In a recent interview with Bloomberg, Walmart U.S. chief executive John Furner claims that the company has seen “a slight change” in food purchasing habits of people taking Ozempic and other weight loss drugs as compared to those who aren’t.
“We definitely do see a slight change compared to the total population, we do see a slight pullback in overall basket,” said Walmart CEO John Furner in an interview Wednesday. “Just less units, slightly less calories.”
Walmart is studying changes in sales patterns by looking at anonymous shopper data and comparing shopping habits of people who take a weight loss drug like Ozempic to people who don’t, Bloomberg reported.
Drugs like Ozempic are only expected to continue to rise in popularity. Morgan Stanley estimates that the number of patients taking GLP-1 drugs could reach 24 million, some 7% of the U.S. population, by 2035.
In its September report, Morgan Stanley said that if the drug does continue to rise, consumption of baked goods and salty snacks could fall 3% — or even more if the new eating habits of the people using the treatments extend to their broader households and extended circles.
That puts CPG companies like Hershey, Mondelez, PepsiCo, General Mills, and Kellogg’s successor Kellanova at risk. Additionally, Morgan Stanley said the popularity of the drugs would likely have a stronger impact on grocery stores, while big box markets like Walmart and Target that sell “many product categories along with food will be better insulated.”
Walmart had not responded to a request for comment in time for publication of this story.
Drugs like Ozempic are only expected to continue to rise in popularity. Is this going to become an issue for overall basket size? Let us know in the comments below, or email your thoughts to the SN staff at [email protected]. Be sure to include your full name and work title for publication.