World Food aisle leaves good taste for shoppers
But almost a third of world food shoppers find it a confusing aisle to browse
Seven out of 10 shoppers who buy from the world foods aisle say they enjoy the experience, making it an even more popular part of the supermarket to browse than wine, which 56% claim to enjoy shopping for, or fresh fruit (53%) and fresh vegetables (51%).
According to the latest IGD ShopperVista data:
- Eight out of 10 (81% of) shoppers who buy world foods are interested in new products
- More than half (59%) would be interested in seeing an expanded choice of products available
- 60% would be prepared to pay more for higher-quality world food products
Joanne Denney-Finch, IGD chief executive, said: “Many of us are spending more time travelling abroad and there is a more varied choice of international food on our high streets than ever before. Coupled with that, we have seen increased migration to Britain over recent decades. So it’s no wonder that shoppers love to browse the world foods aisle, to recreate those tastes in their own homes. Over the last few years, we have seen enormous expansion of and investment into the world foods categories in most major supermarkets.
“We have also seen a change in the types of cuisine that people are looking for in the world foods aisle. Favourites such as Italian, Chinese and Indian remain popular, but Spanish, Greek and American products are also growing in popularity.
“Our research shows that the average world foods shopper has a distinctly different profile from other shoppers in the savoury ambient category, which also includes canned products, cooking sauces and breakfast cereals (see notes to editors). Some 60% of them are aged 18 to 34, versus 31% average for the whole category. This younger demographic might explain some of the enthusiasm we see for world foods and why exotic tastes are becoming so popular.”
Confusion in the aisles
Although enthusiasm is high for the category, almost a third (29%) of world food shoppers claim they can find it a confusing aisle to browse, with 15% planning to buy something when they enter the store but then not actually following through with the purchase.
Joanne Denney-Finch, IGD chief executive, said: “While shoppers’ enjoyment for world foods does translate into clear opportunities for retailers and suppliers, the aisle does seem to leave many shoppers feeling confused and this could be dampening growth in the category. Over a third (35%) of world food shoppers would actually be happy with a smaller range, suggesting many of them can find the wide choice daunting and the aisle tricky to navigate. Many of the brands can be unfamiliar and the aisles can often be laid out in a way that means shoppers find it hard to identify different cuisines.
“Retailers and suppliers need to ensure the aisle is well signposted and laid out in-store. Shoppers who purchase world foods are also more likely to buy products online than buyers in other savoury ambient categories, so that is also an area to showcase these products to their best advantage. As shoppers are willing to spend time browsing this category – whether in-store or online – it should be as seamless and enjoyable an experience for them as possible. This might also involve such tactics as meal solutions, recipe ideas and in-store theatre.”