotle Announces Partnership with Uber Eats to Expand Delivery Service 

Chipotle Mexican Grill and Uber Eats have announced a national delivery partnership. For the first time, consumers can get the Chipotle delivered through the Uber Eats app and ubereats.com. This month, the Delivery Fee will be waived on any Chipotle order of $10 or more on the Uber Eats app and ubereats.com.

Given recent world events, Chipotle and Uber Eats are working together to make the delivery experience easier for guests. Uber Eats users can leave a note in the app for "no-contact" deliveries, which involve a driver leaving the food at the doorstep rather than an in-person exchange. Digital orders from Chipotle are customized via the brand's Delivery Kitchens, which are comprised of a dedicated ingredient station and operated by...

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Mar 19 8:25 AM, General News


Emerging Consumer Demands Lead to Increasing Role of In-Store Technology 

According to Nielsen, brick and mortar retail may be preparing for a resurgence. Consumer demands are pointing to an increasing role of technology in stores. Investments in in-store technology spiked nearly 60% to $3.7 billion in 2019. Research also forecasts that digital natives will open another 850 physical stores by 2023.

Trends for fast-moving consumer goods may follow, as consumers have never been more receptive to technology than they are currently. Approximately 64% of consumers claim their lives are getting busier, providing...

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Mar 19 8:22 AM, Urner Barry


Yum! Brands Completes Acquisition of The Habit Restaurants

Yum! Brands, Inc. announced the completion of its acquisition of The Habit Restaurants, Inc., following the approval by The Habit Burger Grill stockholders. The transaction marks the addition of the first fast-casual concept to Yum! Brands’ portfolio of iconic global restaurant brands.

Yum! Brands acquired all of the issued and outstanding common shares of The Habit Burger Grill for $14 per share in cash or a total of approximately $375 million. Yum! Brands funded the transaction using cash on hand and available...

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Mar 19 8:19 AM, General News


Kerry Doughty, Meat Industry Icon, Passes Away

Kerry Doughty, former president and CEO of Butterball, passed away on Tuesday, March 17th, following a long battle with cancer. Kerry stepped down from his position at Butterball in December 2019 after 10 years with the company and more than 35 years in the meat industry.

Under Kerry's leadership, Butterball set a record-breaking year in 2016, launched its first no antibiotics ever and organic product lines, and saw the creation of Butterball's Animal Care and Well-Being program and certification under American Humane.

Kerry was described by his colleagues as a great leader with a big heart, evidenced by the importance he placed on giving back to communities. Kerry was an ardent supporter of...

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Mar 18 8:29 AM, Urner Barry

Coronavirus to Impact Eating Behaviors Across Multiple Sectors

According to recent research from Datassential, the coronavirus will impact consumers' eating behaviors across multiple sectors. While it is impossible to predict precisely how the virus will spread, insights can be shared as to how consumers will react.

Restaurants are vulnerable to dramatic traffic declines. Coronavirus has led to nearly 60% of consumers expressing concern about eating out, with one in five "definitely" avoiding doing so. The fear is most significant among parents, urban dwellers, and higher earners. Datassential predicts that if the situation worsens, family dining and kids meals will be the most impacted, particularly for restaurant brands located in city centers. About 20% of those surveyed would...

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Mar 18 8:28 AM, Urner Barry


Mar 17 9:06 AM, Urner Barry Video

VIDEO: Coronavirus Incites Panic Buying at Retail; Nationwide Restaurant Closures

Coronavirus Incites Panic Buying at Retail; Nationwide Restaurant Closures Due to Coronavirus; Sponsored by The Meat Buyer's Guide Online
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Quick Service Breakfast Wars Help Drive Transactions Up Despite Coronavirus

The 24/7 news cycle around the coronavirus (COVID-19) didn’t deter consumers from sampling an array of breakfast promotions offered by quick service restaurant (QSR) chains last week. The QSR chain “breakfast wars” helped to drive a 4% increase in total U.S. restaurant customer transactions for the week ending March 8 compared to same period year ago, reports The NPD Group.

QSR chains, which represent the bulk of U.S. restaurant customer transactions, also grew transactions by 4% in the week ending March 8, the highest gain in...

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Mar 17 8:58 AM, General News


Urner Barry Market Coverage Remains Uninterrupted During COVID-19 Pandemic

As the situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic continues to escalate and create uncertainty, Urner Barry is committed to providing our customers with constant updates on the impacts in the food and agriculture industry. Monitoring changes and disruptions to normal supply and demand patterns, we will continue to publish the critical information you need to stay abreast of the situation and its impact on the markets. We understand our customers’ reliance on our market intelligence is crucial when operating under normal business conditions, and is especially necessary in times like this. We have a robust business continuity plan so you can have uninterrupted access to the market coverage you need.

Our editorial team is providing updates throughout the day. COMTELL subscribers can...

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Mar 17 8:25 AM, Urner Barry


New COMTELL Spotlight: Improved Charting and History Pages

Anticipating market fluctuations has never been more important for the protein industry. Comtell users leverage years of historical pricing and trends to...

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Mar 17 8:24 AM, Urner Barry


UPDATE Mar 17, 2020: Urner Barry’s Executive Conference 2020 Postponed, New October Dates Announced

Due to the escalation of the situation concerning the COVID-19 pandemic, and the uncertainty surrounding the latest statement from MGM on the temporary closing of their Las Vegas resorts, including the Bellagio, Urner Barry has made the decision to postpone the annual Executive Conference to October 4-6, 2020. The event was originally scheduled for April 26-28, 2020. The venue will remain the Bellagio in Las Vegas for the new dates in October.

The wellbeing of our community and colleagues remains our number one priority so, whilst this decision has not been taken lightly, we feel that moving the event further back in the year will provide the best possible opportunity for you to meet your business needs.

“Urner Barry’s decision to postpone the conference is in the best interest of all of us...

Full Story »
Mar 17 8:23 AM, Urner Barry


Grocery Stores Start Cutting Hours and Limiting Quantities as Coronavirus Incites Panic Buying 

Consumers are flocking to supermarkets and stockpiling supplies in preparation to quarantine due to the coronavirus outbreak. Some of the largest grocery chains are announcing measures to maintain supplies and keep stores clean. Across the country, toilet paper and canned foods are being completely bought up as cases continue to rise.

Now, grocers are beginning to cut hours and are limiting sale quantities per customer on items that are in high demand.

Walmart is taking preventative measures to keep stores clean and maintain a healthy environment. The retailer is also pursuing easier ways to sanitize shopping carts, and are evaluating whether to modify store hours at some 24-hour facilities to allow for additional cleaning. Walmart said in a press release that they will be working to...

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Mar 16 12:46 PM, Urner Barry


Restaurants Limit Business to Prevent Spread of Coronavirus 

Due to the spread of the coronavirus in the United States, restaurants and bars are closing or limiting business to prevent further contamination. Governors in states including California, Ohio, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Washington have closed restaurants, bars, and wineries. Meanwhile, mayors of major cities throughout the country have ordered similar restrictions. These decisions come amid growing pressure for state and city governments to act as the number of coronavirus cases in the United States is rising. At the time of this publication, there are over 3,800 cases throughout the country.

Several restaurant chains announced that they will be closing their dining rooms, switching to take out or delivery models until further notice. Chick-fil-A announced...

Full Story »
Mar 16 10:23 AM, Urner Barry


Mar 16 8:54 AM, Urner Barry Video

VIDEO: Dining Out During Coronavirus Fears; Movers of the Week

Restaurant Chains Grapple with Coronavirus Fears; Movers of the Week from the HRI Buyers Guide; Sponsored by Obsono's Market Insight
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President Trump Declares National Emergency in Response to Coronavirus

In response to the growing number of coronavirus cases in the United States, President Trump declared a national emergency. The declaration will allow for more federal funding to combat the virus, and provide access to more federal aid for states and municipalities.

According to a letter Democrats sent the president earlier this week, an emergency declaration would allow states to request a 75% federal-cost share for expenses that include emergency workers, medical tests, and medical supplies.

In a news conference, President Trump addressed the vigilant efforts to defeat the virus. President Trump stated this declaration will release...

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Mar 13 3:50 PM, Urner Barry


ANALYSIS: Keeping Tabs on YoY Chicken Prices

With Q2 just around the corner, we thought it would be a good opportunity to gain some perspective on the YoY performance of some key items within the chicken complex...

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Mar 13 10:21 AM, Urner Barry


Mar 13 10:04 AM, Urner Barry

VIDEO: Welcome to the Newly Redesigned COMTELL! 

Our team at Urner Barry has been working relentlessly on an overhaul of our flagship online service COMTELL, with a laundry list of improvements based on years of customer feedback. The results have been better than we could have anticipated. Accessing protein quotations, news and analysis has never been easier. If you haven't migrated to new COMTELL yet, click HERE for access...

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Chipotle Offers Free Delivery Through March

Chipotle Mexican Grill announced that it will offer Free Delivery starting March 15 through March 31 to make life easier for guests. Delivery orders are customized via Chipotle's Delivery Kitchen, which is comprised of a dedicated ingredient line operated by a special team. The Delivery Kitchen provides guests with the same great Chipotle experience whether they choose to dine in, order ahead and pick up, or have it delivered.

Chipotle has also introduced a new delivery tracker to provide step-by-step real-time updates, so you can follow your meal from the restaurant to your location. Prior to placing their orders, Chipotle customers can leave special instructions for delivery drivers in the Chipotle app and Chipotle.com to limit direct contact...

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Mar 13 9:27 AM, General News


Mar 13 8:37 AM, Urner Barry Video

VIDEO: Coronavirus Impacts Meat Consumption; Chicken Price Check

Coronavirus Impacts Meat Consumption in China; Keeping Tabs on YoY Chicken Prices; Sponsored by Obsono's Market Insight Report
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Full Story »

Rabobank: Impact of Coronavirus on European Foodservice

Coronavirus is rapidly spreading across Europe. The travel & tourism (T&T) industry, including domestic and international visitors and business travel, is one of the most affected by the situation. Since travelers represent a significant portion of foodservice demand, revenues for restaurants and bars will decline. The magnitude of this decline will depend on the duration of the crisis, the weight of travel-related demand on total foodservice revenue, and the impact of coronavirus on economic growth.

Travel-Related Demand Under Pressure

Although disruptions to daily life outside Italy (under quarantine) are limited, event cancellations, corporate policies banning business trips, and changes in consumer behavior are...

Full Story »
Mar 13 8:27 AM, General News


Coronavirus Leads to Panic Buying, Stockpiling at Retail Locations Across the U.S.

Check the local supermarket, head straight to the aisle with the soap, hand sanitizer and other cleaning supplies. Nothing remains.

As COVID-19 (coronavirus), continues to spread throughout the United States, consumers have begun to panic buy and stockpile on cleaning supplies and “quarantine food.”

As cleaning supplies are flying off the shelves, non-perishables and other food items are also seeing plenty of action as Americans gear up for an extended stay at home.

Like an incoming snowstorm or weather event, Americans have loaded up shopping...

Full Story »
Mar 12 10:24 AM, SeafoodNews


ANALYSIS: Whole-Body Toms: A Q1 Assessment

A central focus of turkey market participants has been whole body birds, and with good reason. Frozen turkeys have begun to...

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Mar 12 9:36 AM, Urner Barry


Coronavirus Impacts Meat Consumption in China 

One of the many effects from the coronavirus outbreak in China is the impacts it has had on food consumption and the demand for meat.

At the height of the outbreak, nearly all foodservice establishments were closed, with some attempting to resume business now. However, restaurants that have managed to remain open are facing a sharp decline as consumers are staying indoors. A few restaurants switched to a delivery-only model during this time to help cash flow, but consumers are still hesitant of ordering and interacting with delivery drivers.

According to Darin Friedrichs, Senior Asia Commodity Analyst at INTL FCStone, consumer sentiment has been improving as China continues to...

Full Story »
Mar 12 9:26 AM, Urner Barry


Mar 12 8:35 AM, Urner Barry Video

VIDEO: Red Meat Exports; Whole-Body Toms Analysis

Rapid Start to 2020 for Pork Exports; Beef Trends Higher; Whole-Body Toms Analysis: A Q1 Assessment; Sponsored by COMTELL's Phone App
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Full Story »

United Natural Foods Reports Second Quarter Fiscal 2020 Results

United Natural Foods, Inc. reported financial results for the second quarter of fiscal 2020 (13 weeks) ended February 1, 2020.

Second Quarter Fiscal 2020 Highlights

  • Net Sales of $6.14 billion compared to $6.15 billion in last year's fiscal second quarter
  • Total outstanding net debt reduced by $149 million compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2020
  • Gross margin rate increased compared to last year's fiscal second quarter
  • Second quarter GAAP and adjusted results include charges of $0.44 per diluted share associated with three customer bankruptcies
  • Update to...
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Mar 12 8:30 AM, General News


47 Members of Congress Send Letter Requesting U.S. Chicken Market Access to the United Kingdom

Arkansas Representative Steve Womack (R, AR-3), along with 46 Members of Congress, yesterday sent a letter to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer requesting that U.S. chicken products be included in any new trade agreement with the United Kingdom.

The letter specifically addresses the European Union’s long-standing, unscientific ban on U.S.-exported chicken due to an American practice of using chlorine during processing. The U.K. formally adhered to the E.U.’s food safety standards in 1997 and American chicken has been banned from entry since that time.

“With almost one of five pounds of chicken being exported, a robust and expanding overseas market is extremely important to the economic health and well-being of the U.S. chicken industry,” said National Chicken Council President Mike Brown. “Including U.S. chicken is critical in...

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Mar 12 8:29 AM, General News


Daring Launches Plant-Based Chicken at Sprouts Farmers Market Locations Nationwide

Daring Foods has announced its first retail partnership with healthy grocer Sprouts Farmers Market.

Starting today, 10-ounce pouches of original Daring pieces will be available for $9.99 at more than 340 Sprouts Farmers Market locations across the country. Daring is gluten free and includes 20 grams of protein per serving. This milestone offering is the first non-breaded, plant-based chicken alternative to be introduced at Sprouts.

"With this launch, we are excited to bring Daring pieces to dinner tables across America," said Ross Mackay, Co-Founder and CEO of Daring Foods. "Daring is leading the charge as...

Full Story »
Mar 12 8:24 AM, General News


Weis Markets Reports Results for 2019 and Fourth Quarter

Weis Markets reported total sales of over $3.5 billion for the 52-week period ended December 28, 2019, up 1.0 percent compared to the same period a year ago, while annual comparable store sales increased 1.5 percent. Income from operations increased $2.0 million, or 2.4 percent to $84.6 million over the same period in 2018.

The Company's net income for fiscal year 2019 increased 8.4 percent to $68.0 million compared to $62.7 million in 2018 while earnings per share for the same period increased $0.20 to $2.53 per share.

The Company's 2019 sales and comparable-store sales continued to benefit from investments in its Low, Low Price (LLP) program which offers price reductions on 7,000 private-brand items. The Company's sales also benefited from...

Full Story »
Mar 12 8:23 AM, General News


SpartanNash Promotes Thomas Swanson

SpartanNash announced the promotion of Thomas E. Swanson to Executive Vice President and General Manager, Corporate Retail.

Mr. Swanson was named Senior Vice President and General Manager, Corporate Retail in October 2018, responsible for leading the corporate retail business unit for all corporate retail banners and Quick Stop fuel and convenience centers. Mr. Swanson’s energy and passion for retail have been instrumental in SpartanNash’s success. His impact has resulted in positive retail comparable sales for the last two quarters. Mr. Swanson also has overseen the transition and integration of more than...

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Mar 11 10:26 AM, General News


Mar 11 8:33 AM, Urner Barry Video

VIDEO: Alternative Proteins on Menus; Tilapia Tariff Exclusions

Alternative Proteins See Impressive Growth on Menus; USTR Denies Tilapia Tariff Exclusion Requests; Sponsored by Obsono’s Market Insight Report
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Full Story »

Mar 10 8:59 AM, Urner Barry Video

VIDEO: Chinese Retail During Coronavirus; Shrimp Imports Surge

Opportunity Looms to Chinese Retailers Despite Coronavirus; Shrimp Analysis: January Imports Surge; Sponsored by The Meat Buyer's Guide Online
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Full Story »

Alternative Proteins See Impressive Growth on Menus 

According to a recent webinar by Datassential, trending dishes are driven by a variety of factors, including global influences, mash ups, and plant based. Among these factors, plant based is especially driving several growing dishes. The research found that 44% of consumers are trying to increase their intake of vegetable-based protein. Meanwhile, vegan items have seen an increase of 621% in menu penetration over the past decade. However, consumers stated that plant-based or vegetarian diets are loved the most, while vegan diets are hated the most.

Products that attempt to mimic the texture and taste of meat are growing on menus as alternative proteins. The research found that 69% of consumers would at least occasionally order a plant-based meat if available. In the past four years, the plant-based burger’s menu penetration has increased by...

Full Story »
Mar 10 8:22 AM, Urner Barry


Coronavirus Impact on Imports Expected to Be Larger and Longer than Previously Expected

The coronavirus outbreak is expected to have a longer and larger impact on imports at major U.S. retail container ports than previously believed as factory shutdowns and travel restrictions in China continue to affect production, according to the Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.

“There are still a lot of unknowns to fully determine the impact of the coronavirus on the supply chain,” NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold said. “As factories in China continue to come back online, products are now flowing again. But there are still issues affecting cargo movement, including...

Full Story »
Mar 10 8:22 AM, General News


Chipotle Announces Changes to Its Board Composition

Full Story »
Mar 9 9:58 AM, General News


Nielsen: Opportunity Looms to Chinese Retailers Despite Epidemic Outbreak

Nielsen closely tracked the latest developments in the retail industry and released the report titled "COVID-19 is a Challenge, but also an Opportunity, for China's Retail Industry."

The research involves key retail companies and over 10,000 traditional grocery stores, and offers in-depth analysis of the retailers' challenges and responses to the outbreak, as well as the changes and opportunities the sector will face once the epidemic is over.

The outbreak of the novel coronavirus epidemic at the beginning of 2020 has adversely influenced China's retail industry, especially the brick-and-mortar retailers. But some retailers, who got well prepared and...

Full Story »
Mar 9 9:55 AM, General News


USDA Makes It Easier, Safer to Feed Children in California Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has approved a request from California to allow meal service during school closures to minimize potential exposure to the coronavirus. These meals are available at no cost to low-income children – and are not required to be served in a group setting – to ensure kids receive nutritious meals while schools are temporarily closed.

“USDA stands with the people of California as a part of a federal-wide coordinated response,” said Brandon Lipps, Deputy Under Secretary for USDA’s Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services. “The flexibility provided by the waiver approved will help ensure...

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Mar 9 8:54 AM, General News


Research and Markets: Global Online Grocery Market Outlook

Despite the origins in the late 1990s by Tesco, despite Ocado, despite Peapod, despite Amazon's acquisition of Whole Foods, despite Walmart's investments, despite the French drives pioneered by Chronodrive (Auchan) online grocery has still not been solved.

So where is online grocery going?

Grocery stores are more and more seeing a transformation towards becoming hybrids for pick up/delivery and shopping and often foodservice too. Especially players such as Freshippo or JD.com stores in Asia have been at the forefront of this development, but this is not really groundbreakingly new for the West either. In the US all the major grocers are rolling out... 

 

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Mar 9 8:41 AM, General News


Mar 9 8:35 AM, Urner Barry

VIDEO: Clearwater Seafoods for Sale; Movers of the Week

Clearwater Seafoods Up for Sale; Movers of the Week from the HRI Buyers Guide; Sponsored by Obsono's Market Insigh
If you cannot see this video, please click here
 
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US Foods to Acquire Smart Foodservice Warehouse Stores

US Foods announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Smart Foodservice Warehouse Stores from funds managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management for $970 million in cash.

Smart Foodservice operates 70 small-format cash and carry stores across California, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Utah and Montana that serve small and mid-sized restaurants and other food business customers with a broad assortment of products. Founded in 1955 and headquartered in the greater Portland, Oregon area, Smart Foodservice employs approximately 900 associates. Smart Foodservice had 2019 revenues of...

Full Story »
Mar 6 9:45 AM, General News


Mar 6 8:41 AM, Urner Barry Video

VIDEO: Solo Diner Visits Increase; Chicken White Meat Analysis

Solo Diners Represent Largest Share of Restaurant Visits; All Eyes on Chicken White Meat; Sponsored by Obsono's Market Insight Report
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Full Story »

Walmart Adds Grocery to Flagship App

For years, Walmart has had two mobile apps: the Walmart app and the Walmart Grocery app. Customers navigate both apps, but would like an easier way to shop without having to switch between the two. 

The company is excited to announce its adding Walmart Grocery to the flagship Walmart app. Now, customers can access everything Walmart has to offer in one, definitive experience – the Walmart app.

Here’s what the updated Walmart app offers...

Full Story »
Mar 6 8:24 AM, General News


Sysco Announces Leadership Promotions

Sysco Corporation announced two senior leadership promotions. Eve McFadden has been promoted to senior vice president of legal, general counsel and corporate secretary, after being promoted to vice president and general counsel in 2019. Since joining Sysco in 2008, Eve has provided effective leadership in the areas of employment law, antitrust compliance, and ethics and compliance. In addition, her skills in building strong partnerships within the business has contributed to the company’s success.

In her new role, Eve will continue to act as general counsel, adding responsibility for Sysco’s Enterprise Risk Management function, under which she recently established a new team focused on developing a global framework for Sysco’s environment, health and...

Full Story »
Mar 6 8:23 AM, General News


U.S. Demand for Single-Use Foodservice Products to Rise

According to a new Freedonia Group analysis, the US market for single-use foodservice products is forecast to see healthy annual growth of 3.4% through 2023, when demand is expected to near $25 billion. The best opportunities exist for products with features that support use in fast-growing applications – such as tamper-evidence and improved insulation for meal delivery – as well as those sourced from sustainable materials that reflect growing consumer and government concerns about the environmental impact of single-use plastics.

Containers and cups/lids to account for two-thirds of market gains through 2023

Containers and cups (along with their respective lids) are by far the most commonly used types of foodservice disposables and will together account for two-thirds of all new demand through 2023. Highlights include...

Full Story »
Mar 6 8:22 AM, General News


ANALYSIS: All Eyes on Chicken White Meat

In a somewhat unexpected change of pace, chicken white meats have recently begun to gain some upward price momentum...

Full Story »
Mar 6 8:21 AM, Urner Barry


World Food Prices Drop in February

World food prices declined in February for the first time in four months due to a sharp fall in the export prices of vegetable oils, partly driven by fears that the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak will slow global demand.

The FAO Food Price Index, which tracks monthly changes in the international prices of commonly-traded food commodities, averaged 180.5 points in February, down 1.0 percent from the previous month but still 8.1 percent higher than a year earlier.

The FAO Vegetable Oil Index declined 10.3 percent from January, with international palm oil prices falling by even more on account of higher-than-expected output in Malaysia, a temporary drop in...

Full Story »
Mar 5 10:17 AM, General News


Kroger Delivers on Key 2019 Commitments

The Kroger Co. reported its fourth quarter and Fiscal Year 2019 results and will update investors on how the Restock Kroger framework is repositioning the company to create value for shareholders, customers and associates.

Comments from Chairman and CEO Rodney McMullen

"We are pleased with our 2019 results and improving trends in our supermarket business. We delivered on our commitments for ID sales without fuel, adjusted FIFO operating profit, and cost savings in addition to generating over $100 million of incremental operating profit through alternative profit streams in 2019. We also delivered strong adjusted free cash flow during...

Full Story »
Mar 5 10:09 AM, General News


Taco Bell Unveils Plans For New, More Experiential Cantina Restaurant Concepts

After redefining the quick service restaurant (QSR) experience in 2015 with its urban Cantina concept, Taco Bell today announced plans to test new “fast social” restaurants that will once again push the boundaries of both the industry and the guest experience. The development plans—including new Cantinas and conversions of traditional Taco Bell restaurants—are one of the brand’s key growth strategies to becoming a $20 billion brand with 10,000 restaurants globally in this decade.

Initially known for being a staple in suburban communities, Taco Bell successfully made its way into metropolitan cities with the introduction of its urban-inline restaurants. With this new wave of growth came a more simplified and modern restaurant experience, bringing forward an atmosphere as unique as...

Full Story »
Mar 5 9:57 AM, General News




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