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May 22, 2024

Prices Fall for Super Bowl Party Essentials

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Feb 1, 2024

As the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs prepare to face off in Super Bowl LVIII on Sunday, hosts planning watch parties are getting a break on many popular party foods compared to last year.

Cost of Wings, Veggies Down from 2023

According to new data from Wells Fargo, prices for chicken wings, vegetables, and other Super Bowl party staples have fallen nearly 5% on average from last year. This reverses a long trend of increasing food costs around the big game.

The cost of a pound of chicken wings, which surged in 2021 and 2022 due to factors like higher feed costs and supply chain issues, is down about 10 cents from last year. A new report shows wings selling for around $2.75 per pound currently at major grocery chains.

Prices of veggies like avocados, tomatoes, lettuce, and onions are also lower by 5-10% from 2023 levels thanks to improved growing conditions in Mexico and California over the past year. For example, Hass avocados that sold for $2 each around the 2023 Super Bowl can now be found on sale for as low as $1.50 in many stores.

Food Item 2023 Price 2024 Price % Change
Chicken Wings (per lb) $2.85 $2.75 -3.5%
Hass Avocados $2.00 $1.50 -25%
Roma Tomatoes (per lb) $3.99 $3.49 -13%

This relief on prices couldn’t come at a better time, as 61% of consumers still plan to host or attend a Super Bowl party despite higher costs of living. Shoppers are estimated to spend over $85 per person on food and drink for the big game.

How Grocers Are Preparing

With over 208 million Americans expected to tune into the Super Bowl, grocery chains are stocking up on party essentials at their distribution centers and stores.

Kroger, the nation’s largest supermarket operator, shared data this week showing 10x higher sales of chicken wings, a 6x increase in veggie platter purchases, and 4x more deli sandwich orders compared to a typical week. They also expect to sell enough guacamole this weekend to fill nearly 300 football fields 1-foot deep.

Regional chains like Hy-Vee are offering BOGO deals on beer, soda, chips, and prepared foods to capture share of spend. Independent stores and convenience chains also stand to gain, with 30% of game watchers still needing to buy food and alcohol on game day.

To manage varying demand across neighborhoods, chains like Wegmans and Publix use analytics to optimize labor and inventory levels store by store. By linking point-of-sale systems with foot traffic data, grocers can pinpoint the best times to schedule extra cashiers.

“Super Bowl Sunday has become an increasingly important sales driver…it allows us to highlight in-store services like catering, custom cakes, and prepared foods that keep customers coming back year-round,” said Nathaniel Smith, Publix VP of Marketing.

Predictions for Big Game Snacking

While prices are down overall, what food trends will emerge during Super Bowl watch parties this weekend?

According to market research firm The NPD Group, plant-based alternatives will see a surge in popularity. Sales of foods like vegan burgers, almond milk, oat milk, and coconut yogurt are expected to jump 15-20% as more Americans seek healthier and sustainable options.

“Now that brands like Impossible Foods and Oatly have achieved mainstream appeal, these products make easy substitutes for the usual cheese, dairy, and meat-centric dishes served on Super Bowl Sunday,” said Claire Stafford, Food Industry Analyst at TrendHunter.

The “grazing table” trend also shows no signs of slowing down, with Instagram-worthy spreads of charcuterie meats, cheeses, crackers, fruits and nuts. Nearly 40% of hosts under age 40 plan to incorporate a grazing table this year.

Meanwhile, snacks in variety packs will fuel families and friend groups that have diverse tastes. Popular options include 30-packs of mini bagels, trays of slider sandwiches, and assorted bite-sized pizzas.

“We’re seeing parents move away from giant chip bowls in favor of ‘snack stadiums’ with lots of flavors and textures to satisfy both kids and adults,” Stafford added.

No matter the preferred flavors, with more reasonable prices in 2024, Super Bowl party spreads will impress guests without breaking the bank for hosts.

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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