Canadian Pizza Magazine

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U.S. c-stores compete with quick-service for pizza dollars


May 15, 2015
By Canadian Pizza

May 15, 2015, Chicago – Lots of pizza dough went through the doors of U.S. convenience stores and lots of pizza servings went out the doors, according to research from The NPD Group.  

Cases of pizza crust and dough shipped to convenience stores from broadline foodservice distributors increased by 27 per cent and servings of pizza ordered by convenience store customers increased by over 20 per cent in the year ending February 2015 compared to year ago, NPD said in a news release.

Total dollars of pizza crust and dough cases shipped from broadline distributors to convenience stores increased by over 30 per cent, found NPD’s SupplyTrack, a monthly tracking service that tracks every product shipped from major broadline distributors to their foodservice operators. Complementing the increase in pizza crust and dough case shipments and dollars was a four per cent increase of pizza box case shipments to convenience stores in the year ending February compared to year ago.

The popularity of the pizza category at convenience stores is further evidence of the channel’s increasing focus on foodservice and its competitive threat to traditional quick-service restaurants, NPD said. The double-digit growth in pizza servings at convenience stores contrasts to flat servings at quick-service pizza restaurants and a one per cent increase at traditional quick-service restaurants, the research indicates.

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Convenience stores are also competing with traditional quick-service restaurants in terms of visits.  Foodservice visits at convenience stores increased by two per cent compared to a one per cent gain at traditional quick service restaurants for the year ending February 2015 compared to year ago. Foodservice at convenience stores is now the top category for in-store gross profit dollars and is number two for sales, according to NPD’s “Growing in a Fragmented Market” report.

“Convenience stores, particularly food forward convenience stores, are increasing their foodservice footprint and rapidly gaining share from traditional quick-service operators,” said Annie Roberts, vice-president, SupplyTrack. “Foodservice manufacturers and distributors should understand the dynamics that are currently at play between retail and traditional quick-service restaurants in order to fully serve the needs of the changing foodservice marketplace.”