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Urner Barry
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Toms River, NJ 08754
1-732-240-5330

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Bill Lynskey
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janice@urnerbarry.com


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Amanda Buckle
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1001 Corporate Circle
Toms River, NJ 08755
Voice: 732-575-1983
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@urnerbarry.com


Ryan Doyle
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@urnerbarry.com


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SeafoodNews.com
Voice: 541-297-2875
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@urnerbarry.com


Peggy Parker
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PO Box 872
Deming, WA 98244
Voice: 360-592-3116
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@urnerbarry.com


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8 White Pine Lane
Lexington, MA 02421
Voice: 781-861-1441
 Fax 781-533-9480
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This Week in Retail: Farewell February; What's Next?

Wrapping up the final full week of February, wintry weather is in full force as back-to-back storms rip through the Eastern two-thirds of the country. Amidst the havoc, retailers are eagerly looking towards spring demand, which is boosted by seasonal influences including more favorable grilling conditions and holidays like Easter.

Retail protein sales are typically sluggish in February, leaving much to be desired among grocers. However, consumer retail demand for meat has remained strong so far this year despite a normal seasonal lull and higher prices for most items. In the near term, grocers will begin to shift their retail features from red meat and poultry towards seafood as Lenten observers begin a 40-day period of fasting and reduced meat consumption starting on March 2nd.

The seafood complex accounts for 27% of total protein features this week. Beef makes up 26.5% of feature volume, while pork closes in on 21%. Chicken claims almost 13% of ad space, followed by eggs...

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This Week in Retail: Wintry Weather Boosts Protein Sales

While major buying occasions are sparse in January, wintry weather helps support sales at the meat case this month as consumers stock up on protein for hearty, comfort food recipes.  At present, the National Weather Service is calling for significant winter weather in the Southern and Eastern U.S.

Buying opportunities for seafood and beef have dominated the protein complex so far this year. Seafood narrowly beats out beef for first in buying opportunities this week, claiming 28% of total ad volume. Beef accounts for 26%. 

Retail feature prices for most beef roast cuts—popular with cold-weather cooking—are higher than year-ago levels. Bottom round averages $4.98 per pound, a 15% YoY increase. 80% lean ground beef is up $1.04 per pound, or 37.4%, from last year at $3.82 per pound on average.  

Pork makes up 24% of total ad volume this week. Hams are featured at competitive price points since retailers are looking to clear out excess inventory after the holidays...

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Norway Breaks Volume, Value Records for Seafood Exports in 2021

The Norwegian Seafood Council said 2021 was the best year ever for Norway’s seafood exports. The country hit both export volume and value records during the year, reaching 3.1 million metric tons worth NOK 120.8 billion (US$13.6 billion).

"2021 was another exciting export year for Norwegian seafood. We are in the very favourable position of having products in high demand the world over - even in times of crisis,” said Renate Larsen, CEO of the Norwegian Seafood Council. “This has resulted in a growth in demand, record export volumes...

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This Week in Retail: Inflation Climbs to 39-Year High in Latest CPI Data

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released the latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) for November, showing the all items index up 6.8 percent over the past 12 months. This was the fastest 12-month increase since June 1982.

The food index increased 0.7 percent last month after rising 0.9 percent in both September and October. The index for food away from home rose 0.6 percent in November after gaining 0.8 percent in October, according to the BLS. Over the last year, the food away from home index has risen 5.8 percent. This was the largest yearly increase dating back to January 1982...

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This Week in Retail: Spread Between Food at Home vs Away from Home Narrows

The latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) for September, released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), showed the food index up 0.9 percent last month after gaining 0.4 percent in August. The Food at Home (FAH) index showed a 1.2 percent over the month increase with gains across all six major food group indices. The index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs demonstrated a 2.2 percent over the month increase. The index for dairy and related products posted the smallest increase at 0.7 percent. 

The BLS defines the CPI as the change in prices paid by consumers for goods and services. Overall, the CPI rose by 0.4 percent in September. Notably, gains in the indices for food and shelter contributed to more than half of the monthly all items increase. Over the last 12 months, the all items index rose 5.4 percent before seasonal adjustment. 

The BLS reports that the index for Food Away From Home (FAFH), which was up 0.4 percent in August, gained 0.5 percent in September. Over the last year, the FAFH index rose 4.7 percent. Increases for limited and full-service meals offset a decline in the index for food at employee sites and schools...

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This Week in Retail: Heat Lingers, but Grocers Look Towards Fall Demand

Heat continues to blanket much of the country in mid-September. Meanwhile, hurricane season is wreaking havoc along the eastern U.S. and Gulf Coast, with tropical storm Daniel being the latest system to rear its ugly head.

With some communities still reeling from the devasting damage of Hurricane Ida and others flooded by torrential rainfall from Nicholas, late-summer grilling plans are far removed from the priority list for many households. 

Meanwhile, the first day of fall is just under one week away. For retailers, the transition to autumn will mean increased consumer preference for fall favorites like roasts. Weather-permitting, tail gaiting at sports events as fans celebrate NFL season could prolong demand for grilling cuts while supporting popular game-time foods like wings.

Speaking of wing fanatics, the National Chicken Council recognizes September as National Chicken Month. Some grocers are advertising additional chicken cuts to encourage consumer spending on poultry. However, the number of chicken advertisements this week in Urner Barry’s survey was down from a week ago and was also below the last half of August...

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This Week in Retail: Eyeing Prop 12, Pandemic Uncertainty in 2022

Rounding out the first week of 2022, uncertainty surrounding the ongoing pandemic continues to impact businesses and the overall wellbeing of the world’s population.

Retailers, along with other participants throughout the supply chain, are monitoring labor constraints, made worse by the rapid spread of the Omicron variant. Prolonged disruptions to the production, further processing, and distribution of consumer goods from worker absenteeism and potential further government restrictions remain key concerns for producers and buyers alike in the New Year.

Meanwhile, the second phase of California’s Proposition 12 went into effect on January 1. Under the law, veal calf producers are required to provide their animals with at least 43 square feet of usable floor space per calf. Sows must have a minimum of 24 square feet of usable space per animal. Laying hens are required to be cage-free. Proposition 12 prohibits the sale in California of veal, pork, and eggs not raised in compliance with these...

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This Week in Retail: Seafood Features Are Ablaze Amid the Holidays

With Christmas at our doorstep, some households are stocking up on last-minute gifts, along with food for those hosting holiday meals.

Just ahead of the holiday, seafood climbed to the top spot among protein ads this week with 29.5 percent. Beef comes in second with 25.9 percent of total protein ad volume, followed by pork with 21.6 percent. Chicken makes up 4.7 percent, compared to 5.7 percent the previous week. Turkey features increased to 16.8 percent, up from 12.2 percent last week...

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This Week in Retail: Buying Opportunities Increase for Pork

Meat and poultry features are bountiful this week as consumers hunker down for hearty home-cooked meals during chilly autumn evenings. While Halloween is just around the corner, some retailers are already showcasing Thanksgiving promotions.

This week in retail, buying opportunities were lower week-over-week for turkey and seafood features. Towards the tail-end of October National Pork Month, marketing campaigns pushed pork features higher than the previous week. Meanwhile, retail activity for chicken and beef was nearly flat with the week prior. 

Buying opportunities for seafood this week are centered around fresh/frozen fillets—namely tilapia—and raw shrimp. The fresh/frozen fillets complex makes up 33% of ad space and averages $6.89 per pound, 20.1% above a year ago. Tilapia is up 7.8% from this week last year at $5.93 per pound on average. Atlantic salmon boneless filet is also widely featured and averages $8.68 per pound, compared to $7.70 per pound last year. The raw shrimp complex claims 23% of ad space. The regional price spread for 16-20 raw ranges from $6.99 per pound to $8.99 per pound, generally on par with year-ago levels...

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This Week in Retail: Looking Ahead to October

Don’t blink—it’s nearly October. Corn and soybean harvests are underway, sweater weather is approaching, and grocers are seeing additional opportunities to promote protein sales. Pork and seafood are receiving special accolades next month, as October is recognized as National Pork and Seafood Month.

Both campaigns are aimed at supporting farmers and encouraging household consumption by showcasing creative ways to incorporate pork and seafood into mealtimes. Whether it's for back-to-school lunches or family-time dinners, there are no shortages of pork and seafood-centric recipes to celebrate October and fall time festivities. 

Traditionally, hogs were marketed in October. These days, specialized facilities allow for year-round production. While every...

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