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Numerator looks at what brands will attract Canadian’s food spending dollars

Generational and demographic shifts reflected in brand spending decisions, with private labels gaining traction.
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Numerator, a data and tech company serving the market research space, has released its Brands to Watch 2024 looking at what brands are attracting Canadian food spending dollars.

The study looks at what brands and flavours attracted those dollars in 2023 and where those dollars will go this year, even in this time of household belt tightening when it comes to grocery budgets and discretionary spending. 

Last year, Numerator found the fastest growing brands in Canada could fell under the banner of small indulgences. Italpasta, a Canadian-made pasta brand, topped the list, followed by such beverage brands as Arizona, Red Bull, and Powerade. Snack brands like Snack Factor and Old Dutch Six were also popular, along with bread brand La Baguetterie Bakery

Demographic shifts, especially immigration, are having immediate impacts on the Canadian consumer landscape. According to Numerator, Canada’s population growth in 2022 driven by new Canadians contributed some $1.6 billion to dollars spend on food. Numerator suggests that because many new Canadian are starting families, brands such as Dr. Oetker to Maple Lodge Farms has shown to be popular amongst many, along with beverage brands like Aquafine and Crush, and childhood nutrition brand Gerber. Others popular brand were Unico, Wonder and Beatric.

Gen Z poses some interesting food buying trends that grocery and c-stores should watch closely, as the brands this demographic is interested in reflects their growing desire to cook at home. That is why brands such as Johnsonville and Sunrise Farms were popular last year, as well as packaged greens brand such as Earthbound Farm Organic

READ: The evolution and power of private label brands

Boomers and older Canadian consumers have more disposable income and make more shopping trips, according to Numerator, offering more opportunities for manufacturers and retailers to attract their food spend dollars. Snacks and beverages, continue to open their wallets with brands such as Red Bull, Christie Crispers, A&W, Coors, Sparkling Ice and even a childhood favourite Chef Boyardee making it into their grocery baskets.

Private label brand will continue to be an important part of the retail landscape. Canadian consumers worked to balance their budgets amidst ongoing inflation in 2023, contributing to the growing popularity of private label brands. According to Numerator, Club and Dollar retailers’ own brands grew the most with Canadian consumers this year, a surprising move away from such retailers Walmart and Loblaws. Top private label brand providers included Dollarama, Kirkland Signature (Costco), Selection (Metro), Irresistibles (Metro), No Name Naturally Imperfect (Loblaws), Sweet Shoppe (Dollarama), Carnaby (Loblaws), Fruitee Gummee (Dollarama), Gourmet D (Dollarama) and President’s Choice Splendido (Loblaws).

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