MADISON, Wis. — The International Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association (IDDBA) has released Consumers in the Deli: Attitudes, Buying Behavior, & Purchase Drivers. The last such study was published in 2004.

This benchmark study examines factors behind consumers’ eating behaviors, including the role of evolving tastes as well as economic factors. Additionally, to validate how the economy continues to affect consumer attitudes, a series of questions from last year’s New Value Shopper study was asked again.

The study indicated cautiously optimistic are recovering from the recession but are still wary and unwilling to completely abandon frugal tactics. Consumers are not being passive. They're very vocal and they're feeling empowered.

IDDBA published the following list of consumer influences based on the report:

  • Every penny counts; price matters.
  • Value matters. Buying food that has limited shelf-life is perceived as being wasteful.
  • Freshness and appearance influence purchases.
  • Food safety matters and trust is enhanced by proof that the food is safe.
  • Nutritional information, calorie counts, allergen alerts and sodium levels should be visible on the package.
  • Food that is ready to eat quickly is important.
  • A variety of choices and new items are welcome.
  • Tasting before buying is preferred.

The consumer survey assessed demographic and economic data for 4,000 respondents and specific deli and bakery shopping behavior and preference information from 2,000 respondents for each department. The 2010 responses were compared with studies done five, 10 and 15 years ago. Purchase behavior data are broken out by eating occasion and purchase and consumption locations.

For more information, go to