During the Financial Symposium that kicked off the National Grocers Association’s 2023 Show in Las Vegas, NV, David Schoeder, partner at The Food Partners, discussed the future of grocery growth, post-pandemic challenges, the proposed Kroger and Albertsons merger and more.
Schoeder is one of several partners at The Food Partners, an investment banking firm to the food industry that provides merger, acquisition, divestiture services and more. In his presentation, he pointed to several challenges that the grocery industry should be bracing for in 2023 and beyond, including the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine and persistent high inflation that many in the industry have been accustomed to. Other factors include consumers eating away from home more, and SNAP benefits for low-income families slated to expire in the coming days.
“I’m not one of the people that think the Feds are going to get inflation under control,” Schoeder said. “We have inflation because of so much product not being available, not because people are buying too much. I think we’re gonna have more inflation. The potential of going into a recession if that is true is far greater. We have these material supply chain issues… that I don’t think goes away.”
Schoeder discussed the “winners and losers” of inflation as well, urging independent and small grocers to offer unique services that keep customers coming back despite potentially lower prices elsewhere at chains like Walmart and Aldi.