There is little question that the ongoing recession has reshaped consumer habits. With more families eating more meals at home, such categories as breakfast foods have seen a resurgence in recent years.
And at the heart of it all is the ready-to-eat cereal category, which generates nearly 54% of sales of all breakfast foods. While a combination of discounting and tough year-over-year comparisons show the category down more than 2% from its peak at the beginning of the economic downturn, ready-to-eat cereal generated more than 12 shopping trips, according to mid-year 2010 data from the Nielsen Homescan consumer facts panel—that’s more than twice as many as any other breakfast food category. More than 92% of households made at least one ready-to-eat cereal purchase during that period, with the typical home spending $66.69.
With a rising awareness around healthier-for-you food products, many of these types of breakfast items are enticing consumer trial by marketing against a particular set of additional health claims. For example, sales of items making claims around flax or hemp seed were up 49.6% for the 52 weeks ended Sept. 4 across food, drug and mass outlets, including Walmart, according to Nielsen; sales of foods making antioxidant claims were up 26.6%, and sales of foods making fiber claims were up 5.3%.
|A/O frozen/refrigerated breakfast foods||1,263.6||7.1|
|Frozen waffles/pancakes/french toast||811.8||-7.4|
|Cereal (granola and natural types)||248.2||9.1|
|Instant breakfast (powdered)||106.1||2.6|