As millions of Americans pine for the upcoming Labor Day weekend, there’s little doubt that many have lavish barbecues and backyard parties planned to revel in the last official holiday hurrah of the summer. So as the summer winds down, grills are heating up.
When we look at the calendar year, Labor Day is virtually tied with Memorial Day for being the second-highest selling holiday for beer (behind the 4th of July). On the fresh meat side, the week of Labor Day ranks first for deli bulk meat and second-highest for fresh ground beef. Pricing and supply issues, however, have negatively affected the fresh meat department over the past year, which means sales could shift around a bit.
Challenges notwithstanding, however, fresh meat remains a vital component of retail store health, accounting for 11% of store sales. In fact, Labor Day has been among the top-five highest selling weeks for deli bulk meat since 2010. What’s more, dollar sales from the meat department are highly connected to nearly 70% of total store sales. And with a few key sub-categories in the beer aisle ringing up significant sales, retailers and suppliers have a big opportunity to pair meat and beer together using cross-promotion and merchandising to drive fired up sales across the store.