ARLINGTON, VA — April 15, 2009 — The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) will release its latest research on how the recession impacts consumer shopping at the supermarket and how that behavior affects retailer sales and operations at the FMI Future Connect conference in Dallas, TX.

FMI’s U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends 2009 and The Food Retailing Industry Speaks 2009, two of the retail food industry’s top reports on consumer trends and retailer insights, will be presented by FMI president and chief executive officer Leslie G. Sarasin, during a special session at Future Connect, The Food Retailing Industry Speaks, on Monday, May 4 at 1:15 p.m.

U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends 2009

Today’s consumer is enormously focused on price and value. The Trends 2009 report will provide insights into the extent this new thriftiness is impacting grocery shopping, trip frequency, and ultimately, spending. The survey covers money-saving measures in great depth including a wide range of measures both pre-trip and in the store. Do they purchase meal solutions as a replacement to eating out at restaurants? What do they think of private brand products? How important is it to purchase food from local sources?

     Many also fear the negative impact of the recession on health and wellness. Trends will address shoppers’ interest in products that promote good health and nutrition and the extent to which they are succeeding in eating healthfully.

     The food recalls of the past year have tested consumer confidence in the nation’s food supply. FMI research will show whether consumers think the food they buy in supermarkets and restaurants is safe and whom they trust to sell safe products. Those answers and more will be available in the latest Trends survey.

The Food Retailing Industry Speaks 2009

     The Speaks report will detail sales, same-store sales and profits for the retail food industry and feature an in-depth analysis of profit leaders. Speaks will provide retailer insights about private brands and the advertising changes they are making due to the recession.

     Speaks will look at the sustainability strategies retailers are putting in place and how they are incorporating health and wellness initiatives throughout the store.

Future Connect

    Future Connect, the first food industry conference devoted to developing industry leaders who will navigate the complex and challenging future, will be held May 4-6, 2009, in Dallas, TX. Retailers are sending managers and executives to hear the most up-to-date research from industry experts.

    Three educational tracks — operations, executive and senior executive — will bring peers together to focus on strategic planning, mentoring, managing diversity, team-building and maintaining work-life balance. The highly interactive format mixes strategically focused general sessions with hands-on, university-style case studies and work groups.

    After the conference, attendees will continue to build their leadership skills through ongoing educational opportunities leading up to additional leadership sessions at future FMI conventions and educational conferences.

    For more information on FMI’s Future Connect, visit

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Food Marketing Institute (FMI) conducts programs in public affairs, food safety, research, education and industry relations on behalf of its 1,500 member companies — food retailers and wholesalers — in the United States and around the world. FMI’s U.S. members operate approximately 26,000 retail food stores and 14,000 pharmacies. Their combined annual sales volume of $680 billion represents three-quarters of all retail food store sales in the United States. FMI’s retail membership is composed of large multi-store chains, regional firms and independent supermarkets. Its international membership includes 200 companies from more than 50 countries. FMI’s associate members include the supplier partners of its retail and wholesale members.