Consumer Insights: Improving shopper engagement with the meat aisle

It’s paramount that the in-store environment for meat is improved. The category is hugely valuable, accounting for 14% of grocery spend, and is purchased by 99% of households in Britain (Kantar).

Despite the booming online market in recent years, physical stores still account for 87% of meat and poultry sales. However, previous research from AHDB has highlighted a real challenge with the in-store environment, with only a small proportion of shoppers actually enjoying shopping in the meat aisle.

Therefore, AHDB commissioned research to establish how this could be executed. Conducted by Linney in the first half of 2021, the research streamlined a range of ideas generated in partnership with the industry to develop virtual reality concept aisles.

Key findings

● The theme of inspiration is a standout in attracting people into the aisle. Utilise this to get shoppers thinking about their meal rather than the product

● At shelf, use a range of messaging themes to reassure shoppers of concerns regarding farming and health. Statements highlighting British farming expertise appeal

● Health has a role to play on pack, acting as that final reassurance. Vitamin B12 should be the hero, supported by broader health messaging

● In store, shoppers navigate the meat aisle by product, assessing product quality and reiterating the importance of taste and appearance. Packaging design should be elevated without compromising the visibility of the product itself

● Utilise point of sale (POS) that disrupts at the point of purchase, with space savers and large shelf strips holding strong appeal. Aisle fins have an important role to play to attract people into the aisle

● These findings hold universal appeal, regardless of where shoppers usually buy their meat – supermarket, discounter, premium or convenience

The Hierarchy

When it comes to changing perceptions of the meat aisle, there is no silver bullet. At different moments in time throughout the path to purchase, a mix of communication messages is necessary to help address the various concerns shoppers have, when it comes to red meat. This will reassure people at their moment of purchase and also support longer-term perceptions of the category.

There are three key milestones in this path to purchase:
• Attracting shoppers to the aisle
• Engaging them with the red meat fixture
• Converting them to purchase


Our research showed that for each of these moments in the path to purchase, there is
a leading communication route for each of them.

Download the report

Key Graphics

Image of staff member Kim Heath

Kim Heath

Senior Retail Insight Manager

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Image of staff member Rebecca Gladman

Rebecca Gladman

Retail Insight Manager

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Image of staff member Grace Randall

Grace Randall

Retail Insight Manager

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