Comments from senior execs during August conference calls with securities analysts.
“Food comps in the U.S. were up mid-teens for the (second quarter), with units in food slightly negative and about flat exiting the quarter even with double-digit inflation… We had our U.S. store manager meeting last week and amongst other topics, we shared examples of items where we are holding prices down or rolling them back. Those tend to be opening price point, private brand, food and consumables items. We want to help families put meals on the table with Great Value and our other private brands to relieve the pressure they are feeling… We are seeing more middle- and higher-income shoppers choose us.” — Doug McMillon, CEO, Walmart
“As the year has progressed, we have seen more pronounced consumer shifts and trade-down activity. As an example, instead of deli meats at higher price points, customers are increasing purchases of hot dogs as well as canned tuna or chicken. Private brand penetration has also inflected higher. And in food category, specifically the private brand growth rate doubled compared to Q1 levels. We will continue to manage pricing for customers in a way that preserves our price gaps and allows us to earn market share profitably.” — John David Rainey, exec vp, CFO, Walmart.
“Based on the broad appeal of our value proposition and the portability of our new store model, we believe that the greater Mid-Atlantic market represents roughly 250 store opportunity on our way towards our long-term target of approximately 4,800 stores nationally. We remain focused on adding 28 net new stores across all of our markets this year and expect to resume 10% unit growth as we move into 2023.”
— Eric Lindberg, CEO, Grocery Outlet.
“Our food and beverage category has grown more than 50%, or $1.8 billion, since the second quarter of 2019… Our Good & Gather brand now is a $2 billion brand that continues to see very strong growth.”
— Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO, Target.
“Food and beverage led the way in the quarter with growth in the low double-digits reflecting broad strength across multiple subcategories… During inflationary times like these, we heavily focused on unit share, specifically to better understand our relevance as compared to our competitive set, given that growth in both traffic and units is a strong proxy for the guests’ overall engagement.”
— Christina Hennington, chief growth officer, Target.
“We announced a $140 million targeted investment for New York City stores over the next two years. This investment is focused on improving store layout and product presentation to showcase our assortment in a more compelling way that really embraces the diversity of the neighborhoods and communities Stop & Shop serves in the greater New York City area.”
— Natalie Knight, CFO, Koninklijke Ahold Delhaize N.V.
“Our Dogsters brand continues to see strong profitable growth as we expand the brand to key retailers. Our marketing team is focused on strengthening the brand’s positioning and will launch an entirely new campaign in 2023, celebrating the special relationship that dog lovers have with their dogs, and reminding them not to forget their best friend when shopping the novelty aisle.”
— Daniel Fachner – President & CEO, J&J Snack Foods.
“We already have more than 27,000 fridges in stores and retailer interest is growing, not shrinking.”
— Billy Cyr, CEO, Freshpet.
“While we are continuing to attract consumers to the frozen aisle, we have taken important steps to broaden our presence by introducing products that gain us entry into the refrigerated and ambient food spaces with the recent soft launches of our Oat Butter Bars and grain- and dairy-free tortilla chips.”
— Sam Galletti, president and CEO, Tattooed Chef.