Consumer research snapshot: Fourth of July celebrators plan to spend on food and beer

Three-quarters of consumers expect rising prices to affect their Fourth of July spending, yet the vast majority still plan to celebrate and spend.
Elizabeth Christenson
Editor, Retail Leader
Elizabeth Christenson
Fourth of July

The majority of consumers (87%) plan to celebrate the Fourth of July this year, and spend an average of $93.34 on food items, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). Nearly one-third (32%) of those celebrating plan to purchase additional patriotic items.

According to NRF, consumers plan to celebrate this year with:

  • Cookout, barbecue or picnic — 65%.
  • Fireworks and/or community celebrations — 42%.
  • Travel/vacation — 14%.
  • Attending a parade — 13%.
  • Other — 7%.

With the majority of consumers socializing with food this year, Americans are expected to drop $9.5 billion on food items this Fourth of July compared to $7.7 billion last year, according to NRF.

Independence Day food spending by U.S. consumers
Click image to enlarge.
Independence Day food spending by U.S. consumers
Click image to enlarge.

Some 94% of participants in the Numerator’s study said they would shop for the holiday. Topping its list of purchase intent:

  • Food items — 83%.
  • Alcohol beverages — 47%. 
  • Non-alcoholic beverages — 34%. 
  • Decorations — 22%. 
  • Party supplies — 20%.

Nearly half of consumers plan to purchase adult beverages, up 5% from last year. However, Numerator noted, spending shifted for the holiday, potentially priming sales of related beverageware and accessories. Among those planning to buy adult beverages

  • Beer comes in at 68% planning to purchase versus 62% in 2022.
  • wine at 35% versus 31% in 2022. 
  • ready-to-drink cocktails at 27% versus 23% in 2022. 
  • spirits at 27% versus 23% in 2022.

Three-quarters of consumers expect rising prices to hit their Fourth of July spending, Numerator pointed out. To that end, 34% say they expect a slight impact from inflation, 23% anticipate a moderate impact and 17% expect a significant impact. 

Similar to consumers celebrating Memorial Day, three-quarters of consumers are seeking out ways to save money, Numerator found, including: 

  • 52% buying items on sale. 
  • 31% preparing budget-friendly foods. 
  • 27% using more coupons. 
  • 20% shopping at dollar or discount stores. 
  • 16% switching to store/private label brands. 
  • 11% purchasing smaller items. 
  • 9% traveling less.
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