As consumers prepare to celebrate the Jewish festival of Passover (April 9 – 15) and the Christian Easter holiday (April 12), high retail sales are expected for items traditional to the holiday celebrations and the Passover Seder, the ritual dinners held on the first two nights of Passover, according to (pdf) The Nielsen Company.
Fast facts about food sales during the spring holidays:
- Consumers are expected to buy more than 120 million pounds – or nearly $500 million – in candy during the week leading up to Easter. Nielsen‘s research shows that consumers are sweeter on chocolate candy, with approximately 70% of US candy dollars spent on chocolate during Easter week.
- Nearly 71 million pounds of chocolate candy is sold during the week leading up to Easter. By comparison, only 48 million pounds of chocolate candy is sold during Valentine’s week. Halloween sees the most chocolate candy sales, with nearly 90 million pounds of chocolate candy sold in the last week of October.
- More than 61 million dozen eggs are sold during the week leading up to Easter. Easter week is the top egg selling week of the year with sales 45% above average weekly sales. Easter Saturday (April 11) is the top buying day of the year for fresh eggs, followed by Good Friday (April 10).
- Consumers are expected to spend more than $3.5 million on matzo (unleavened bread), during the week leading up to Passover. The week leading up to the holiday is the highest sales week for matzo and matzo meal/mixes, with more than $1.2 million in sales expected.
- Nearly 1.5 million bottles, or $ 6.5 million in sales of kosher table wine, a traditional part of the Passover Seder, will be sold during the four weeks leading up to Passover, representing approximately 13% of the total year’s sales of kosher wines. About 65% of that amount will be sold during the two week period just before and during the Passover holiday.
Notes: All Easter dollar figures represent sales in US food, drug and mass merchandiser stores, including Wal-mart, for the week ending 3/22/08; Matzo and matzo meal/mixes data based on sales in US food, drug and mass merchandiser stores, including Walmart, for the week ending 4/19/08; Kosher wine sales figures on sales in US food, drug and major market liquor stores for the four weeks ending 4/26/08.