Consumers go online to learn about specialty ingredients they’ve tasted in restaurant dishes, Wainer said. They look for ways to prepare specialty items at home and want their supermarkets to carry the items.
“The specialty SKUs that are available have probably doubled in supermarkets in the past five years,” Wainer said.
Retailers now have tropical roots departments, organics, fresh-cut fruit, prepared salads and other specialty items. Some of Sid Wainer’s newer specialty items include varietal mushrooms and berries.
Perhaps one of its more unusual items is stinging nettles, which must be prepared carefully, but can substitute for spinach or other greens in recipes.