Mintel in the Media – this week's highlights

June 1, 2012
6 min read

Just like the Queen, we had our own reason to celebrate this week…40 glorious years in the market research industry.

In celebration of our great heritage, Mintel re-ran its first ever consumer research and published the results to the media. The research was fascinating and not only captured the imagination of the UK press, but also further afield in India and Australia.

The research was packed with trends from the changing face of Britain’s breakfast habits and the sinking popularity of fish and chips to the demise of some of Britain’s best-loved past times. The media focused on a wide variety of findings, including the decline in popularity of marmalade in the Daily Mail which talked about how the proportion of families who dollop the orange spread on their morning toast is down from 36 per cent 40 years ago to just 7 per cent today. The figures show marmalade giving way to US-style imports such as chocolate spreads and peanut butter.

Next, the changing breakfast habits were the focus of attention in two articles in The Sun titled “Brits fry to be healthy” and “English fry up will never be toast.” The Scotsman also focused on the decline of the fry up in “Britain’s greasy fry-ups for breakfast slide into oblivion.” The great British fry-up was also the choice of story in AOL Money and Britain New.

The decline in popularity of fish & chips proved to be a real winner in the Mirror, as well as the dramatic fall of the once loved ‘wish you were here’ postcard. Quoting Mintel’s Alexandra Richmond: “Younger Britons may never have experienced the joy of receiving a postcard in the age of social media and many others may have forgotten the sensory experience a writing set gives the sender. We’re travelling more and we’re also more connected than ever before. It’s easier to tweet a picture, update our Facebook status or send a text, enabling real-time holiday updates rather than waiting a few weeks for a postcard.” Fish and chips were also a hit in India in and New Kerala and in Australia in Food Stuff Australia and Yahoo in the Philippines.  While the decline in popularity of postcards caught the imagination of NewtrackIndia, food and beer were the focus of Big Hospitality.  Finally, Food MANUFACTURE led with the 40th birthday celebrations in the days publications in “Mintel hails Queen’s jubilee with 40-year food survey.”

Another huge story for the week was our over-55s research. The week started with a fantastic piece in The Telegraph which talked about how only one in three pensioners stop work at retirement age. Figures from Mintel found that only three in ten pensioners retired when they reached state pension age over the year to February 2012. This is down from 48 per cent of people the previous year. One in eight people said that they had retired because they could afford to last year, Mintel found. “Historically low interest rates on savings and the resulting lower than expected return on pensions had a large influence on retirement decisions,” said Mintel in its Lifestyles of the Over-55s report. Around 650,000 people retire each year in the UK, however Mintel’s findings are likely to mean that this number is falling. Steve Webb, the Pensions Minister, said that Mintel’s findings demonstrate how important the introduction of automatic workplace pensions will be later this year.

Meanwhile our Mens Fashion Lifestyles research was featured in the Mirror. Market research firm Mintel says supermarket clothes are becoming more and more popular, with 50 per cent of male customers buying them, up 12 per cent in just a year. Mintel found that middle-aged men are especially attracted to their low prices and the convenience of getting clothes on the weekly shop.

Our bicycles press release continues to attract media attention, this time in London 24  in bicycles ‘preferred to sports cars’ by London’s upwardly mobile men. Research carried out by analysts Mintel found that wealthier men who are yet to marry and settle down are helping boost sales along with the retired who are interested in the new generation of electric models.

Our own label press goes from strength to strength. This week it was featured in the International Business Times and Business & Leadership both of which quoted Mintel’s Chris Wisson who has been busy fueling media demand by doing  interviews on a daily basis over the past fortnight. The research was also featured in World Advertising Research Centre.

Mintel’s garden products research was highlighted on BBC Radio 4 at the end of a glorious week of sun and flowers. Farming Today This Week told listeners how Mintel has found Britons spend £5m per year on garden products, compared with £3.5bn on chocolate.

We ended the week in the UK with some great coverage in this is london which extensively quoted our grooming research in Brad Pitt and the age of the Middle Man.

Over in Europe, in Spain Men’s Health used our Gym resarch while in France La Grande Epoque extensively quoted our research on preferred payment methods by British consumers.

And over in the Chicago press office, Food Navigator USA used our ethnic food figures for a story about the importance of authenticity when it comes to consumer usage of Mexican food products at home.

Also of note, Inc. Magazine referenced our 2012 Dining Out: A Look Ahead report for a piece about business opportunities in full-service restaurants. As our report pointed out, 12% of Americans plan to spend more at restaurants this year compared to 2011.

Other great foodservice coverage appeared in a MediaPost Marketing Daily article. The publication covered last week’s press release that discussed the popularity of chicken on restaurant menus. Kathy Hayden, foodservice analyst at Mintel was quoted as saying “steakhouses have been struggling in this rough economy and have tried to compensate by offering smaller cuts or more surf and turf options, but ultimately, chicken menu innovation is giving restaurant-goers a fresh and less expensive option while dining out.”

Next up, The Boston Globe highlighted some of our baby durables data (77% of parents with children four and under own more than one stroller, 8% own more than four!) for a story about a new stroller developed by college students and Natural Foods Merchandiser used our insight into the kids’ personal care products industry for a special market overview of the personal care category.

Closing out the week, MSNBC used some consumer data from our Attitudes Toward Beverage Sweeteners report for a piece about the proposed ban on large-size sugary beverages in NYC while the Daily Record sought out our insight into the non-chocolate confectionary market for a profile of a gourmet candy apple shop. Finally, Grocery Headquarters used our Shaving and Hair Removal report to discuss innovation and product development in the $2.1 billion industry. 

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