Well some of food industry and grocery chain research and education charity IGD’s most recent analysis suggests it is.
Food to go in the UK offers significant opportunities for growth, it said, as it revealed results of its first research into the market. On the back of changing shopper lifestyles, IGD is anticipating the market to be worth £16.1bn in 2016, up by 6.8% from 2015.
The IGD analysis splits the UK food-to-go market into five segments including: coffee specialists worth £2.7bn; quick service restaurants worth £5bn; food-to-go specialists worth £4.6bn; convenience, forecourt and other retailers worth £2.5bn; and supermarkets and hypermarkets worth £1.2bn.
IGD’s shopper research identified five key ‘missions’, or occasions, for food-to-go shoppers – lunch, breakfast, snacking, leisure and drinks. Lunch is the most popular reason for buying food on the go; 70% of shoppers bought something for lunch in the last month. Some 28% bought something on the go for breakfast in the last month. 45% bought a snack on the go in the last month.
Almost a third (32%) of leisure food-to-go shoppers bought a drink, snack or sandwich to eat in, or to relax.
Supermarkets are the most popular places to purchase a drink on the go (taking 30% of that market) followed by convenience stores (which take 23%).