Retailers, restaurants expecting banner week due to Lent, Valentine’s Day

Maggiano's seafood offerings.

U.S. retailers and restaurateurs are expecting high upcoming seafood sales as the 40-day Lenten season kicks off the same day as Valentine’s Day on 14 February.

“There is normally a bump for seafood on Valentine’s Day, but with Lent on top of that, it should be a banner week for seafood,” Jason Resner, the meat and seafood sales, merchandising, and procurement lead for Downers Grove, Illinois, U.S.A.-based retailer Fresh Thyme, told SeafoodSource.

Fresh Thyme, a retailer with approximately 75 locations primarily in the U.S. Midwest, is among several retailers offering mid-February deals. The retailer is promoting snow crab clusters for USD 5.99 (EUR 5.57) a pound, colossal 6/9 count king crab legs for USD 32.99 (EUR 30.59) per pound, buy-one-get-one (BOGO) free cooked shrimp rings, and other seafood specials as both holidays get underway.

Greensboro, North Carolina, U.S.A.-based The Fresh Market, meanwhile, is offering a Valentine’s deal designed for couples that includes a choice of any two options between chateaubriand filet mignon, ultimate lump crab cakes, or wild North Atlantic lobster tail for USD 59.99 (EUR 55.70). The retailer is also offering BOGO heart-shaped crab cakes for a limited time.

Lakeland, Florida, U.S.A.-based Publix, which has been running weekly seafood promotions at “aggressive price points,” Seafood Director Guy Pizzuti told SeafoodSource, is featuring items for Valentine’s Day including lobster tails, crab, and cooked shrimp.

Publix’s current marketing efforts tout a “romantic dinner for two,” featuring tenderloin steak for USD 26.99 (EUR 25.03) per pound paired with a 3-ounce lobster tail for USD 6.99 (EUR 6.50). It is also offering BOGO cooked shrimp platters.

Overall Valentine’s Day spending in the U.S. is expected to reach a record USD 14.2 billion (EUR 13.2 billion) in 2024, according to an annual survey conducted by the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Prosper Insights and Analytics. Consumers expect to spend USD 185.81 (EUR 172.35) each on average, nearly USD 8.00 (EUR 7.42) more than average Valentine’s Day spending over the last five years, the NRF said in a press release.

To take advantage of the increase in Valentine’s Day spending, many restaurant chains are ... 

Photo courtesy of Maggiano’s Little Italy

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