The donut category has shown impressive growth in recent years. Donuts combine affordability with the familiar indulgence of a comfort food. This has proven to be a popular combination during times of economic stress.
Nationally, donut sales accounted for an average of 7.3 percent of total bakery department dollar sales during the 52 weeks ending July 25, 2009, up 0.1 percent from the prior year. During the same period over the previous year, donuts lost 0.5 percent market share of the total bakery category. The past 12 months represent a rebound in donut popularity, as sales increased at a faster rate than the bakery department's year-over-year sales.
Donuts averaged $691 per store per week, an increase of 5.7 percent from $654 last year. Donuts sales peaked during the week of Feb. 28 at $844 per store, which was largely driven by the celebration of Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday) and the beginning of the pre-Easter Lenten period. During this same week, the filled donuts subcategory experienced a 76.2 percent sales increase over the average weekly store sales. This spike was driven most notably by paczki, which are synonymous with the holiday.
The first week in January registered the lowest sales, averaging $594 per store, likely due in large part to consumers' New Year's resolutions to eat more healthfully.
The Central region experienced the greatest dollar sales and contribution to the total bakery department during the year, with an average of $1,170 per store per week. The Central and West regions outpaced the national average donut contribution to the bakery department with 11.7 percent and 8.2 percent, respectively.
Donut sales increased year-over-year in all four regions. The East region saw the greatest growth in dollar sales compared to the prior year, increasing 9.2 percent. Although the East experienced the greatest increase in sales, donuts contributed only 4.4 percent to the total bakery department, the least of all the regions. This reflects the popularity of bagels and muffins as strong donut competition in this region.
Nationally, assorted/variety bulk donuts led the category with 48.4 percent dollar share, followed by yeast donuts at 28.0 percent. Rounding out the remainder of donut category dollar share were gem/mini/donut holes with 9.7 percent, cake donuts with 8.0 percent, filled donuts with 5.6 percent and other donuts with 0.3 percent.
Gem/mini/donut holes and yeast donuts lost share to assorted/variety bulk donuts compared to last year. Assorted/variety bulk donuts experienced the greatest increase in dollar sales compared to the prior year, increasing 2.2 percent. The gem/mini/donut hole category was the only subcategory to experience a decrease in dollar sales, declining 0.6 percent from the prior year.
This sales review, provided by the Perishables Group FreshFacts® powered by Nielsen, includes supermarket in-store bakery scanner data results from the 52 weeks ending July 25, 2009, representing more than 62 percent of the national supermarket ACV share. For more information, contact the Perishables Group's Kelli Beckel by phone: 773/929-7013, or e-mail: KelliB@perishablesgroup.com.