TORONTO – Execulytics Consulting, a leading consulting firm for the fresh produce industry, has completed an in-depth report that highlights Canadian shopper preferences in a post-covid world. The study analyzes responses from 2,000 shoppers (1,000 vaccinated and 1,000 unvaccinated) to provide a broad scope of how the pandemic has shaped buying habits and purchasing preferences.
“55% of those surveyed, reported an increased likelihood to purchase local produce compared to before the pandemic,” said Mike Mauti, Managing Partner of Execulytics Consulting. “We also found vaccinated Canadians are 12% more likely to purchase local produce compared to unvaccinated.”
The study also found that the top positive attribute consumers identified when buying local produce was that the purchase is “good for farmers.”
Interestingly, the research indicates that the correlation with this attribute became stronger with older generations. Canadians aged 65 and older made this selection at a 56% higher rate than Canadians aged 18-34 years old.
Founded in 2016, Execulytics Consulting has specialized in analyzing real-world consumer, retail, and commodity data through the lens of the fresh produce buyer. The firm examines pricing, retail trends, and consumer preferences, and develops tools and solutions for the produce industry including the Produce Almanac, the Retailer 101 Seminar, consumer reports, and more.
With Mauti at the helm, Execulytics Consulting has been able to view data directly through the eyes of the produce retailer. Prior to starting Execulytics Consulting, Mauti spent 20 years in the fresh food industry, including 12 years in fresh produce with Loblaw Companies. His rich history and produce industry knowledge help him to identify patterns and trends in a more meaningful way for his clients.
One of the firm’s clients, Rouge River Farms, received custom commodity reports from Execulytics Consulting that isolated the data from consumers of their products. “As a corn and bean grower, understanding our potential customers on a deeper level helps us to shape our business for the future,” said Robert Reesor, President of Rouge River Farms.
Regarding organics, Execulytics Consulting found that outside of the highest income bracket of those surveyed, vaccinated Canadians said they are between 23%-43% more likely to pay a premium for organics (of 25% or more vs conventional) compared to their unvaccinated counterparts. The firm also discovered that generally, less than half of the respondents said they are willing to pay any kind of premium for organic produce.
To complement the national study, the Ontario Produce Marketing Association (OPMA) requested a custom analysis of the data from Execulytics Consulting, “This research tells us so much about our produce consumer,” said Michelle Broom, President of OPMA. “It is particularly interesting to see the lasting effects of the pandemic on shopping habits and how Ontario consumers differ from Canadians. Overall, this has been a great investment in our consumer research.”
With a close eye on the future shopper, Mauti and his team work to stay ahead. “This type of research can support multiple players along the supply chain as they plan for the changing landscape in the fresh produce industry. We are excited about the findings we’ve uncovered and look forward to our continued research and analysis,” said Mauti.
About Execulytics Consulting
Founded in 2016, Execulytics Consulting specializes in research and analytics related to the fresh produce industry. The firm examines real-world data through the lens of the retail produce buyer. Execulytics Consulting works with the entire supply chain—grower/shipper, importer, retailer, association—to offer tools and services that help the supply chain better understand consumer behaviors, produce trends, and market pricing. To learn more about Execulytics Consulting, visit www.execulytics.ca.