Super Bowl 51: Consumers Are Spending Less But Food & Beverage Brands Likely Won’t Take a Hit


According to the The National Retail Federation (NRF), consumers will spend $14.1 billion on Super Bowl-related products this year – that’s a 9.3 percent decrease from last year’s $15.5 billion spend.

While there doesn’t seem to be any concrete reason for this – Retail Dive speculates declining TV ratings and team popularity (or lack thereof) may be contributing factors – but one thing seems to be quite certain: food and beverage brands have nothing to worry about.

Of the 189 million Americans planning to tune into Sunday night’s big game, 80 percent of them say they will purchase food and beverages, as per to the NRF’s annual Super Bowl Spending Survey.

“With the holidays past us, consumers are looking forward to spending time with friends and family for some good old-fashioned fun to celebrate the big game,” said Matthew Shay, NRF’s President and CEO. What’s a better way to bring family and friends together than an abundance of food and drinks (I mean, really)? Consumers seem to agree. As a matter of fact, the estimated 45 million people who will be hosting a Super Bowl party should expect a full house with 27 percent of those with Super Bowl plans planning to attend a party.

Additionally, 12.4 million people plan to head out to their favorite local bars and restaurants to watch the game. Analyst Pam Goodfellow’s says, “Even though the number of viewers is slightly down this year, plenty are still planning to enjoy the day by watching it at their favorite bar or friend’s place, wearing their lucky jerseys and hoping their favorite team wins.”

Come out on top

As consumers scramble to prepare their party in the days leading up to the big game, big brands surprisingly don’t see a significant bump in traffic. It’s the commercials that really affect sales. But fear not, craft brands, because sinking millions into a 45 second commercial may not be the leg up it purports to be – according to the audience, at least. Surprisingly, only 10 percent of viewers say commercials influence them to purchase products. Another 16 percent actually urge advertising companies to save their money and pass those savings down to them.


Moral of the story? Food and beverage brands should take advantage of this time of year by striving to carry everything hosts need for the perfect party, while brands in other industries should put their focus on sales and promotions leading up to the event. As 16 percent of viewers alluded to, the Super Bowl can definitely be an expense affair, even for the consumer.

Dayana Cadet

Dayana Cadet

Dayana’s love affair with writing spans all manner of content. As the Content Specialist at Hubba, connecting people to the things they love is where she thrives.

Follow her at @D_isforDayana
Dayana Cadet