Last week, we entered the expected beginning-of-the-quarter lull. Volumes fell by nearly 4% this week but remain above February levels. Tender rejections also fell this week as primary freight continues to be accepted by carriers.
Compared to this time last year, the market is up 3.4%. But making freight market comparisons to the same week last year isn’t apples to apples. Last year, Easter fell on April 1 — this year, it’s April 21.
When we take a closer look at this Easter compared to previous years, we see a clear uptick in candy volume, the biggest driver of the holiday’s retail sales. Over 146 million pounds of candy were purchased in the week leading up to Easter back in 2016. That’s over $800 million in creme-filled eggs, jelly beans, and marshmallow chicks. In fact, some Northeastern candy makers began using shared distribution centers to help.
This year, the National Retail Foundation predicts $18.11 billion will be spent on Easter goods. Candy again hops to the top of the list of biggest driver of retail sales. You can expect to see consumption highest in the Midwest: 37% of those who aren’t celebrating and 87% of those who are celebrating are planning to purchase some sweet treats for their baskets this year.
If you’re moving retail or consumer packaged goods this time of year, be sure to tender your loads sooner rather than later to take advantage of the ample supply and to keep ahead of the sugar rush.