04 February 2022, 07:00 AM
  • Italian cuisine is perfectly suited to ambitious home chefs or beginners in the kitchen – and fine food shops can boost loyalty by showing all their customers what artisan Italian food and drink products have to offer
Master the Italian upsell in 2022

It’s the time of year for resolutions and goal-setting sessions, and for diets and healthy eating pledges. When consumers swear off chocolate and indulgences and vow to eat their vegetables, cut down on takeaways and cook meals at home. Out, once again, come the bulky bags of dried pasta and the jars of rich ragu. As a simple, flavourful dish, it’s hard to think of a better option. 

Maybe your customers are some of the many UK consumers who pushed the boat out with a pizza oven this year, or they could be experimenting in making their own pasta? These new-to-them recipes are easy to indulge in January as there are so many recipes which suit the annual health-kick. Waitrose’s 2022 Food & Drink report sung the praises of tinned fish as sales of mackerel and anchovies both jumped 17% over the last year, while tuna sales shot up 500% during the first half of 2020, thanks to the product’s versatility and simplicity – just pop open and pop in your pasta. 

With many consumers feeling the bite of price inflation, it’s time to shout about the benefits of authentic Italian products. Despite price pressures, consumers have still shown an inclination to support small businesses and upgrade their purchases where they can – for instance, forking out on the flavour of Italy through brands like Mutti. 

The proof is in the pudding – or pasta. Explain clearly what makes a product like artisan olive oil so special, offer a taste with a hunk of freshly baked bread, and your customers will be coming back for more. Retailers can also sing the praises of superfood-rich Mediterranean diets, which are shown to reduce the risk of developing conditions like high blood pressure and cholesterol as well as heart disease. Showing customers that healthy eating doesn’t have to be flavourless will go down a treat this time of year. Explain just how easy it is to turn an Italian dish vegan and you’ll win the favour of Veganuary followers, too.

Italian cuisine is endlessly flexible and whatever the season or reason, consumers will keep coming back to their favourites. By showing them why fine food shop products stand head and shoulders above anything they could find at a supermarket, retailers will win loyal customers for 2022.

Are you passionate about Italian food and drink? Get in touch via courtney.goldsmith@aceville.co.uk.