Ready-to-eat microwave popcorn sales are soaring while movie theater popcorn sales decline.
Remember the days when you could enjoy a great date night at a movie theater, snuggled up with your significant other? After spending an arm and a leg on 3D movie tickets with reclining seats, you most likely shared a tub of buttery, delicious movie theater popcorn. Let’s face it—it's really hard to recreate that taste at home. But, unfortunately, as movie theaters continue to permanently shut their doors due to the pandemic, the farmers of our favorite movie theater snack are having a hard time making a profit.
Recent reporting shows that these farmers are left with an excess of unsold popcorn kernels while ready-to-eat microwave popcorn sales have soared as more people are watching movies at home. Household brands such as Jolly Time, Pop Secret, and Orville Redenbacher have seen sale surges in the double-digits.
Farmers have tried to pivot selling directly to consumers: “We work with Preferred to repack the giant bags into 28-ounce household bags, branded with Preferred Popcorn as a way to get recognized by consumers,” said one popcorn farmer. Preferred Popcorn is one of America’s biggest suppliers of movie theater popcorn and was founded over 20 years ago by a group of Nebraska farmers.
But, even with this change, farmers won’t be able to sell the same amount of popcorn they usually sell this time of year. It is estimated that over 110 million pounds of popcorn kernels will remain unsold.
Have you purchased more ready-to-eat microwave popcorn over the past few months? What's your preferred brand? Let us know in the comments!