Welcome to Food Week November 28 – December 4, 2022. Everything is confusing. Inflation is better but jobs keep growing. Commodity prices are down but groceries are still high. Alt-proteins have very loyal customers but the category isn’t growing. Then there’s soup train. And Costco (Costco?) missed its projections.
Railway strike averted. No one is happy.
Fun and then disappointment at the World Cup.
RETAIL AND CONSUMER
Will Kroger enter the dollar store space?
Food commodity prices continue to fall but groceries stay high. Energy and operational costs said to be key factors but the lack of competition in m any, especially protein, industries is likely driver as well.
To quote REM, everybody hurts, sometime. Costco misses numbers, stock price slides.
Animal protein product sales appear to have plateaued but their core consumer is solid.
Berries appear to have zero price elasticity. Consumer will be regardless of price.
RESTAURANTS AND FOODSERVICE
Lower chicken breast costs are driving menu development in chains.
Fast food is less and less a restaurant-like experience. Even McDonalds preparing for this eventuality. Relatedly, delivered fast food is often 100% more expensive than at the restaurant. No wonder why this business model looks appealing.
KFC owns Christmas in Japan.
FOOD SUPPLY CHAIN
Mexico is going to ban GMO corn by 2024. US farmers are not happy.
There is a mysterious kidney disease that has killed thousands of agricultural workers. Likely cause is pesticides but there is no proof yet.
The new range wars are over water usage. This time it is farmers and ranchers versus 40 million people.
The fight over crab, lobster and right whales spills over to Whole Foods.
Eating healthy and health for the planet are inextricable.
FOOD WEEK LAGNIAPPE NOVEMBER 28
The ramen express: train in Japan runs on leftover tonkotsu broth.
Gifts for the food obsessed.
Your Xmas cocktails. Plenty of time to practice.
The guy who claimed his incredible physique was due to eating bull testicles. It turns out he was using performance enhancing drugs. That is more credible.
Wild coffee in danger of going extinct, which is worse than it sounds. Having a diverse set of variations means new flavors and characteristics but also an insurance policy against climate change or diseases.