Posted: Feb 04, 2017
Super Bowl LI is not the regional attraction of, say, a Bears v.s Colts matchup, but the snack rush is on for beer, chips, dip, chili, deli trays and football-shaped cookies ahead of Sunday's showdown between the Atlanta Falcons and New England Patriots.
The National Retail Federation estimates consumers will spend $14.1 billion on Super Bowl activities this weekend. Nearly 80 percent of the spending will be on food and beverages, according to the annual survey. This year's spending is projected to be down from the record $15.5 billion spent for the 2016 contest between the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers.
"We're stocking for an increase in sales this weekend," said Dan Rebbe, assistant manager at Friar Tuck in Springfield.
Beer is the big seller for Super Bowl weekend, though wine and snacks are also in demand, said Rebbe. Matchups and fan interest in big sporting events do affect sales, said Rebbe, who offered the 2016 World Series as an example.
"It definitely increased when the Cubs were in the World Series," said Rebbe. "We sold a lot more Old Style beer than we normally would."
Old Style was the traditional beer of Wrigley Field, though it's no longer sold there. Anheuser-Busch became the exclusive sponsor of Wrigley beer sales in 2014.
Sales of chili, a Super Bowl staple, also pick up a few days before the big game, said Kenny Micheletta, chief of operations for Dew Chili Parlor in Springfield. Carry-out sales account for much of the increase, he added.
"We have a lot of people picking it up to take home for parties," said Micheletta.
While there had been no requests as of early Friday for Patriot or Falcons cakes at Specialty Cakes, assistant manager Jessica Mathis said batches of football-shaped cookies were readied earlier in the week.
"They require a two-day drying time for icing," said Mathis. "We've been selling some this week."
Mathis said February is a relatively slow month in the bakery business, despite the Super Bowl and Valentine's Day, when compared with the big cake, pie and dessert holidays: Christmas and Thanksgiving.
The holiday sales trend is reflected in month-by-month city sales tax collections, according to figures from the Illinois Department of Revenue. Sales tax collections in February 2016 -- paid to the city in May because of a three-month distribution lag time from the state -- totaled $5.1 million. By comparison, the March 2016 distribution from Christmas sales the prior December totaled nearly $7.6 million.
The National Retail Federation estimates U.S. consumers will spend $14.1 billion on the Super Bowl LI celebration this weekend. Here's a breakdown of spending by categories.
* Food and beverages: 79.5 percent.
* Team apparel-accessories: 10.7 percent.
* Decorations: 7.7 percent.
* Televisions: 7.7 percent.
* Furniture/entertainment centers: 3.3 percent.
By Tim Landis
Posted Feb 3, 2017 at 4:45 PM
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