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Frictionless Foodservice at The Fresh Market

Smaller format store hopes to attract shoppers short on time
Photograph courtesy of The Fresh Market

When deciding where to purchase prepared foods at retail, the overwhelming majority of consumers (86%) seek convenience and the “ability to get in and out of the store in an appropriate amount of time,” finds Technomic, WGB’s sister research firm.

The need for speed is something that The Fresh Market of Greensboro, N.C., is hoping will entice shoppers as much as its prepared foods meal deals for the whole family.

“Compared to a typical supermarket that is over 40,000 square feet, the average size of The Fresh Market stores ranges between 18,000 to 23,000 square feet, making it easier and faster to shop in,” said the company in a statement.

Technomic asked about 2,500 shoppers 18 and olderto rate the importance of various attributes when purchasing prepared foods at retailers. In addition to a convenient location (86%) and convenient store operating hours (86%), 86% of consumers also seek a store with aisles that are easy to navigate.

“Another reason The Fresh Market differentiates itself is the shopping atmosphere,” said the company. “There is no need for shopping cart bumper cars in jam-packed aisles. There is soft lighting, inviting music and helpful team members.

The Fresh Market said it is further differentiating its foodservice operations with meal deals reminiscent of successful fast casual and health-focused fast-food restaurants.

Every Sunday and Tuesday, The Fresh Market offers a Roasted Chicken Dinner for $12.99.The roasted-in-store whole chicken comes with a choice of two side dishes from the deli (such as Brussels sprouts or mac and cheese) and sweet corn muffins. On Thursdays, roasted chickens are $5 each.

For shoppers looking for an easy-to-prepare meal, The Fresh Market features $20 Little Big Meals, which vary every week. The meals, which are designed to feed a family of four in 20 minutes, come with a choice of protein, vegetable sides and accompaniments, such as sauce, bread or dessert.

The Fresh Market Bistro Meals are ready to go. Starting at $8.99, the Bistro Meals include an entree paired with two sides. Entrees include favorites such as meatloaf, chicken breasts, chicken salad, paninis, pasta, salads and more.

According to Technomic, other key factors influencing where consumers shop for prepared foods at retail include a clean store interior (91%), food quality (89%), taste and flavor of the food (89%), variety of items (85%), friendly service (83%), knowledgeable staff (82%) and a pleasant atmosphere and ambiance (82%).

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