Easter 2012, IBISWorld, Seafood, Specialty Chocolate Sales To Surge: Sales

Seafood and fair trade chocolate on Easter menu: IBISWorld

By Michelle Hammond
Wednesday, 04 April 2012

Spending on seafood will be the highest growth area this Easter, according to IBISWorld, while domestic tourism operators and specialty chocolate retailers will also do well.


A new IBISWorld report reveals spending on seafood is expected to increase by 5.3% from last year to reach $22.3 million, reflecting Australian consumers’ focus on healthier eating.


As per tradition, Good Friday will see many Australians abstain from meat and choose seafood dishes instead.


“Other factors contributing to the growth in seafood spending include… ongoing product innovation and falling prices due to increasing imports,” IBISWorld said.


While seafood will be the standout winner this year, Australians will also spend $133 million on alcohol, up 2.5% from last year.


Wine – particularly imported varieties – is expected to be the alcoholic beverage most favoured at Easter lunches around the country. Other popular choices include cider and boutique beers.


Total spend on food and non-alcoholic beverages will increase by 2.9% to $339.6 million.


But unlike other holidays, Easter doesn’t compel consumers to splurge. Australians are forecast to spend $875.1 million over the four-day break, which equates to around $37.70 per person.


Karen Dobie, IBISWorld general manager for Australia, says the retail sector will enjoy only moderate spending growth over the Easter break.


However, she predicts many retailers not traditionally linked with Easter will still attempt to capitalise on the holiday by offering seasonal sales on clothing, accessories and electronics.


Holidays are still on the agenda for Easter but consumers are expected to say closer to home, with many swapping an expensive getaway for driving trips closer to home.


“Last year, Australians made the most of the five-day Easter long weekend… to head interstate or even overseas to nearby destinations such as Fiji, New Zealand and Bali,” Dobie says.


“This year, we’re projecting a similar rise in travel spending to $203.7 million, but domestic travel will prove more popular.”


Domestic tourism operators are expected to benefit as a result. More Australians will also choose to stay put and finish DIY jobs around the house, which is good news for hardware retailers.


Finally, chocolate and confectionary spending is expected to grow by 3% to $176.5 million, with fair trade and luxury chocolates tipped to sell particularly well.


“While Australians are favouring a trend towards healthier eating, chocolate is the traditional indulgence over Easter and this year will be no exception,” Dobie says.


“Fair trade and luxury chocolates will be racing off the shelves this Easter as Australians embrace both the concept of sustainability and the chance to be spoilt.”


Fair trade chocolate has grown in popularity by an astonishing 11,000% over the past five years with fair trade chocolate accounted for nearly 6% of all chocolate sales in 2010/2011.


“Specialty retailers favouring decadent chocolate lines are expected to do well this Easter, with consumers choosing to buy one special item over several lower quality eggs,” Dobie says.

According to IBISWorld, brands such as Max Brenner, Lindt, Koko Black and Haigh’s Chocolates can expect strong performances.


“Some retailers [are] offering online catalogues and home delivery services to make gourmet chocolates more accessible for cashed-up, time-poor consumers,” Dobie says.

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