ARLINGTON, VA – Food Marketing Institute (FMI) today announces a comprehensive agenda to evaluate the power of fresh foods through in-depth consumer research. The organization’s commitment to investing in intellectual property on the most popular segments of the grocery store – meat, produce and foodservice – widens in 2019 to include new shopper perspectives related to seafood and bakery. 

FMI Vice President, Fresh Foods, Rick Stein commented on the initiatives, saying, “Food retailers make their mark in the fresh perimeter, capturing consumers’ attention and gaining their trust and loyalty, and the fresh foods segments will only continue to garner substantive space allocations in retail in the next two years. In fact, 89 percent of companies surveyed in our annual operations research expect to increase space for deli/fresh prepared grab-and-go selections, 68 percent for fresh produce, and 67 percent for deli/fresh prepared self-serve bars/buffets.”

“It’s imperative that we help our members navigate shoppers’ buying habits in context of these complex categories that are influenced by factors such as volatile markets and limited shelf life,” Stein said. “In addition to research and insights, we’ll convene broader industry discussions at the second-annual FreshForward event, reviewing the global food supply, food waste, foodservice at retail and the evolving consumer.”

Analyses will offer consumer insights on areas of the perimeter; reports and related assets include: 

1. The Power of Meat 
  • Provides an annual update of shopper habits regarding meat and poultry pre-trip, in-store and at home. Shares how consumer preferences and buying patterns have shifted in the past decade, while addressing hot new trends affecting the meat department.
  • Released at the Annual Meat Conference, March 3
  • Webinar slated for March 14
  • Partner: North American Meat Institute 
2. The Power of Produce
  • Identifies the biggest trends in consumer purchasing and consumption of fruit and vegetables that are crucial to optimizing sales and profits.
  • Presented at Southeastern Produce Council event, March 8
  • Webinar slated for March 21 
3. The Power of Seafood
  • Provides consumer insights on why they buy and why they don’t buy seafood at retail. Couples this consumer research with data from Nielsen and IRI to provide a robust view of the consumer in terms of their wants and desires about seafood at retail.
  • Presented at the Seafood Expo North America, March 19

4. The Power of Bakery
  • The first-annual study aims to bring an understanding of consumer perceptions, attitudes and behaviors regarding the bakery category in a grocery retail setting to help the industry optimize marketing, merchandising and branding decisions.
  • Presented at the American Bakers Association Convention, April 8
  • Webinar slated for April 17
  • Later presented at International Baking Industry Exposition on Sept. 10
  • Partner: American Bakers Association 

5. Power of Foodservice at Retail 2019
  • Documents the biggest trends in consumer purchasing and consumption of deli/fresh prepared foodservice items at retail, its opportunity, image, store destination and above all, the ways in which stores can meet, and exceed, consumer expectations in this space.
  • September 13 release
6. Top Trends in Fresh 
  • Unfolding as a webinar series with IRI, the analysis provides a perspective on what is motivating the consumer and how retailers are positioning their fresh perimeter.
  • New webinar series kicks off in April 2019
For the latest information related to the association’s fresh activities, visit