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What’s hot at Waitrose & Partners?

Waitrose & Partners’ sales of food storage are up by 21% per year, with larger pantry style containers up 6%. The figures are part of a myriad of information in the grocer’s new Food and Drink Report 2019-2020.

The report recognises the trend for de-cluttering and organising the kitchen, inspired by the ‘uncluttered home’ guru, Marie Kondo. Desire for less packaging is also apparent as 9% of consumers are now taking their own receptacles to supermarkets to fill with produce, according to Waitrose & Partners’ research.

Above: One of Waitrose’ range of food storage containers.
Above: One of Waitrose’ range of food storage containers.

Customers are also re-using bottles with a successful trial of BYO bottles for beer and wine refills at some Waitrose stores.

Meanwhile, the supermarket recognises that more consumers are making their own foodie gifts for Christmas, such as home-baked festive biscuits, and homemade liquors, jams and chutney. As a result Waitrose & Partners is providing more gift food recipe ideas.

The report states that more consumers are cooking to help others, with 44% cooking at home for guests, 33% to help out friends, 26% to take to work and 21% for charity bakes, fetes and fundraisers.

There is a rise in cooking simple meals with fewer ingredients, while Stephanie Chafor, head of grocery buying acknowledges: “There’s a trend for creating theatre from ordinary things: taking the time to make a proper cup of tea, or to enjoy a really great piece of chocolate cake.”

A positive sign for the housewares industry in general is an increased interest in sharing cookery skills. Sales of gift certificates at Waitrose & Partners’ Cookery School have risen by over a quarter, with more consumers’ valuing the enjoyment that cooking can bring.

Above: Waitrose & Partners’ Cookery School is seeing a rise in its courses being given as gifts.
Above: Waitrose & Partners’ Cookery School is seeing a rise in its courses being given as gifts.

An increase in mindful spending is evident with half of the consumers in Waitrose’s report buying fewer lunches out. Nearly half of consumers are buying fewer hot drinks while out, but more are treating themselves to one a week.

Above:  The popularity of celery and its juice is shown on the cover of the report from Waitrose & Partners.
Above:  The popularity of celery and its juice is shown on the cover of the report from Waitrose & Partners.

Increased sales of specific foods include noodles and grains – these will no doubt be boosting the popularity of bowls for housewares stockists. Ingredients for food on skewers are also among Waitrose & Partners’ hot sellers for 2019, with sales of metal skewers up by 9%.

Unsurprisingly, food trends include the rise in diets, but the report also recognises the arrival of ‘seaganism’ – a plant based diet combined with consumption of sustainable seafood.  It also predicts the rise of ‘seacuterie’ in 2020 with the pickling, smoking, fermentation or aging of seafood as alternatives to traditional meat charcuterie.

* Waitrose & Partners’ Food and Drink Report 2019-2020 uses research conducted via OnePoll, which involved 2,000 consumers, not exclusively Waitrose & Partner’s shoppers, as well as focus groups on shopping, cooking and eating habits. This was supported by sales data and insights from partners.

Top: Waitrose & Partners has published its insights into food and cooking related trends.

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