Fourth of July celebrations won’t be bigger this year, but most Americans plan a return to past habits

Few say they’re planning a bigger celebration now that they’re vaccinated, but a return to normal is still big for one of America’s top food and beverage holidays

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  • Ben Meyerson Newsletter editor
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The Fourth of July is almost here – a date that President Joe Biden targeted earlier this year as the point where enough Americans would be vaccinated that we could safely see family and friends. But with the world largely reopened and people returning to their old lives, few Americans appear to be planning a bigger celebration for the nation’s birthday than they held in the past.

Less than one in ten Americans (8%) plan to celebrate in a bigger way this year than they did before COVID, according to the latest data from the Ipsos Coronavirus Consumer Tracker. That number holds relatively stable despite whether people identify as Democrat, Republican or independent.

Indeed, most people say their plans for the Fourth of July will be consistent with past years, either before or during COVID: A combined 56% say their celebrations will be either how they celebrated last year during COVID, or how they celebrated before COVID.

For food and beverage brands, this isn’t bad news: The Fourth of July is the No. 1 holiday for at-home beer sales, according to the National Beer Wholesalers Association, and Americans plan to spend $7.5 billion on food for the holiday this year, according to WalletHub.

“The world has much to celebrate this year, but one of the great things about America is that celebrations come in all shapes and sizes, as cultures from around the globe meld together,” said Ivana Sinclair, a senior client officer for Ipsos in the food and beverage sector. “Whether it’s a small gathering with family or a blowout barbecue, the Fourth of July is a great moment to reflect on the pandemic, and toast to our future.”

fourth of july celebrations by partyThere are larger splits when breaking down the size of the celebrations by political affiliation: Nearly twice as many Democrats (17%) say they plan a smaller celebration this year compared to Republicans (9%) and independents (8%).

  • Republicans are more likely to say they’re returning to how they celebrated before COVID – 47%, compared to 30% of Democrats and 32% of independents
  • Democrats and independents are more likely to say they’re celebrating similarly to last year – 23% of Democrats and 26% of independents, compared to 16% of Republicans

One in five Americans (22%) say they don’t plan to celebrate at all – including nearly one in three Americans older than 55 (31%). They’re more than twice as likely to say they’re staying home than young adults aged 18-34 (14%).

While Americans may not be exploding back into the world for the Fourth of July, the overall trend is promising for brands – especially as they look ahead to holidays in the second half of 2021.

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The author(s)

  • Ben Meyerson Newsletter editor

Consumer & Shopper