ASMI Study Reveals $300 Million Opportunity For Seafood Retailers

A recent study by the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute (ASMI) discovered several opportunities for retailers to improve sales, totaling up to more than $300 million annually if all retailers were to adopt optimal promotion strategies.

The study analyzed sales performance of 60 large and midsized food retail chains in three major Alaska seafood categories-wild salmon, cod and crab (king, snow and Dungeness). Retailers were scored on a five-point scale in the areas of fair share performance, department share, sales velocity, promotion (time frames, frequency, depth of promotional discount) and retail price; retailers were then sorted based on performance in order to compare the ten best retailers-labeled “Best of Class” (BOC) – with the 10 lowest performing retailers.

The findings showed that Best Of Class retailers’ wild salmon sales were correlated with better total seafood department sales performance:

  • When wild salmon was offered on a year-round basis in the seafood counter, sales of both wild and farmed salmon improved.
  • There is significant opportunity to offer wild salmon as a fixed-weight frozen item. Retailers who expanded their offering to additional species, such as keta or pink, have better frozen seafood performance.
  • BOC retailers promoted salmon more frequently over longer time periods but at smaller discounts for overall better sales and profit performance.

Best Of Class retailers in cod sales generated better total finfish category sales:

  • BOC promoted cod twice as often and at slightly larger discounts
  • BOC in cod sales generated better total finfish category sales
  • There is a big opportunity to improve cod sales using BOC methods

Best Of Class practices could generate sales improvement in all three crab species:

  • BOC in snow crab sales generated better total shellfish category sales.
  • BOC in snow crab sales generated better results in total shellfish category sales

Encore Associates of San Ramon, California conducted the study using information from data management company IRI/Fresh Look. The study compared sales for the 52-week period ending October 6, 2013 and covered the continental United States.

This study indicates that there is substantial opportunity to improve the performance of retail seafood departments by adopting the strategies of the BOC retailers. Most retailers could benefit from a thorough assessment of salmon, cod and crab categories.

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