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July 7, 2020

Covid-19 – Breakfast on-the-go products under threat, research claims

'On-the-go' breakfast products could be "rendered irrelevant" by lifestyle changes introduced during the Covid-19 lockdown period, new research has claimed.

By Leonie Barrie

‘On-the-go’ breakfast products could be “rendered irrelevant” by lifestyle changes introduced during the Covid-19 lockdown period, new research has claimed.

London-headquartered data and analytics company GlobalData argues “the notion of convenience will take on new meaning at mealtimes as cocooning consumers re-evaluate their priorities” after months under lockdown.

GlobalData’s report – Covid-19 Case Study: New Mealtime Priorities – predicts that consumers will make “more conscious efforts to stay home and slow down their hectic lifestyles”.

Katrina Diamonon, principal analyst at GlobalData, said: “The demands of on-the-go lifestyles are less applicable today, which will diminish the appeal of items such as breakfast biscuits, drinkable yogurt, pouch packaging, and other products geared towards portability. 

“On the other hand, we’re likely to see hot breakfast ingredients, professional-grade coffee machines and baking mixes play a more prominent role in the breakfast occasion.”

The report notes that pre-Covid breakfasts in particular were characterised by the desire to pick something quick yet nourishing before rushing to get household members out the door. 

“However, self-isolating consumers have had the time to prepare and consume breakfast at home, which will significantly broaden breakfast choices,” it said.

The report emphasises that convenience is not obsolete, but rather it will manifest differently in this “new self-isolating reality”.

It suggests a focus on ease and efficiency will still define the lunch occasion but meal options will expand as homebound consumers enjoy access to a stove, oven, and well-stocked fridge.

Diamonon added: “Lunch choices will no longer be driven by individual preferences, but rather what the entire household will eat. Accordingly, single-serve portions and chilled snack packs will be replaced by family-size servings and even cooking kits that children can help with, as school closures and social distancing keep the entire family at home all day.”

The report suggests the challenge for brands will be to reposition convenience-oriented products to meet the needs of today’s “more anxious, isolated and value-conscious consumers”.

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