Ambient food is worth pound;792m

Sales to the foodservice and hospitality sector via UK cash and carries are worth pound;2.2bn and account for 16% of the total foodservice supply route, according to Garth Morris, general merchandising manager – food and sundries of Costco Wholesale UK.

He said ambient food is the largest category in cash and carry at pound;792m and equals 36% value share, followed by chilled at 19% and frozen at 4%.

“Smaller operators, including cafes, small restaurant, hotels, and ‘on the go’ caterers such as mobile operators, rely on cash and carries as their primary avenue of supply. Large foodservice operators typically use cash and carry as a secondary supply source.”

Morris added, pound;750m of lost sales occurs in cash and carry due to stock availability issues each year. “A recent HIM survey reported 33% of customers said they had failed to buy a particular product requirement, with 85% blaming this on out-of-stocks or inability to find product.”

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