The Rebirth of Home Country Produce in Fresh Food

October 2020

This report highlights global trends impacting fresh food, with a focus on home country consumption and factors influencing this. It details threats to the consumption of home country produce, as well as areas of opportunities for businesses to address the changing retail environment over the forecast period.

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Key findings

Eating local to boost the local economy

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has resulted in a global recession, forcing countries to focus on their own economies in order to stimulate growth. Consuming local fresh produce helps provide employment opportunities and has the potential to boost income for local agriculture and small-scale commercial farmers.

Embracing local heritage boosts growth of locally-produced produce

In times of uncertainty and the stress of busy lives, consumers seek the comfort of the familiar. Food that reminds them of home is seeing increased popularity. Consumers are also turning back to locally sourced food and native ingredients as a source of identity. This includes indigenous inputs, home-grown food and country of origin claims.

Fewer farm-to-fork miles reduces environmental impact

There is a growing focus on sustainability, whereby consumers choose fresh produce based on the lower environmental impact in an attempt to “save the planet”. Imported produce has higher food miles, which is a good benchmark from which to calculate carbon footprint and environmental impact, resulting in a shift to local.

Food safety a priority during the global pandemic

There is a growing desire amongst consumers to know and trust where their food comes from. The current pandemic and its origin, which is thought to be Asian wet markets, has reinforced consumers’ desire for “safe” food. Because different countries have different policies and ideas of what is considered safe, local produce is preferred and perceived as “safer” in many countries.

Supply chain disruptions lead to increased reliance on local produce

The availability of fresh produce is heavily reliant on an efficient supply chain. Closed borders, import/export delays, inclement weather and local unrest are all issues that impact fresh produce availability, and result in an increased reliance on local produce as consumers and retailers look for ways to keep shelves stocked.


Key findings

The Rise of Local Produce

Desire for unprocessed foods contributes to growth of fresh produce
Eating local produce supports the local economy
Embracing local heritage requires local production to meet demand
Farmers adapt their planting to provide high demand crops
Fewer farm-to-fork miles reduces environmental impact
Pandemic refocuses business priorities for sustainability
Case Study: SinGrow, Singapore
Food safety: trusting where your produce comes from
Case study: smart Food Monitoring, USA
Supply chain transparency more important in a post-COVID-19 world
Case study: Ninjacart, India

Threats to Home Country Produce

Threats to the rebirth of home country produce

Areas of Opportunity

Rise in online shopping anticipated to continue post-COVID-19
Accessibility: bringing fresh produce direct to consumers
More direct-to-consumer business models
Case study: Northern Valleys Locavore Store, Australia
Meat kits contribute to the rebirth of home country produce
Drive-thru models dedicated to locally produced fresh food
Takeaways: alternative business models to propel fresh home produce


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