Discount retailers selling meat, poultry for less: study

by Meat&Poultry Staff
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WASHINGTON – Nontraditional discount food retailers had lower prices for 86% of the broad food groups, including meat and poultry, states a study titled “How Much Lower Are Prices at Discount Stores?” by USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS),

According to the Nov. 5 edition of the National Chicken Council’s Washington Report, key findings include meat items had the largest average price discounts in nontraditional stores, while grain-based products had the greatest variation in price differences between nontraditional and traditional stores and all canned products were priced significantly lower in nontraditional stores, even at the UPC level. Private-label items had larger price differences between store types than did national-brand goods.

Nielsen Homescan price data for 2004 to 2006 was used by ERS to conduct its analysis. Approximately 40,000 households in 52 markets were included in the study. For all fresh-frozen poultry, discount stores had an average price differential compared with traditional stores as follows (year and percent): 2004 was -12.0; 2005 was -11.1; and 2006 was -7.6. For random-weight chicken breast, a somewhat different situation was found (year and percent): 2004 was -5.5, 2005 was negative/insignificant; and 2006 was positive insignificant. For all canned poultry, the price differentials were much greater (year and percent): 2004 was -34.2, 2005 was -34.3 and 2006 was -31.6. For all fresh-frozen, low fat meat, the discount store prices were lower as follows (year and percent): 2004 was -17.4, 2005 was -16.9, and 2006 was -14.8.
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