Consumer behaviour during COVID-19

grocery shoppingThe pandemic has altered Canada’s grocery retail landscape and, by extension, Canadian consumer behaviour.

According to research from Shopper Intelligence, a shopper and marketing research firm, consumers are more open-minded and impulsive than they were pre-COVID-19. Although many view trips to the grocery store as an in-and-out mission, some are starting to treat their grocery shopping as a chance to venture out of their homes. This has caused an increase in browsing, a willingness to try new products or different brands, and faster food consumption overall since the initial on-set of the pandemic.

Consumers are also searching online for new recipes and flavours now that they have newfound time in the kitchen. In fact, a simple Canadian depression-era peanut butter bread recipe went viral in April, emphasizing the creativity and resourcefulness of consumers during the pandemic. Moreover, Pinterest has reported that recipe searches, mostly for baked goods and comfort-foods, have soared over +1,000% in some countries. For peanut product manufacturers and producers, this may be the time to encourage consumers to try new recipes and different flavours of product lines.

It is not surprising that the pandemic has led to a significant rise in online grocery shopping. E-commerce for grocery is expected to outlast the pandemic and account for 37 per cent of all consumer purchases of goods and services, up 32 per cent. This is not true for the foodservice sector, which trails considerably behind e-commerce given health restrictions.

Sustainability and purpose in food companies are also becoming more important to consumers, who are looking less for brands’ “ethical credentials”, and more for producers to create social, environmental and economic value. Similarly, health and wellness in food products is becoming a major concern. Calories are set to become the focal point as more people balance increasingly sedentary lives with food intake.

Peanuts and peanut butter are well-positioned in the health and wellness sector – they are a naturally sustainable and economical, plant-based protein that fits perfectly into consumer desires for products that meet these criteria

Perfect peanutty summer recipe

'Peanuts and Pulses' Summer SaladPeanuts are a tasty fit for summer eating. This 'Peanuts and Pulses' Summer Salad recipe offers fresh, summer flavour that pairs perfectly with an at-home BBQ on a summer night.








Source: Shopper Intelligence, 2020. Data available through Canadian Grocer webinar with free sign-up.