Panasonic Explores How The Pandemic Transformed Food Industry

Panasonic Corporation of North America released its industry survey as to how the COVID-19 pandemic has transformed Food Services and Food Retail businesses.

The new study reveals that one in four Food Services and Food Retailers now view their companies as tech-forward early adopters, up from one in eight prior to the pandemic.

The research is a follow up to a previous study conducted by Panasonic shortly before the coronavirus outbreak. In late 2019, Panasonic conducted a food industry pulse survey in association with Harvard Business Review Analytic Services. The survey found that more than half of Food Services and Food Retail executives believed that transformational technologies enabled them to attain a significant competitive advantage. As the new study shows, businesses within the industry now see an urgent need to rapidly adapt to changing customer behavior and demands.

"Undoubtedly, the food services and food retail industry saw many challenges this year. At the same time, many operations from grocery and convenience stores to restaurants, were able to transform in real-time to quickly meet consumers' needs," said Lauren Sallata, Chief Marketing Officer, Panasonic Corporation of North America. "Agility has become essential to business success, and digital technology adoption the major enabler. The urgency to advance health and safety and consumer convenience is fast-tracking innovation to organizational business models in the industry."

Key findings:

  • 100% of the survey respondents said COVID-19 has increased the urgency to adopt transformational technologies
  • 85% have experienced what they consider to be a very large impact on their business as a result of health and safety concerns
  • 71% cited digital transformation as very important to business agility, more than any other factor
  • 78% indicated that contactless payments are in much greater demand, resulting in the adoption of a number of solutions including food lockers for pick-up, facial recognition kiosks, and vehicle/license plate recognition
  • 53% believed their customers are more willing to opt-in to personally-identifiable recognition technologies for the sake of convenience and personal safety

The survey respondents believe many of these behavior shifts propelled by the pandemic will last for at least the next 12 months or more. With consumers motivated by a new set of priorities – such as safety, self-service and preferred delivery methods – businesses must rethink the way they do business and experiment with new ways to meet changing demands.

To download a full copy of the study, please visit

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