Commissaries Grow In Popularity

Commissaries account for a quarter of all supermarket and convenience store prepared food purchases, according to Technomic.

In a first-of-its-kind study, Technomic found that commissaries (also known as meal assemblers and central kitchens) are the source of a large percentage of all foodservice purchases in both supermarkets and c-stores.

Commissaries have recently become more popular and required as these growing channels look to increase their overall foodservice sales and to meet consumer demand for fresh, prepared foods.

“Commissaries are a great option for c-stores and supermarkets largely because they can outsource the food preparation function to someone else,” said Tim Powell, a director of research and consulting at Technomic. “As these channels have explored new avenues of growth, foodservice has shown that margins can sometimes be three times as high as other in-store categories.”

In recent years, supermarkets and c-stores have looked to foodservice for expansion and have been growing faster than the overall foodservice industry rate, making them attractive targets for suppliers to the industry.

Other pertinent findings include:

• Technomic identified four primary models of commissaries that will be critical for trading partners to understand.

• Commissary growth over the next three years will exceed both c-store and supermarket growth.

•  Cold deli sandwiches, burritos and pizza account for the largest shipments from commissaries to c-stores.

•  The largest volume categories going to supermarkets are fully-cooked meats, prepared salads, pizza and cold deli sandwiches.

As part of this research, Technomic developed a framework for suppliers to determine the best way to select and identify commissaries relevant to a trading partner’s business. The study also focuses on supermarket and c-store operator opinions as well as commissary attitudes and needs from suppliers.

SOURCE: Technomic Inc.

 

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