US kosher food market valued at $10 billion

US kosher food consumers spend $1,000 more a year on groceries.

kosher food 88 (photo credit: )
kosher food 88
(photo credit: )
The dollar value of the American kosher food market is some $10 billion, and the dollar value of kosher goods produced in the USA is $175b, according to a major kosher food survey conducted by Cannondale Associates. The survey, presented last week at the 18th annual Kosherfest trade show in New York City, charted the consumer behavior of 10 million households over a period of five years. The survey found there are 10.5 million kosher food consumers in the US, 70 percent of whom are aged 18 to 35. A minority - 21% - of Americans who buy kosher foods do so for religious reasons. Non-Jews who buy kosher food products tend to do so because they think "kosher" is synonymous with "healthy." A Cannondale official said that consumers wanted more new kosher products that they could find easily, and "surprisingly...were not driven by deep discounts." Menachem Lubinsky, founder of Kosherfest and CEO of LUBICOM Marketing, said that retailers across the US were paying close attention to the Cannondale study, "especially the implication that kosher sales would be unaffected if there were no deep discounting." Lubinsky also noted that the popularity of kosher cookbooks underscores the study's point that manufacturers and retailers need to help guide consumers on better use of kosher food products. According to an annual survey of kosher food companies conducted by LUBICOM Marketing, kosher firms are seeing yearly growth of 10-15%. "While last year's growth was due to an increase in wines, cheeses, and sauces, snack foods and frozen food options are currently hot items in the kosher food industry, as are new wines from Israel," said Lubinsky. Rabbi Moshe Elephant, Executive Rabbi and COO of the Orthodox Union, agreed. "Across the board, the new popular kosher items are snacks, cakes and new wines - expensive wines from around the world, not just from established wineries," said Elephant. Elephant also pointed to a trend toward other kosher liquor, such as Absolut Vodka, which recently sought kosher certification. There is also a demand for kosher exotic cheeses, more kosher products from China, Eastern Europe, and the former Soviet Union, and pre-washed vegetables.