Category: Grocery

Weekly Roundup

Heineken hit with a £2 million fine

Heineken’s pubs division has been slapped with a £2 million fine for forcing its tenants to stock ‘unreasonable levels’ of its own beers and ciders. The Pubs Code Adjudicator (PCA) ruled that Star Pubs & Bars, which operates the pub estate business of Heineken in the UK, had ‘seriously and repeatedly’ breached the pubs code over the last three years.

The investigation found that pub tenants who asked to stock competitor brands were told that 100% of the keg beer they sold had to be Heineken brands. After several interventions by the PCA, Star changed its policy to specify ‘must-stock’ brands. But this still required many tenants who stocked little or no Heineken products to stock 60% Heineken keg beer within a year. Naughty boys.

Waitrose continue trial with Deliveroo

Waitrose has announced that it is expanding its on-demand grocery trial with Deliveroo to 25 more locations, taking the total to 30 and growing its reach to 3.1 million households. The retailer has also added 100 products to the range, meaning Deliveroo customers can now choose from more than 650 items.

The original trial launched in September with Waitrose saying it had seen strong demand for the service with half of the orders being made by repeat customers. The extended trial is set to continue until the end of November when a decision will be taken on whether to roll-out the service further.

The retailer also has its own two-hour home delivery service, Waitrose Rapid, which now has over 37,000 customers. Its full-shop online grocery service now offers over 190,000 weekly slots, compared to 55,000 before the pandemic, with plans underway to increase capacity to 250,000 weekly slots.

Brew Dogs ‘ALD IPA’ goes on sale in ALDI

Aldi has revealed that it will be stocking ALD IPA, a beer born out of Twitter banter between the craft brewer BrewDog and the supermarket chain. The eponymous beer was first created as a joke tweet after shoppers commented on the resemblance between Aldi’s Anti-Establishment beer and BrewDog’s popular Punk IPA. embed] BrewDog initially suggested it would create ‘Yaldi IPA’ in a mocking social media post.  However, the supermarket, which is known for its ‘Like brands’ approach, responded with: ‘We would have gone with ALD IPA, send us a crate and we’ll talk…’ The crate must have done the trick, because just two months on, what started as a spoof brand will now be sold exclusively in Aldi stores. The ALD IPA will be available as a special buy from this week and is BrewDog’s first exclusive creation for a supermarket. A 4.7% session IPA, it is based on BrewDog’s Hop Fiction recipe and will cost just £1.39 per can. Those Brew Dog’s really do know how to market.
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Weekly Roundup

Plant-based food products becoming a more popular option

Almost half of the UK population (44%) would consider trying a plant-based product because of the positive health benefits, according to new research conducted by Product of the Year, the UK’s biggest survey of product innovation.

Conducted online last month, UK consumers were asked to identify factors that would encourage them to try a plant-based product with 31% citing cost as a determining factor (the second most popular response after health benefits) with one in four (25%) identifying environmental factors.

With people playing closer attention to their diet during (and post) lockdown and increasingly adopting ‘flexitarian’ diets, the sales of plant-based products have soared. Recent stats from Kantar showed an 87% increase in plant-based product sales, buoyed by the success of initiatives such as Veganuary.

Kellogg's launching innovative packaging for the blind

Kellogg’s has marked World Sight Day by launching Coco Pops boxes for blind and partially sighted people as a trial in almost 60 Co-op stores. The new boxes have been created in partnership with the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB). They feature UK-first technology that allows a smartphone to detect an on-pack code which triggers the playback of labelling and allergen information to the user. The trial comes after research from RNIB revealed that nine in ten blind and partially sighted people feel that information on food packaging is difficult or impossible to read.

The technology, called NaviLens, is currently used across Barcelona, Madrid, and other Spanish city’s transport systems, making the cities easier to navigate for visually impaired people. It has now been introduced in the UK for the first time as part of the Kellogg’s trial. It is also the first time NaviLens has been used on food packaging. If successful, the business hopes to adapt more of its cereal boxes to include the technology.

Waitrose bags the award for ‘Supermarket of the year’

Waitrose has won the title of ‘Supermarket of the Year’ at the annual Which? awards that recognise brands across various industries for good customer service, value for money, innovation, and breadth of offering. In the supermarket category, Waitrose saw off competition from shortlisted rivals including Asda, Iceland, Sainsbury’s and Tesco.

The consumer watchdog praised the chain’s response to the pandemic, offering customers a range of ways to shop, particularly for the elderly and vulnerable. It said Waitrose have handled the increase in demand for groceries particularly well, particularly during a difficult economic period.

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Ocado Overtakes Tesco as Most Valuable Retailer.

After an axing of thousands of UK based jobs, a couple of years ago, Amazon is looking redress the balance and go on a mass hiring spree.

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