Market Research Logo

Food Gifting in the U.S., 4th Edition


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

Food Gifting in the U.S., 4th Edition

Americans – particularly higher income consumers – are keeping the food gifting industry strong. Packaged Facts projected that in 2014 the food gifting industry would grow by almost 5%, and continue to see good gains through 2016. Every occasion can now be an occasion to send food, as the industry has developed products and marketing campaigns to convince consumers that food, not flowers or anything else they may consider, is the right gift for everyone.

But food gifting isn’t just candy anymore. Food Gifting in the U.S., 4th Edition, examines the new and wide variety of food items people give and receive as gifts, and why. And Packaged Facts also delves into the new challenges and opportunities that lie ahead for marketers of food gifts, including food safety/health issues and the use of social media to promote and build brand loyalty.

Relying on three proprietary surveys spanning five years (2010-2014), Food Gifting in the U.S., 4th Edition provides a wealth of insight regarding food gifters: whom they purchase food gifts for, what kind of food gift they purchase, how much they spend per gift, how many purchases they make, which occasions they purchase them for, why they buy them, and why they don’t buy them. The analysis in this edition also covers the corporate food gift recipient.

More comprehensively, report coverage does the following:

  • Includes a market size and forecast for consumer and corporate food gifting.
  • Evaluates food gifting opportunities by occasion/event, self-gifting, and social media applications.
  • Via proprietary survey analysis, assesses food gifters, including food gift recipients, what they spend per gift and how many people get these gifts. We also assess who reports receiving food gifts. To shed light on each of these perspectives, we trend 2010-2014 proprietary consumer data.
  • Via proprietary survey analysis, assesses food gifters according to what kind of food gifts they give – and why (what occasion)., we trend 2010, 2012 and 2014 proprietary consumer data.
  • Explores rationales for why consumers purchase food gifts, what attributes they seek when choosing a food gift, and why they do not purchasing specialty food gifts.
  • Provides insight on consumer online, phone and mail ordering in general and with respect to gourmet gift baskets; and, via more than 15 retail distribution options, assesses where consumers have purchased food gifts during the past 12 months.
  • Evaluates the degree to which adults receive food gifts in connection to their jobs, including analysis by type of gift and occasion.
  • Identifies key trends in food gifting, supported by examples and related product images, including seasonality; personalization; licensing; artisan, premium, and gourmet propositions; private label; and DIY kits.
  • Trends sales of IRI-based multi-channel seasonal and gift box chocolate candy sales for 2012-2013.
  • Analyzes leading food gifting companies, organized by product specialty: Chocolate specialists (Russell Stover Candies, Lindt & Sprungli AG and Godiva), Bakery food specialists (Cookies by Design and Nothing Bundt Cakes), Salty food specialist (Popcornopolis), Fruit specialist (Edible Arrangements); Savory food specialist (Hickory Farms), Gourmet food specialists (Harry & David and Dean & DeLuca) and Floral specialists (1-800-FLOWERS.COM and FTD Companies, Inc.). Each profile focuses on points of differentiation, new product innovation and social media applications.


SAMPLE INSIGHTS AND HIGHLIGHTS

  • Packaged Facts pinpoints signs of growing food gifting strength among middle-income consumers, which bodes well for a market that has relied heavily on higher-income consumers to tow it through and out of the recession.
  • Beyond Christmas and Easter, opportunities exist for marketers to tie food gifts to more explicitly religious themes by targeting various religious groups accordingly, especially considering that more than 20% of U.S. adults identify as Catholic and roughly 15% claim to be Baptist.
  • Services like Giftster could be instrumental helping food gifters unravel the intended recipient’s tastes and preferences (a dilemma that Packaged Facts survey data suggests is a barrier to purchase), and then guide them to more confidently select the appropriate gift.
  • In 2014, more than 40% of Packaged Facts survey respondents reported buying at least one specialty food gift for someone else during the previous 12 months.
  • More than half of holiday shoppers plan to spend nearly $130 on gifts for themselves this holiday season.
  • One way for marketers to capitalize on self-gifting is by offering buy one, get one offers that encourage shoppers to buy an item for themselves as well as a gift for someone else.
  • Men are more likely than women to have purchased food gifts from a variety of retail types.
  • Hispanic food gifters are most likely to purchase such a gift for mothers; African-American food gifters are most likely to purchase them for siblings; and Asian food gifters are most likely to purchase them for coworkers.
  • By age, food gifters age 35-44 and 65+ are most likely to have given food gifts 5+ times in the last 12 months.
  • Among adult respondents, food-related issues, such as food freshness, food spoilage/contamination, recipient food allergies, recipient dieting, and recipient cultural/religious food restrictions are not only prevalently cited as reasons for not buying food gifts; they are also gaining in prevalence over time.
  • Employers may be missing opportunities to connect with employees in a way that illustrates respect and appreciation for who they are “beyond work”: for example, among full-time employed adults who received a food gift in connection with their employment, only 5% got one for Mother’s Day and only 8% got one for Father’s Day, penetration rates that likely fall far below the percentage of mothers and fathers in the workforce.
Market Insights: A Selection From The Report

Types of food gifts people purchase for themselves

While 42% of consumers purchased at least one food gift for others in the past 12 months, some 47% purchased at least one for themselves, underscoring food gifting’s inherent power of self-gratification, indulgence and pampering.

Mixing sweet indulgence with everyday use

But while boxed chocolates/candies were the most prevalently purchased for self, other food gifts are not far behind, including cooking condiments, sweet baked gift foods, nut/salty snack gift foods, and sweet condiments. In this regard, self-gifters choose items such as chocolate or sweet baked gift foods to indulge their sweet tooth, as well as more practical items they can use every day.

  • Executive Summary
    • Report Scope
    • Report Summary
      • Market size and forecast
      • Food gifting opportunities
      • Winter holidays
      • Easter
      • Valentine's Day
      • Mother's Day and Father's Day
      • Graduations
      • Weddings
      • Anniversaries
      • Self-gifting opportunities
      • Moving the wish list needle toward social gifting
      • Updating the monthly club
      • Food gifting purchasers and recipients
      • To whom do people give food gifts?
      • To how many people do they give food gifts?
      • How much do they spend per food gift?
      • Who reports receiving a food gift?
      • Types of food gifts purchased & purchase occasions
      • Types of food gifts people purchase for others
      • Types of food gifts people purchase for self
      • Food gift purchase occasions
      • Reasons for buying and not buying food gifts
      • Food gifting retail distribution
      • Corporate food gifting
      • Personal versus business food gifts, by gift type
      • Personal versus business food gifts, by gift occasion
      • Food gifting: product innovation
      • Gift box and seasonal chocolate sales
      • Companies and brands
      • Bakery food specialists
      • Salty food specialist
      • Fruit specialist
      • Savory food specialist
      • Gourmet food specialists
      • Floral specialists
      • FTD Companies, Inc.
  • Market Size and Forecast
    • Market size and forecast
      • Table Food Gifting Market Size and Forecast, 2012-2016
      • Market context
      • A cautionary word
      • On the corporate side
      • Food for thought: breaking down food gift spending
        • Table Average Spend per Food Gift, Influence on Total Food Gifting Spend, 2014
      • Food for thought: importance of spend frequency
        • Table Average Spend per Food Gift, Applied to Food Gift Purchase Frequency, 2014
  • Food Gifting Market Opportunities
    • Summary analysis
      • Winter holidays
      • Easter
      • Valentine's Day
      • Mother's Day and Father's Day
      • Graduations
      • Weddings
      • Anniversaries
      • Self-gifting opportunities
      • Moving the wish list needle toward social gifting
      • Updating the monthly club
      • How major occasions stack up
      • Winter holidays
      • Opportunity gap
      • Easter
      • Opportunity gap
      • 2013-2014 spend trend: negative
        • Table 2014 Planned Easter Spending, by Gift Type
      • Catering to religious affiliation
      • Valentine's Day
      • Opportunity gap
      • 2013-2014 spend trend: negative
        • Table 2014 Planned Valentine's Day Spending, by Gift Type
      • Mother's Day and Father's Day
      • Opportunity gap
        • Table Percent of Male & Female Adult Population Who Are Fathers & Mothers, by Age, Race/Ethnicity & HH Income, 2013
      • Mother's Day 2013-2104 spend trend: mixed
        • Table 2014 Planned Mother's Day Spending, by Gift Type
      • Father's Day 2012-2013 spend trend: positive
        • Table 2013 Planned Father's Day Spending, by Gift Type
      • Graduations
      • Opportunity
      • More than 7 million food gifting opportunities annually
      • Postsecondary gains lead way
        • Table High School Graduations & Postsecondary Degrees Conferred, 2007-2008 to 2016-2017
      • Demographic trends
        • Table Postsecondary Degrees Conferred, by Type and by Gender, 2007-2008 to 2016-2017
      • Weddings
      • Opportunity gap
      • Wedding rate rebound
      • 2009-2013 trends suggest demographic shifts in play
        • Table Adult Age 18+ Who Got Married in Past 12 Months, by Age, Race/Ethnicity & HH Income, 2013
      • Anniversaries
        • Table Adults Age 18+ Who Are Married, by Age, Race/Ethnicity & HH Income, 2013
      • Self-gifting opportunities
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others vs. Purchased for Self, 2014
      • Moving the wish list needle toward social gifting
      • Subscription boxes are the new "monthly club"
  • Food Gifting Purchasers and Recipients
    • Summary analysis
      • To whom do people give food gifts?
      • To how many people do they give food gifts?
      • How much do they spend per food gift?
      • Who reports receiving a food gift?
    • To give and to receive
      • Table Food Gifts: Percent/Population Who Purchase Any for Self, Purchase Any for Others & Receive Any, Personal and Business from Others, 2014
    • The gift givers
      • Table Food Gifts: Percent Who Purchase For Self, Purchase For Others & Receive From Others, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • For whom do consumers buy food gifts?
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Recipients, by Type of Family Member & Non-Family Person, 2014
      • 2010-2014 trending
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Recipients, by Type of Family Member & Non-Family Person, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Age and household income analysis
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Recipients, by Type of Family Member & Non-Family Person, by Age and HH Income, 2014
      • Race/ethnicity, region and population density analysis
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Recipients, by Type of Family Member & Non-Family Person, by Race/Ethnicity, Region & Population Density, 2014
      • To how many people do consumers give food gifts?
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Number of Recipients in Past 12 Months, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Demographic analysis
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Number of Recipients in Past 12 Months, by Selected Demographics, 2014
      • How much do consumers spend per food gift?
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Amount Spent per Gift, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Demographic analysis
        • Table Food Gift Purchasers: Amount Spent per Gift, by Selected Demographics, 2014
    • The gift getters
      • Table Food Gift Recipients, by Selected Demographics, 2014
      • Gift getters, by food gifting occasion
        • Table Food Gift Recipients, by Winter Holidays, Birthday & Valentine's Day Food Gifting Occasions: Selected Demographics, 2014
        • Table Food Gift Recipients, by Anniversary, Mother's Day & Thanksgiving Food Gifting Occasions: Selected Demographics, 2014
        • Table Food Gift Recipients, by Easter, Host/Hostess & Housewarming Food Gifting Occasions: Selected Demographics, 2014
        • Table Food Gift Recipients, by Halloween & Father's Day Food Gifting Occasions: Selected Demographics, 2014
  • Types of Food Gifts Purchased & Purchase Occasions
    • Summary analysis
      • Types of food gifts people purchase
      • Types of food gifts people purchase for self
      • Food gift purchase occasions
    • Types of food gifts purchased
      • Types of food gifts people purchase for others
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others, 2014
      • But 2010-2014 purchase incidence declines across less penetrated categories
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Gender analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others, by Gender, 2014
      • HH income analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others, by HH Income, 2014
      • Regional analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Others, by Region, 2014
      • Types of food gifts people purchase for themselves
      • Mixing sweet indulgence with everyday use
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self, 2014
      • 2010-2014 trending
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Gender analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self, by Gender, 2014
      • HH income analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self, by HH Income, 2014
      • Regional analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Purchased for Self, by Region, 2014
    • Food gift purchase occasions
      • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, 2014
      • 2010-2014 trending
        • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Gender analysis
        • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, by Gender, 2014
      • Age analysis
        • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, by Age, 2014
      • HH income analysis
        • Table Occasions for Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, by HH Income, 2014
  • Reasons for Buying and Not Buying Food Gifts
    • Summary analysis
      • Reasons for buying food gifts
      • Attributes sought in specialty food gifts
      • Reasons for not buying food gifts
    • Reasons for buying food gifts
      • Gift enjoyment
      • Knowing the recipient
      • Something special
      • But something useful
      • And some thing they want
      • Convenience and value round out the purchase
      • It's not about the money. Really.
      • 2010-2014 trends
      • Convenience
      • Perceived need
        • Table Reasons for Purchasing Food Gifts, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Gender analysis
        • Table Reasons for Purchasing Food Gifts, by Gender, 2014
      • Age analysis
        • Table Reasons for Purchasing Food Gifts, by Age, 2014
      • HH income analysis
        • Table Reasons for Purchasing Food Gifts, by HH Income, 2014
      • Race/ethnicity analysis
        • Table Reasons for Purchasing Food Gifts, by Race/Ethnicity, 2014
    • Attributes sought in specialty food gifts
      • Quality rules the roost
      • From a trusted source
      • Appearance matters
      • Product variety, distinctiveness & special meaning
      • Good value
        • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Gender analysis
        • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, by Gender, 2014
      • Age analysis
        • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, by Age, 2014
      • HH income analysis
        • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, by HH Income, 2014
      • Race/ethnicity analysis
        • Table Attributes Sought When Purchasing Specialty Food Gifts, by Race/Ethnicity, 2014
    • Reasons for not buying food gifts
      • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Gender analysis
        • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts, by Gender, 2014
      • Age analysis
        • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts, by Age, 2014
      • HH income analysis
        • Table Reasons for Not Buying Food Gifts, by HH Income, 2014
  • Food Gifting Retail Distribution
    • Summary analysis
      • Online, phone and mail ordering trends
      • Specialty food gift purchase locations used in past 12 months
    • Online, phone and mail ordering trends
      • Online channel gains significance
        • Table Percent of Adults Who Ordered Online & by Mail/Phone in Last 12 Months: Any Product, 2007-2013; Gourmet Gift Basket/Assortment, 2011-2013
      • Demographic analysis
        • Table Percent of Adults Who Ordered Gourmet Gift Basket/Assortment via Online/Mail/Phone in Last 12 Months, by Demographic, 2013
      • Amazon, Walmart and gifting specialist retailers
        • Table Adults Who Ordered Online/Phone/Mail in Last Three Months: Any Product, Online vs. Phone/Mail; Any Product, By Retailer; Flowers vs. Gourmet Gift Basket/Assortment, 2013
    • Specialty food gift purchase locations used in past 12 months
      • Online-only growth
        • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations Used in Past 12 Months, 2010, 2012 & 2014
      • Walmart is a go-to choice
        • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations Used in Past 12 Months, Used Most & Used Most/Used Past 12 Months Ratio, 2014
      • Food gifts bring men into the stores
        • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations Used in Past 12 Months & Used Most, by Gender, 2014
      • Age analysis
        • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations Used in Past 12 Months & Used Most, by Age, 2014
      • HH income
        • Table Specialty Food Gift Purchase Locations Used in Past 12 Months & Used Most, by HH Income, 2014
  • Corporate Food Gifting
    • Summary analysis
      • Personal versus business food gifts, by gift type
      • Personal versus business food gifts, by gift occasion
    • Types of food gifts received in connection with employment
      • Personal versus business food gifts, by type of gift
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Received: Personal Receipt vs. Business Receipt, 2014
      • Taking it further
      • Demographic analysis
      • Gender analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Received as Business Gift, by Gender, 2014
      • Age analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Received as Business Gift, by Age, 2014
      • HH income analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Received as Business Gift, by HH Income, 2014
      • Regional analysis
        • Table Types of Food Gifts Received as Business Gift, by Region, 2014
      • Personal versus business food gifts, by gift occasion
      • Food gifts received in connection with employment, by occasion
        • Table Percent of Business Food Gift Recipients Receiving Food Gift, by Occasion, 2014
      • Demographic analysis
        • Table Percent of Business Food Gift Recipients Receiving Food Gift, by Occasion: Gender & Age, 2014
        • Table Percent of Business Food Gift Recipients Receiving Food Gift, by Occasion: HH Income, 2014
  • Food Gifting: Product Innovation
    • Summary analysis
      • Key points
      • Familiar favorites in seasonal form and packaging
      • Food gift innovation for target demographics
      • Licensing agreements expand gift-giving opportunities for food gifts
      • Quality differentiators continue to influence food gift innovation
      • Private label marketers compete for share of food gift market
      • DIY food gift kits
  • Gift Box and Seasonal Chocolate: Sales Analysis
    • Summary analysis
    • Chocolate candy sales exceed $8.6 billion
      • Table Sales of Gift Box Chocolate; and Christmas, Valentine's Day & Easter Seasonal Chocolate, 2013
      • Gift box chocolate
      • Russell Stover is the undisputed leader in gift box sales
      • But Ferrero gains, thanks to innovative marketing
        • Table Top Gift Box Chocolate Marketers, by Marketer and Brand, 2013
      • Seasonal Christmas chocolate
      • Hershey dominates seasonal Christmas chocolate
        • Table Top Seasonal Christmas Chocolate Marketers, by Marketer and Brand, 2013
      • Seasonal Valentine's Day chocolate
      • Russell Stover grows share
        • Table Top Seasonal Valentine's Day Chocolate Marketers, by Marketer and Brand, 2014
      • Seasonal Easter chocolate
      • Lindt & Sprungli grows sales
        • Table Top Seasonal Easter Chocolate Marketers, by Marketer and Brand, 2013
  • Food Gifting Companies and Brands
    • Summary analysis
      • Chocolate specialists
      • Bakery food specialists
      • Salty food specialist
      • Fruit specialist
      • Savory food specialist
      • Gourmet food specialists
      • Floral specialists
      • FTD Companies, Inc.
    • Chocolate specialists
      • Russell Stover Candies
      • Website traffic trends points to seasonal relevance
      • Brand positioning
      • Marketing strategies
      • Lindt & Sprungli AG
      • Brand positioning
      • Marketing strategies
      • Godiva
      • Brand positioning-Exclusive luxury
      • Marketing strategies
    • Bakery food specialists
      • Cookies by Design
      • Brand positioning-personalized gift giving
      • Marketing strategies
      • Nothing Bundt Cakes
      • Brand positioning-simple, niche concept
      • Marketing strategies
    • Salty food specialist
      • Popcornopolis
      • Brand positioning-focus on flavor
      • Marketing strategies
    • Fruit specialist
      • Edible Arrangements
      • Brand positioning-inventive and fun
      • Marketing strategies
    • Savory food specialist
      • Hickory Farms
      • Brand positioning-it's a tradition
      • Marketing strategies
    • Gourmet food specialists
      • Harry and David Holdings, Inc.
      • Company performance
      • Brand positioning-gourmet food expert from "the ground up"
      • Marketing strategies
      • Dean & DeLuca
      • Brand positioning-culinary trend authority
      • Marketing strategies
    • Floral specialists
      • 1-800-FLOWERS.COM
      • Company performance
        • Table 1-800-FLOWERS.COM Net Revenue Sales and Share, by Segment, 2009-2013
        • Table 1-800-FLOWERS.COM Net Revenue, E-Commerce Revenue & E-Commerce Order Trends, 2009-2013
      • Brand positioning-one stop gift shop
      • Marketing strategies
      • FTD Companies, Inc.
      • Company performance
        • Table FTD Sales and Share by Segment, Consumer Orders & Florist Revenues per Member, 2009-2013
      • Brand positioning-a network of suppliers
      • Marketing strategies leverage partnerships with lifestyle brands
        • Table FTD Partnerships, 2013
  • Appendix
    • Methodology
      • Consumer survey methodology
      • Food gift purchasers
      • Food gift recipients
      • Market size and forecast
      • Product Definitions
      • Types of Food Gifts

Download our eBook: How to Succeed Using Market Research

Learn how to effectively navigate the market research process to help guide your organization on the journey to success.

Download eBook

Share this report