supermarket shelves with products offered for sale

image: Supermarket shelves. Original photo by lyzadanger. Color editing by Diliff. Image via Wikimedia. Note that the shelf that stretches across the bottom of the photo is a popular item here at Provence-sur-la-Prairie: cat food.

|| 3 January 2021

Food Shopping Trends 2021

One thing is reasonably certain in 2021: We are going to see continuing changes in what foods and services are offered in our supermarkets — and the way products are arranged in our food stores. The pandemic set this change in motion. All predictions are that in 2021 we will see increasing change.

For the most part, the changes are positive ones that could benefit our efforts to live healthy and slim. We do not need any more fat-producing “frankenfoods.”

The Washington Post limits the number of articles non-subscribers can read. But if you have not yet consumed your limit, you might find Grocery trends: Fewer new products, but more changes in supermarkets and shopping of interest.

Most of us have been made aware of the shortages and unavailability of common items during the pandemic. Efforts are being made to prevent these.

In the article, some predictions are quotes from Phil Lempert, food industry analyst and editor at He says a top priority now is production efficiency: solving problems of gaps in distribution, packaging and sales which lead to shortages and unavailable items in the previous year. Some supermarket chains are skipping distributors and contracting directly with farmers to guarantee product quality, availability and delivery. And identifying these farmers to the shoppers.

As I have pointed out in at least two of the Chic & Slim books, one reason for the high quality of French food products is the demand to know where and by whom the produce or food ingredient (such as the wheat for bread) is produced.

Note: One brand of flour I order from Vitacost owned by Kroger has the name and photograph of the farmer who grew the grain for that flour on the front of the bag.

In the Washington Post article, the predictions for changes in the way we shop are also of interest. When I was a child, we phoned our regular grocery store, one of the employees wrote down our order on a little pad, and an hour or two later, Bernard, the delivery boy, appeared at our back door with our food order. We always got very prompt service because the grocer, Mr. C. lived across the alley and did not have a storm cellar. Whenever there was a tornado forecast, he and his wife would take refuge in our storm cellar.

Since November I now go online to Walmart+ and choose the items I want to buy and the time I wish them delivered. I order from a Walmart Supercenter that is a 3-minute drive from my house. This delivery service does cost $98 a year for unlimited deliveries of minimum $35. But in this pandemic, I feel that this “contactless” delivery service is certainly worth it. In any case I hate shopping, and I am delighted to have someone do the chore for me at such a reasonable cost.

The Walmart+ store shoppers so far have been consistent in picking good quality produce and the expiration dates have always been far in advance. The drivers have thus far have been careful placing the bags and boxes on my front porch. No broken eggs or leaking cartons of milk. And I have been faithful in tipping the delivery drivers. These are hard times for many people.

You can read Grocery trends: Fewer new products, but more changes in supermarkets and shopping on the Washington Post website.

be chic, stay slim, eat healthy — Anne Barone