Progressive Grocer

JAN 2017

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 27 of 117

Prepared Foods: A Fresh Conversation A unique experiment follows four busy families down their paths to the dinner table, uncovering failings and opportunities in the world of prepared foods. Mike Gebien and his daughter Miranda choose prepared ribs for their main dinner entrée on day t wo of the Prepared Foods Challenge. A D V E R T O R I A L In part one of a three- par t series covering Tyson Foods' Prepared Foods Challenge, four Chicagoland families set out to explore prepared foods like never before. P repared foods—they should sell themselves right? Consum- ers are busier than ever. Studies point to increased demand for fresh, healthier fare. Growth in away-from-home spending continues. What's the problem? Research from Springdale, Ark.-based Tyson Foods has sug- gested that today's deli is "broken," from out of stock SKUs at peak mealtimes, to dry, overcooked products, to poor custom- er service. A recent examination of the 25 top retailers in the country proved disappointing. "In every one of those 25, in every last one of them, the deli shopper's satisfaction with the deli experience ranked signifi- cantly below their satisfaction with the total store experience," said Eric Le Blanc, director of marketing for Tyson Foods. "We also checked on where deli ranks when people are making their decisions about what they want for dinner that night, and the answer was: we don't rank. We're not even on the map." What does that mean for today's groceries? What can retailers do to change consumers' perceptions of the deli to boost busi- ness and store loyalty? Not surprisingly, the answer begins and ends with the consumer experience. The Prepared Foods Challenge Inspired by the consequences of failure in the deli and pre- pared foods departments, Joe Khirallah, chief executive offi- cer of Redwood City, Calif.-based marketing firm Green Bear Group, approached Tyson Foods with an interesting consum- er-centric idea. Recruit four willing families with children and active lives and ask them to exclusively use prepared foods to assemble seven consecutive family dinners. "The idea was to give people an opportunity to do something they already do from time to time, force them to do it all the time and see how they respond," said Khirallah. "Then we would give them some help. Let them learn, take the help away and see what sticks." What followed was a decidedly open dialogue about the pre- pared foods experience. A Tough First Few Days Days one through three of Tyson Foods' Prepared Foods Chal- lenge required the Keeley, Ramirez, Schnurr and Gebien fami- lies—all from the greater Chicagoland area—to independently source their dinners from the prepared foods departments of their local supermarkets. No recommendations or assistance of any kind was provided. Each of the families began the experiment with eagerness, optimism and distinct goals ranging from learning new ways to prepare more diverse, healthy foods that would simplify their T Y SO N F OO DS ' P R E PA R E D F OO DS C H A L L E N G E PA RT O N E PREPARED FOODS INSIGHTS

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Progressive Grocer - JAN 2017