Retail Trends

Beef In Retail

As summer was coming to a close, production of beef and other competing proteins was opening back up – returning to levels comparable to 2019. This gave grocery retailers confidence to get back to featuring beef more often in weekly ads. Beef advertisements in weekly store circulars have increased to 3.7 advertisements per week on a U.S. average. While that is around 1 advertisement per week lower than last year, it is still an improvement from the lows in early June (at 1.5 advertisements per week). Also, beef advertisements accounted for 54 percent of the total features for the three major proteins in mid-August. This is the highest proportion of beef features since Memorial Day, and it is 1 percentage point stronger than last year.

As Labor Day approached, wholesale beef values increased as retailers secured product for their weekly ads and holiday weekend beef features. This served to benefit consumers with beef products that are less expensive than previously in 2020. USDA reported the all-fresh beef retail price dropped 64 cents in July, averaging $6.74/lb. Analysts expect the all-fresh retail beef price to reach an average of $6.00/lb. by December, helping move large volumes of beef and encouraging consumers to continue purchasing beef.