American consumers are starting to slow down their grocery spending, data shows. As the new round of federal unemployment stimulus has been delayed, shoppers have gone back to their early Spring spending habits, when overall grocery sales had plunged before briefly recovering from May to July.
The surge in demand for certain grocery items is starting to level off, leaving food brands and retailers scrambling to keep their customers. Because shoppers are looking for value over brand loyalty, food producers and grocers announced they are working on bringing back deals and discounts that had largely been revoked during the pandemic.
Food producers had a hard time keeping up with consumer demand in previous months and offering deals that would cut into their margins wasn’t part of the strategy. However, most grocery items that were in high demand are now steadily in stock and moving off the shelves at a slower pace, prompting companies to rethink their deals.
According to The Wall Street Journal, sales of soups, frozen dinners, cereals, and coffee, although still higher than last year, are slowing down significantly compared to July and previous pandemic months. The waning spending habits are most apparent in states with high unemployment rates, like Nevada, Illinois, and New York.
While discounts at grocery stores have been a rare sight since March, due to the fact that retailers didn’t need to fight for customers, the quick shift in spending habits is paving a way for their return. Most retailers are starting to offer bulk deals again, as well as more competitive loyalty programs aimed at helping customers save money.
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