Spring is finally here, and Easter is at the gates. With March in full swing and Christmas already a distant memory, many of us are already longing for the next seasonal break. Easter is in fact the next bank holiday we can look forward to, especially because this year it will fall quite late in the year, meaning that the chances of experiencing a warm and sunny holiday are higher. The Christian festival has two bank holidays, Good Friday and Easter Monday, which will take place on April the 19th and on the 22nd, so people will get to enjoy a full four-day weekend.
Apart from coloured eggs and cute bunnies, Easter’s tradition is of course known to be celebrated with lots of tasty food. People gathering around large tables with friends and family to enjoy a hearty meal over the course of many hours is a common experience during the Easter season. But where will all that food come from and where will it be consumed? This is a question, we at Wrapp are interested in and we believe all actors in the food industry such as restaurants and grocery-stores should be as well.
Easter may represent a great business opportunity when in possession of the right knowledge and understanding of current consumption trends. We have been digging in our data to find the answers that can enable you to anticipate the next Easter trend and reap its fruits.
In our previous blog post we talked about how Swedes are traveling less this year, in part likely due to a heightened sense of responsibility of curbing carbon emissions in the atmosphere. We saw how the data showed a sharp decrease of both transactions and money spent on flight tickets during the last year and in the beginning of 2019. This probably means that more Swedes have not booked an escape-journey to far-off warmer destinations and decided to remain in Sweden for the next Easter holiday. Consumers could be planning to enjoy their Easter lunches in their home or maybe out in the country-side if those days will grant some pleasant spring-like weather. This will translate in more consumers grocery-shopping to prepare their favourite Easter-dishes but also more customers for the restaurants that will remain open during the holiday season.
But what will Swedes want to eat this year? Another interesting trend that has been known for quite some time now has been the increase of appetite for ecological-produce. 2017 has seen a boom of consumption of eco-friendly products. According to Ekoweb’s latest reports on Swedish consumption, sales of organic food have increased by 18 percent in 2016, by 9,8 percent in 2017 and by 4 percent in 2018 , , . In total, organic food was sold for SEK 28.8 billion in 2017 . This is an increase in value of SEK 1.1 billion compared to 2017. Swedes are more and more choosing organic food and the eco-trend has deepened also in 2018. There has been talk of a stagnation in the eco-market, certainly the rate of increase is lower in 2018, but there have been large volumes that have been sold nonetheless during the year .
At Wrapp we have been looking at some of our own data to spot the trend and selected a few retailers in the Stockholm region that sell ecological food. Our numbers do confirm the presence of the described progression. Paradiset, Stockholm’s biggest chain of solely organic food-stores, has increased its sales with 73% only in 2017. The same for Cajsa Warg whose business exploded with a 69% increase the same year. Even Årstiderna, an online organic food-store, has seen its sales rise right through 2018. However, we can see that 2018 has not seen increases in sales for all selected merchants. This is probably due to many new retailers that entered the market during 2017 and 2018 to take advantage of the eco-wave which in turn increased competition.
We believe that climate-anxiety has a lot to do with the current eco-trend. People seem to perceive ecological food to be better for the planet and to have a lower carbon footprint. This is of course truer when the produce is local and not imported. We can confirm the presence of such development, when we also consider that the consumption of meat, which is known for being one of the biggest contributors to carbon emissions, has decreased during the same years the eco-food industry boomed whilst the demand for locally-produced meat has increased .
We looked at a selection of well-known vegetarian/vegan restaurants in Stockholm to confirm this trend. Indeed, our numbers did support our thesis that Swedes are having a strong desire to feel like responsible consumers. 2017 has been a very good year for vegetarian restaurants with increases in sales that on average went above 50%. 2018 Has also seen some good results showing that the trend is not over yet.
Therefore, we believe that since Swedes are preferring to stay at home during Easter and that the demand of organic and even vegan food is ever-increasing, there is a strong opportunity for those merchants that keep a close eye on these trends and that anticipate competition by correctly targeting and engaging the right audience with relevant marketing, such as offers, before and during the Easter season.
Wrapp helps businesses understand the market they operate in through its accurate purchasing-data that provides a considerable amount of valuable insights which can make a big difference in sales and revenue. Transaction-driven-marketing (TDM) coupled with advanced Analytics are bound to be the future of retail as this system literally revolutionizes how marketers understand their market and its trends but also their own customers’ buying behaviour. Please read our previous blog posts on #TDM and Analytics to learn more.
 "Ekologisk livsmedelsmarknad". Ekoweb. 26 januari 2017. Retrieved: 2019-03-13.
 "Ekologisk livsmedelsmarknad". Ekoweb. 25 januari 2018. Retrieved: 2019-03-13.
 "Ekologisk livsmedelsmarknad". Ekoweb. 31 januari 2019. Retrieved: 2019-03-13.
 "Svenskarna äter mindre kött men väljer mer svenskt". Livsmedel i fokus. 4 September 2018. Retrieved: 2019-03-13.