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Shoppers Start Your Engines

If you've noticed more cars on the road lately it may have something to do with the additional food shopping trips that consumers are taking in search of value. The numbers, according to Dr. Romesh Wadhwani, chairman of Symphony IRI Group (called IRI until its official name change this morning), represent a 6% increase over last year and a $10 million incremental revenue opportunity for retailers who capture just 1% of the trips.

Wadhwani projects the trend to play out through the remainder of the year, as shoppers have nearly doubled the number of stores they visit each month to as many as 10. Today's shoppers are on a very specific mission and they come armed with lists. Twelve months ago IRI found that about half of shoppers made generic category lists before heading out to the store, but today more than eight in ten are making brand-specific lists in advance.

One area where they're not as value conscious is health and wellness. The folks at PepsiCo seem to have taken note. Yesterday CEO Indra Nooyi announced plans to grow revenues from its good-for-you products from $10 billion to $30 billion over the next ten years.