In a recent study, Numerator conducted for the OPMA, consumers were seen to be cutting back on spending due to inflationary pressures. About half of the shoppers said they expected to cut back on restaurants, bars, and food delivery over the next three months, and about 20% said that they would cut back on fresh meat and produce.
Overall, price is a key driver in the decision to purchase produce (34%). However, consumers are not willing to sacrifice quality and freshness, with 26% indicating this is a primary factor, followed by health benefits at 22%.
Local fruits and vegetables continue to be top of mind for Ontario consumers and appear to be more resistant to inflation. 47% of those surveyed indicated that they purchase local “frequently” or “often,” and 42% said “occasionally.” Even with the looming threat of further inflationary pressures, 49% of consumers said that their local produce purchase intentions would remain “about the same.”
“It is great to see the support for local remain strong among Ontario shoppers, despite inflationary pressures,” said Stephen Reid, OPMA President. “We want to continue supporting consumers by providing them with the information they need to make the most of the local season.”
Almost 60% of consumers are concerned about price increases, specifically for fresh fruits and vegetables. This has resulted in 45% buying more produce when on sale and 42% shopping at more stores to get the best price. Out of the stores, Ontarians turn to for their fresh fruit and vegetable needs, conventional and discount continue to dominate trip choices. Club has also grown in importance, benefiting from growth in both unit and trips, specifically when shopping for vegetables.
Read more at theopma.ca