During the peak of the pandemic, C&G stores were used by many as an alternative to shopping FMCG in traditional grocery stores., but as pandemic numbers decrease, so too does the incidence of C&G shoppers.
In April, 78% of adult Canadians were shopping FMCG in C&G stores. During this month, the incidence was higher among shoppers from younger generations (86% among Gen Z, 83% among Millennials).
In June, as COVID-19 restrictions eased, the percentage dropped to 70%. The share of younger Canadians shopping in C&G dropped to 72% among Gen Z and 78% among Millennials.
In general, during the past 3 months, shoppers’ price sensitivity has increased. However, this is less of a concern for regular C&G shoppers who are willing to pay more given C&G stores’ location and ease of shopping. Amongst those not shopping in C&G stores, higher prices and the perception that C&G stores are not as clean or safe as traditional grocery stores are among the top barriers.
During April and May, the items most purchased in C&G stores were food essentials, such as bread and milk. In the past month, purchases of these items have decreased significantly.
As summer unveils and pandemic numbers remain stable, products within the categories of RTD/cold drinks, confectionery, snacks in general, and lottery, rise to the top as the items most purchased.