This Week in Retail: Seasonal Transition for the Meat Case

With Labor Day now behind us, retailers are preparing for the transition from summer staples to fall favorites.

Tailgaiting items like burgers and ribs are being featured in time for the National Football League season, which kicks off today! This could support sales at the meat case as consumers gather to cheer on their teams while chowing down on finger foods.

A game-time staple, chicken wings are on feature for $2.97 per pound, down 2 cents from a year ago. Wholesale wing prices have gained nearly 7 percent so far this year but are currently well below last year’s record highs, providing the opportunity for retailers and foodservice to showcase attractive promotions. However, boneless breasts have mostly been at record highs so far this year—unwelcome news for boneless wing lovers.

Over in beef, 80% lean ground beef is featured at $3.82 per pound on average, up 15.1% from this time a year ago. Features this week run as high as $5.49 per pound in some regions. As the weather turns cooler in parts of the country, the roast category averages $6.18 per pound, up 18 cents from 2021 levels. In the meantime, some households continue to take advantage of favorable weather for outdoor cooking. The steak complex is running at an average of $9.12 per pound this week, up from $8.46 a year ago.

In the pork complex, ribs are 8 cents above year-ago levels at $3.22 per pound on average. Back ribs are 70 cents per pound lower than a year ago at this time, at $3.63 per pound. Pork shoulders average $1.99 per pound, nearly double the year-ago figure. Boneless center-cut pork chops average $3.74 per pound, 15.4% above year-ago levels. Brand label bacon has dipped below 2021 levels at $6.68 per pound on average.

Seafood features lead the charge with 33.8% of total protein ad volume this week. Beef follows closely with 32.8%, while pork comes in third with 20.8%. Chicken accounts for 9% of features, down from 13.1% the week prior.

To view this week's feature activity along with historical retail charts, subscribers can access the complete breakdown for the various meat and poultry cuts by clicking on the Retail Features option under the 'More' tab on the Comtell homepage or click here for Urner Barry's Weekly Summary.

Par: Courtney Shum (08/09/2022)

Source: Foodmarket newsletter (Urner Barry)