Despite the economic uncertainty, consumers still are searching for convenience. The cookie category offers time-starved consumers an easy solution when it comes to a sweet treat or comfort food. Also, as ingredients are more closely monitored for allergy concerns, many home-baked goods are no longer allowed at school functions. This further served to boost cookies in overall sales and in contribution to total bakery.
Nationally, cookie sales accounted for 9.8 percent of total bakery department dollar sales during the 52 weeks ending Nov. 29, 2009, up from 9.4 percent the previous year. Cookies grew at a faster rate than the bakery department in year-over-year sales.
Cookies averaged $929 per store per week, an increase of 5.8 percent from $878 last year. Sales peaked during the week of Dec. 20 at $1,570 per store, driven by holiday celebrations. Specifically, cookie platters drove the significant increase that week. The subcategory increased sales 85 percent over the average weekly store sales, reflecting the convenience of cookie platters during the holidays. As usual, the first week in January registered the lowest sales, averaging $646 per store.
The East region experienced the greatest dollar sales during the 52 weeks ending Nov. 29, 2009, with an average of $1,170 per store per week and an average of 9.1 percent contribution to bakery department sales. The Central and the West regions outpaced the 9.8 percent national average contribution to the bakery department. Cakes traditionally dominate the South region, and cookie contribution to the total bakery department was the smallest among the four regions. The South still showed growth in cookie sales over the previous year.
Cookies increased sales year-over-year in each region. The West region saw the greatest growth in dollar sales, increasing 9.5 percent year-over-year. All regions also experienced an increase in cookie contribution to total bakery department compared to last year.
Nationally, everyday cookies led the category with 58.4 percent dollar share, followed by iced cookies at 15.5 percent, specialty cookies at 6.8 percent, cookie platters at 5.2 percent and message cookies at 4.4 percent. Mini cookies, filled cookies and cookie doughs and mixes, identified as “Other Cookies” on the graph, combined to contribute less than 4 percent.
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 Nov. 29, 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.