By: Ash O’Mahony
Don’t mess with the meal deal formula. That’s the unwritten rule of food to go. Sainsbury’s serves as a cautionary tale for anyone who dares to think otherwise. The backlash from its revamped meal deal in 2016 – which saw its much-loved Taste the Difference sandwiches removed from the £3 bundle – has achieved near-legendary status. . . .
. . . Weather analytics platform Planalytics says that effect is just as evident outside of the summer months. “This year the UK recorded its second-warmest February on record, with long spells of dry weather,” says VP of marketing David Frieberg. “That increased food to-go footfall, as people were drawn out of homes and workplaces for a taste of spring .”
Conversely, the wet weather in October put a dampener on sales . “Although the month started on the warm side, by the end it was the coolest October since 2012 and wettest since 2013,” Frieberg says. “Footfall levels in stores fell by mid-month as the temperatures dropped and rainfall increased.” That weather drove wrap sales down 10%, salads down 5% and sandwiches down 3%.
So perhaps hot food is just what’s needed to heat up the food-to-go market. So long as it doesn’t mess with the sacred territory of the lunchtime meal deal.