Prediction: Traditional chains continue to outpace Wal-Mart
Prediction: Multicultural offerings become a differentiator
Prediction: Growth in small formats
Reality: Everyone from Publix to Martin’s to Target has been working on small format stores this year.
Verdict: “Growth” might be an understatement.
Prediction: Hospitals team with retail dietitians
Reality: Although the partnerships haven’t necessarily centered on retail dietitians, supermarkets have been working more with healthcare organizations. For example, Ralphs teamed with St. Joseph Hoag Health for “Shop with Your Doc” tours. Retailers also sometimes brought their services to the hospitals, such as this ShopRite pharmacy inside a hospital.
Verdict: Slightly off in scope, but on target for the general trend.
Prediction: Food deserts breed innovation
Reality: There were traditional supermarket openings in food deserts this year, but innovative concepts have not been widespread. There’s been no recent news on The Daily Table, a salvage grocery concept from ex-Trader Joe’s president Doug Rauch. Although Whole Foods broke ground last summer on a store in the Englewood neighborhood of Chicago, a food desert that’s an even more unlikely site than its Detroit store, the store won’t open until 2016.
Verdict: The real innovation may come in 2015 and 2016.