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Consumer Food Gifting in the U.S., 3rd Edition


Attention: There is an updated edition available for this report.

  • Executive Summary
    • Scope and Methodology
      • Report Scope
    • Report summary
      • Food Gifting Market Size
    • Details on chocolate
    • Gift boxed chocolate
    • Christmas chocolate
    • Easter seasonal chocolate
    • Valentine's Day chocolate
    • Summary analysis
      • Food Gifting Purchaser, Gift Type, Gift Spend & Recipient Analysis
    • Summary analysis
      • Food gifting becoming more prevalent
      • Thank you, discretionary income gain
      • Food gift sweet spot stays the same, but 2010-2012 spend per gift trends upward
      • Thank you, higher-income consumers
      • Hispanic and black consumers overlooked? Or not interested?
      • Boxed chocolates/candies remain most widely purchased food gift
      • But other choices gathering steam
      • Food gift purchase recipient analysis reveals opportunities
    • Consumer Food Gifting Occasions
    • Summary analysis
    • How important is each occasion?
    • Consumer survey context
    • Food Gifting Purchase Rationales, Attributes Sought & Retail Distribution
    • Summary analysis
      • Intangible reasons
      • Tangible attributes
      • Utility, convenience & value
      • We don't buy them because they're cheap!
      • Increasing women's market participation
      • Harness the internet to reach older food gifters
      • Specialty food gift purchase sources holding ground
    • Why We Don't Buy Specialty Food Gifts
    • Summary analysis
      • We know you exist; now, prove you have sufficient value
      • Help us feel more confident about how our choice will match our recipient
      • Assuage our food fears & offer more healthful food gifts
      • Convince us that gift cards and cash are thoughtless and one-dimensional
      • Know thy enemy: trending gift card metrics
    • Food Gifting Manufacturers & Retailers
  • Market Size and Forecast
    • Summary analysis
      • Food gifting market
    • Details on chocolate
    • Gift boxed chocolate
    • Christmas chocolate
    • Easter seasonal chocolate
    • Valentine's Day chocolate
    • Food gifting market size and forecast
    • Seasonal and Gift-Boxed Chocolate Sales Trends & Segmentation
      • Segmentation analysis
        • Table Gift Box Chocolate and Seasonal Chocolate Segment Sales, Sales Growth & Share of chocolate sales, 2012
    • Gift Boxed Chocolate
      • Challenged by other formats deemed suitable for gifting
      • But presentation and quality appearance has its merits
    • Top marketers: gift boxes
      • Russell Stover maintains lead
        • Table Top Marketers of Gift Box Chocolates, 2012
    • Top marketers: Christmas chocolate
      • Table Top Marketers of Seasonal Chocolate Christmas Candy, 2012
    • Fast growers
      • Table 15 Fastest-Growing Seasonal Chocolate Christmas Candy Brand Lines, 2012
    • Top marketers: Easter chocolate
      • Hershey maintains Easter seasonal chocolate lead
        • Table Top Marketers of Seasonal Chocolate Easter Candy, 2012
      • Fast growers
        • Table 18 Fastest-Growing Seasonal Chocolate Easter Candy Brand Lines, 2012
    • Top marketers: Valentine's Day chocolate
      • Table Top Marketers of Seasonal Chocolate Valentine's Day Candy, 2012
    • Fast growers
      • Table 18 Fastest-Growing Seasonal Chocolate Valentine's Day Candy Brand Lines, 2012
  • Food Gifting Purchaser, Gift Type, Gift Spend & Recipient Analysis
    • Summary analysis
      • Food gifting becoming more prevalent
    • Thank you, discretionary income gain
    • Food gift sweet spot stays the same, but 2010-2012 spend per gift trends upward
    • Thank you, higher-income consumers
    • Hispanic and black consumers overlooked? Or not interested?
    • Boxed chocolates/candies remain most widely purchased food gift
    • But other choices gathering steam
    • Food gift purchase recipient analysis reveals opportunities
      • The male angle
      • The usage frequency angle
      • The income angle
    • Food gifting on the rise
      • Table Food Gifting: Purchasing for Self, Purchasing for Others & Receiving as Gift, 2010 vs. 2012
    • Buoyed by rise in per capita disposable income
      • Household net worth and disposable personal income up; household debt down
    • Food Gift Purchasers
      • Gift spending
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Spend per Gift, 2010 vs. 2012
      • Food gifting heavily reliant on $100K+ households, which generate 51% of spend
      • And higher spend per gift
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Spend per Gift by Household Income, 2012
      • Household growth trends skew toward high-income brackets, driving food gifting sales
      • Household income trends also favor food gifting market
      • Race/ethnicity spend analysis suggests low dollar share contribution among non-whites
      • Household growth trends suggest need to market to non-whites more aggressively
      • Black and Hispanic household income growth suggests increased opportunity
      • A contradiction arises
        • Table Food Gifting: Purchasing for Self, Purchasing for Others & Receiving as Gift: By Race/Ethnicity, 2012
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Spend per Gift by Race/Ethnicity, 2012
      • Significant regional variation
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Spend per Gift by Household Income, 2012
    • Purchasing Food Gifts for Others
      • Types of food gifts purchased
      • Gifting accounts for 15% of premium chocolate purchases
      • But 2010-2012 purchase incidence gains among other food gifts more pronounced
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others, 2010 vs. 2012
      • Age
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others by Age of Food Gifter, 2012
      • HH income makes a difference in choice of food gift
      • Regional favorites
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others by Household Income of Food Gifter, 2012
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others by Household Income of Food Gifter, 2012
    • Who are food gift recipients?
      • Spouse/significant other at top of list
    • Mom, yes; Dad, not so much
      • What are friends for?
        • Table Recipients of Food Gifts, 2010 vs. 2012
      • Males big food gifters for spouse/significant other & mom; females drive purchases for others
        • Table Recipients of Food Gifts by Gender of Food Gifter, 2012
      • Mom, dad and siblings popular recipients among younger givers
        • Table Recipients of Food Gifts by Age of Food Gifter, 2012
      • Higher income tied to wider food gift recipient distribution beyond family
        • Table Recipients of Food Gifts by Household Income of Food Gifter, 2012
    • Number of food gifting purchase recipients
      • Moderate usage frequency provides growth opportunity
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Number of Gift Recipients per Year, 2010 vs. 2012
      • The good news
      • Better news ahead, with just a bit of higher-frequency purchase conversion?
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Gift Recipient Hypothetical, 2010-2012-2014
      • Gender analysis demonstrates need to increase purchase frequency among men and women
        • Table Number of Gift Recipients per Year by Gender of Food Gifter, 2012
      • Explore additional food gifting occasions for 18-34s
        • Table Number of Gift Recipients per Year by Age of Food Gifter, 2012
      • Enhance value proposition among lower-income consumers
        • Table Number of Gift Recipients per Year by Household Income of Food Gifter, 2012
    • Purchasing Food Gifts for Self
      • Better to give to self than to others!
      • Everyday use helps tip the scale
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self, 2010 vs. 2012
      • Do not overlook men's role in food self-gifting
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self: By Gender, 2012
      • Age
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self: By Age, 2012
      • HH income
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self: By Household Income, 2012
  • Consumer Food Gifting Occasions
    • Summary analysis
      • How important is each occasion?
      • Consumer survey context
    • Food gifting special occasions
      • Winter holidays
    • Easter
      • Spend categories
      • Spend locations
      • Online growth
    • Valentine's Day
      • Spend categories
      • Spend locations
      • Online growth
    • Graduation
      • More than 6 million food gifting opportunities annually
      • Postsecondary opportunity
        • Table Graduation and Degree Opportunity, 2007-08 to 2011-12
      • HH income levels support food gifting spend
        • Table Graduations in Past 12 Months: Key Demographics, 2012
    • Weddings
      • Wedding rate significantly declines
      • More than 2 million weddings-and more than 275 million wedding guests
        • Table Marriages in Past 12 Months: Key Demographics, 2012
    • Anniversaries
      • 121 million married adults to target
        • Table Married Adults: Key Demographics, 2012
    • Mother's Day and Father's Day
      • Table Graduations in Past 12 Months: Key Demographics, 2012
    • Occasions for purchasing specialty food gifts: consumer survey analysis
    • Food gifting less prevalent for Valentine's Day, Thanksgiving & Easter
      • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, 2010 vs. 2012
    • Winter holidays food gift purchase share
      • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, with Population Estimates, 2012
      • Gender: a close call
        • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts: By Gender, 2010/2012
      • Age: winter holidays a key exception
        • Table Occasions For Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts: By Age, 2010/2012
      • HH income and food-centric occasion connection
        • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts: By Household Income, 2010/2012
  • Food Gifting Purchase Rationales, Attributes & Retail Distribution
    • Summary analysis
      • Intangible reasons
      • Tangible attributes
      • Utility, convenience & value
      • We don't buy them because they're cheap!
      • Reaching women
      • Harness the internet to reach older food gifters
      • Specialty food gift purchase sources holding ground
    • Reasons for buying specialty food gifts
      • Gifts intended to convey an emotional expression: food gift recipient enjoyment matters
      • Why buy food gift unless the recipient views it as a special, a splurge?
      • Recipients may not need a food gift-but that doesn't mean they wouldn't want one
      • Utility plays a role
      • Convenience and value also relevant, with a twist
      • Food gifts aren't cheap!
      • Rationales becoming more prevalent over time
      • Internet playing a role?
        • Table Reasons for Purchasing Food Gifts, 2010 vs. 2012
    • Women: gift should be uncommon purchase and should fill want vs. need
      • Table Reasons for Purchasing Food Gifts: By Gender, 2012
    • Attributes sought when purchasing food gifts
      • Quality and appearance prevalently sought
    • Trust and food health also relevant
    • Product variety, distinctiveness & special meaning vs. value
    • Shipping and online availability
      • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Food Gifts, 2010 vs. 2012
    • Gender & the issue of thought put into the gift
      • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Food Gifts: By Gender, 2012
    • With age comes wider desire for quality, product variety ... and online availability?
      • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Food Gifts: By Age, 2012
    • HH income analysis
      • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Food Gifts: By Household Income, 2012
    • Specialty food gift purchase sources
    • Holding ground
      • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations in Past 12 Months, 2010 vs. 2012
    • Similar food gift purchase incidence by gender at many retailers: please explain!
      • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations in Past 12 Months: By Gender, 2012
    • Shopping context: women garner higher shopping share across retail segments
      • Table Retailer Brand Shopping in Past 4 Weeks: Usage Share by Gender, 2012
    • Age analysis
      • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations in Past 12 Months: By Age, 2012
    • HH income analysis
      • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations in Past 12 Months: By Age, 2012
  • Why We Don't Buy Specialty Food Gifts
    • Summary analysis
      • We know you exist; now, prove you have sufficient value
    • Help us feel more confident about how our choice will match our recipient
    • Assuage our food fears & offer more healthful food gifts
    • Convince us that gift cards and cash are thoughtless and one-dimensional
    • Know thy enemy: trending gift card metrics
    • Introduction
    • Reasons for not buying food gifts
      • Knowledge of food gifts versus food gift value
      • Knowledge about recipient
      • Food fears & food health
      • Alternative gifts
        • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts, 2010 vs. 2012
    • Reasons for not buying food gifts: all consumers versus food gifters
      • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts: All Consumers vs. Food Gifters, 2012
    • Gender analysis
      • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts: Food Gifters vs. non-Food Gifters: By Gender, 2012
    • Age analysis: 18-24s, 25-34s & 35-44s
      • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts: Food Gifters vs.non-food Gifters: By 18-44 Age Brackets, 2012
    • Age analysis: 45-54s, 55-64s & 65+s
      • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts: Food Gifters vs. non-Food Gifters, by 45 and Over Age Brackets, 2012
    • HH income analysis
      • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts: Food Gifters vs.non-food Gifters, by Household Income, 2012
    • Regional analysis
      • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts: Food Gifters vs. non-Food Gifters, by Region, 2012
    • Gift Card Competition
    • Positive holiday spending trend
    • Purchase spend trends
    • Durbin Amendment and CARD Act
      • Reg E dormancy, inactivity and service fees
    • Gift card usage & spending trends
    • Gift card purchase share segmentation
      • Table U.S. Adult Gift Card Purchases: Dollar Value by Segment, 2010-2012
      • Purchase share leadership goes to
        • Table U.S. Adult Gift Card Purchases: Dollar Value Share by Segment, 2010-2012
    • Gift card usage penetration stabilizes
      • Table Consumer Payment Card Usage Trending: By Type, 2010-2012
    • Gift card usage trending by retail distribution segment
      • Table Gift Card Usage Trending: By Retailer Type, 2010-2012
  • Food Gifting Manufacturers & Retailers
    • Chocolate
    • The Hershey Company
      • Tis the season
        • Table Hershey Gift Box, Easter, Christmas & Valentine's Day Chocolate Sales & Sales Share, 2012
    • Sales on the upswing
      • Table The Hershey Company: Selected Sales Metrics, 2006-2011
      • Product price increase
    • Pouring money into advertising
      • Brands receiving support
      • Trade promotion activity
    • Hershey's retail customer base
      • Table Hershey's Sales by Channel, 2011
    • Product overview
    • New product introductions
    • Lindt & Sprungli AG
      • Company overview
    • Products
    • New products
    • Seasonal confectioneries
    • Other Chocolate Products
    • Mars Inc.
    • Products
    • Marketing
    • Russell Stover
      • Company overview
    • Products
      • New products
    • Marketing
      • Whitman's Turns 100
      • Television advertising
      • Valentine's Day
      • Easter
      • Build-a-Box
      • Novelty Gifts
    • Floral
    • 1-800-FLOWERS.COM
      • Company overview
    • Product and distribution focus
    • Sales performance
    • Company strategy
    • 1-800-FLOWERS.COM is doing well in the face of a recession
    • Technology makes paying easier
    • Strategic partnerships
    • FTD
      • Company overview
      • Consumer floral and gift mass marketing
      • Floral network services
    • Planned FTD spinoff
      • Table FTD Revenue, Orders & Order Value, 2009-2011
    • New collections
    • FTD College Rose Collection expanded
      • Program expands gifting occasions
    • Jane Seymour Silk Botanicals by FTD Collection provide floral alternative
      • Program targets weddings, holiday gift giving, and year-round home décor
    • Specialty Foods
      • Candy Bouquet
    • Company strategy
    • New owners are making changes
    • Dean & DeLuca
      • Company overview
      • Food gifts and other products
    • Edible Arrangements
      • Company overview
    • Company strategy
    • New products
    • with new advertising
    • and technology
    • And strategic partnerships
    • Harry and David Holdings, Inc.
      • Company overview
    • Financial information
    • Food gift products
    • Company strategy
    • Houston Harvest Gift Products LLC
      • Company overview
    • The Wisconsin Cheeseman
      • Company overview
    • Zabar's and Company, Inc.
      • Company overview
  • Appendix
    • Methodology
      • Consumer survey methodology
    • Market size and forecast
    • Report table interpretation
    • Product Definitions
    • Types of Food Gifts

Fueled by upper-income household spending trends, the consumer food gifting market is on firmer ground, buoyed by continued product innovation and usage occasion expansion: Packaged Facts’ Food Gifting in the U.S. forecasts U.S. consumer food gifting sales to reach $11.15 billion in 2012, up 2.5% from 2011. Despite this positive news, we see a plethora of untapped opportunity. While purchase frequency has trended upward during 2012-2012, it remains modest. To expand purchase frequency, we believe the industry can do more to ensure that food gifts are priced at tiers that allow for expanded lower-income market participation. We also identify a variety of tangible and intangible (emotional) product purchase and attribute rationales that can overcome sales obstacles among food gifters and non-food gifters alike. To assist market participants in maximizing sales and marketing opportunity, this report:

  • Assesses the food gifter from a variety of perspectives: the degree people purchase food gifts for themselves and for others; the amount they spend per gift, the number of recipients for whom they purchase the gifts, and the kind of recipient (i.e. mother, friend, coworker, etc.). To help shed light on each of these perspectives, in each case, we trend 2010 and 2012 proprietary consumer data.
  • Analyzes food gifting occasions, including winter holidays, birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Thanksgiving, anniversary, Easter, Halloween, housewarmings, weddings and graduations. We focus on trending food gifting purchase occasions during 2010-2012; providing related purchaser demographic analysis; and assessing occasion opportunity.
  • Frames why consumers purchase food gifts, what attributes they seek when choosing a food gift, and posits related questions and ideas to market participants.
  • Explores rationales given for not purchasing specialty food gifts and offer ideas to address them—to assist market participants in assessing purchase obstacles.
We also assess leading food gifting manufacturer & retailer strategies and product developments. Falling into three primary catergories (chocolate, floral, and specialty food), the companies include The Hershey Company, Lindt & Sprungli AG, Mars Inc., Russell Stover, 1-800-FLOWERS.COM, FTD, Candy Bouquet, Dean & DeLuca, Edible Arrangements, Harry and David Holdings, Inc., Houston Harvest Gift Products LLC, The Wisconsin Cheeseman, and Zabar’s and Company, Inc.

In addition to our market size and forecast, we provide detailed sale analysis of gift boxed chocolate and seasonal chocolate, a significant food gifting sales contributor. This includes 2011-2012 gift box chocolate, seasonal Christmas, seasonal Easter, and seasonal Valentine’s Day chocolate candy marketer and brand sales and unit comparisons, and identifying fast growing brand lines among each of these four chocolate candy segments.


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