How Tyson is rethinking the online shopping experience for fresh meat


Jennifer Fitting, Opinion, FoodDive

April 5, 2021


Benjamin Franklin once said, "When you're finished changing, you're finished." These are wise words to live by in the business world. Companies that fail to innovate and bring new services or products to customers and consumers can be quickly overtaken by competitors who do. And in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the necessity for companies to adapt, and to do so quickly, has become even more urgent, particularly in the food and beverage industry.


Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers by and large purchased food and grocery items in-store and in-person. But COVID-19 changed that and pushed fast-forward on consumers' use of e-commerce to buy food to put on their tables. According to a report published late last year by Mercatus, 43% of consumers shopped online for their groceries between March and August 2020 compared to just 24% in 2018. Similar to the industry, Tyson Foods experienced this growth in e-commerce as well, with sales up 89% October through December 2020 compared with last year.


Food manufacturers are stepping up to adapt to this "new normal." While leveraging technology that enables them to participate in the growth of e-commerce is essential, it should not end there. Manufacturers need to dig deeper into how people shop via e-commerce and utilize technologies that can improve the online shopping experience for consumers while adding value throughout the retail grocery supply chain.


Tyson Foods is taking this approach as we continue to grow our presence in e-commerce. As a protein supplier to the majority of grocery retailers across the U.S., Tyson Foods provides both consumer packaged goods and fresh meats for consumers to purchase. This is where the surge in online grocery shopping has presented a unique challenge...