SLR February 2024 Edition

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Disposable vape ban on its way




SLR Awards entry deadline nears


Time to give more space to RTDs?

JUSTICE ON THE HORIZON TV drama sparks Horizon scandal into life with justice finally set to prevail

SLR Above & Beyond Shortlist unveiled! – P22

February 2024


Contents ISSUE 250

NEWS 04 05 06 08 09 10 11

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National Lottery New licence operator Allwyn reveals plans to “significantly enhance” support for retailers. Legislation SGF warns that a rising tide of regulation could drown thousands of local retail businesses. Forecourts New proposals would see operators legally required to share live information on their pump prices. Data CJ Lang renews its partnership with data consultancy TWC for a further three years. Regulations Government decides to keep exempting small shops from unit pricing regulations after a consultation. Illicit Trade A national initiative exposes over 100 suspected rogue vape traders. News Extra Vaping The UK government is acting after 70% of respondents to a consultation “overwhelmingly” supported its plan for a ban on disposable vapes. Product News Monster Energy unveils a new extreme sports promo and Cadbury marks its bicentenary. Off-Trade News Global Brands launches a new range of premium canned cocktails while Absolut is buzzing about its new honey-flavoured variant.





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Above & Beyond Awards The judges had some tough decisions to make, but the shortlist for SLR’s inaugural Above and Beyond Awards has been decided. SLR Awards With the SLR Awards returning to their traditional slot in June, there is not long to go until the entry deadline. Off-Trade RTDs are undergoing a major period of reinvigoration, so is it time to give more space to the category and focus on the fastest-selling lines? Charity The remarkable efforts of GroceryAid’s Scottish committee are having a direct impact on the number of industry colleagues the charity is able to support. Hotlines The latest new products and media campaigns. Under The Counter When reports of a naked customer surface you can be sure The Auld Boy will soon get to the bottom of things.











Tobacco Tobacco is still a ray of light for convenience stores in the current financial backdrop, despite a hostile political environment towards the category. Beer & Cider The beer and cider category has endured a bumpy ride of late but craft beer is still performing strongly, with multipacks a key growth driver. Soft Drinks A raft of flavour innovation and a renewed focus on energy has helped soft drinks remain amongst the topselling categories. Price-marked Packs Price-marked packs are still crucial to convenience as inflationary pressures persist across the economy.


Post Office A TV drama about the Horizon scandal has forced the government to act to bring justice and compensation to affected postmasters.



News NATIONAL LOTTERY New licence operator reveals plans to “significantly enhance” support for retailers.

55 North presented with GroceryAid award SLR Publisher 55 North has been presented with a GroceryAid

Allwyn unveils sales team expansion and new lotto advertising

Bronze Award in recognition of its support and fundraising efforts for the industry charity throughout 2023. The GroceryAid Awards is an inclusive annual programme allowing organisations, both large and small, to demonstrate how they support GroceryAid, and in turn industry colleagues.

Mark Steven joins Retail AI Retail AI has appointed Mark Steven as its new Chief Executive. Steven has more than 30 years of experience in the retail sector and is former Chief Executive of Snappy Shopper. He said: “Our innovative modules, including queue busting and proxy purchasing, are already making waves with additional modules addressing anti-theft and aggression or threatening

Allwyn has revealed that it will be increasing the size of its retail sales team by 50% in the first months of the new National Lottery licence. The company will recruit 55 new sales reps over the coming months, as well as a number of new managers, in a bid to “significantly enhance” the level of support provided to retailers. In addition, new Lotto advertising has launched in a bid to boost retail sales by driving players into stores. The ‘always on’ Lotto campaign features a refreshed brand look and some quirky out-of-home advertising. Allwyn’s Director of Channel Operations, Alex Green, said: “Retailers are absolutely central to our

vision to grow The National Lottery responsibly over the next 10 years – and expanding our sales team in the next few months to considerably boost our support for them is just the start of what we have planned. “While the focus for day one of the new 10-year licence has always been prioritising ‘business as usual’ – with players and retailers seeing very little change to start with – we have huge investment planned for retail technology, demonstrating our ongoing commitment to ensuring the channel remains healthy, relevant and buoyant. The new licence heralds an exhilarating new chapter for The National Lottery and the massive good it does for people and communities across the whole of the UK.” Meanwhile, DPD is to replace Parcelforce as the chosen courier for Scratchcard and consumable deliveries and collections – all of which will be delivered from a new eco-friendly warehouse in Warrington. The warehouse will also feature a dedicated Scratchcard fulfilment team that, from March, will contact retailers to make sure they have everything they need to sell National Lottery Scratchcards effectively.

behaviour currently in live testing on a number of Booker concept stores in Scotland.”

ACS welcomes Ofgem’s energy support plans ACS has responded to a consultation launched by energy regulator Ofgem, welcoming proposals to expand the number of businesses that have access to the Energy Ombudsman. ACS highlighted the challenges associated with resolving disputes with energy companies,


PayPoint wins DVLA contract PayPoint has been awarded the Driver & Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) contract for providing international driving permits across its network of retailer partners across the UK. The multi-year agreement will see the service move from the Post Office to PayPoint from 1 April 2024, adding another important central government service to its portfolio. Nick Wiles, Chief Executive of PayPoint, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded this contract and to forge a new partnership with the DVLA, adding to the growing number of central government services that we operate across our extensive retailer partner network.”

noting that most independent retailers have no more resources or knowledge about energy contracts than an average domestic consumer.

Co-op adds all stores to Safe Spaces scheme Co-op has added its stores to the National Business Crime Centre’s Safe Spaces scheme, which aims to provide provision in the retail sector for anyone feeling unsafe or vulnerable when out and about on the UK’s streets. The Co-op’s move has boosted the number of locations signed up to the scheme to more than 13,000.



VISITOR LEVY Councils could invest the proceeds into the local economy

Visitor levy legislation passes first stage The Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill, which would enable councils to apply a levy on overnight stays in line with many tourist destinations across Europe, has passed its first vote in Parliament. The legislation would give local authorities the power to introduce a visitor levy in all or parts of their area. The levy would be a percentage of the overnight accommodation cost, with the rate set by the local council. It would apply to almost all types of overnight accommodation, including hotels, self-catering accommodation and campsites. Councils would be required to consult local communities, businesses and tourism organisations on

whether a visitor levy should be brought in and how any revenue should be spent. Public Finance Minister Tom Arthur said: “I strongly believe that a visitor levy can be a force for good, offering councils the opportunity to use the proceeds to invest in their local economy, bringing benefits to residents and visitors alike.” Having passed Stage One, the Visitor Levy (Scotland) Bill will be considered for line-by-line amendments by the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee before Stage Three when the full Parliament considers further amendments and makes a final vote on whether or not to pass the bill.


News LEGISLATION SGF has raised concerns that both governments are failing to recognise what can reasonably be delivered by retailers

SGF warns rising tide of regulation could drown thousands of local retail businesses The Scottish Grocers Federation is warning that a torrent of new regulation expected to land on small convenience retailers in 2024/25, on top of issues such as retail crime and reduced business rates relief, could spell the end for many vital community services. SGF has raised concerns that both governments in Edinburgh and Westminster are failing to recognise what can reasonably be delivered by convenience retailers and could potentially suffocate businesses with overregulation – all but ensuring some stores will no longer be viable in the coming years. It is expected that by the end of 2025, the sector will face at least six new areas of regulatory burden, including:

Q In-store restrictions to the placement and marketing of alcohol products, as well as a rising Minimum Unit Price on alcohol products; Q Restrictions on the promotion and location of dozens of food items categorised as High in Fat, Sugar, or Salt; Q Potential restrictions on the visibility and sale of vaping products in store; Q A generational ban on the sale of tobacco products; Q Requirements to meet new net zero targets relating to the Circular Economy Bill and WEEE regulations, including changes to waste and recycling management; Q A UK-wide deposit return scheme.

Meanwhile, retailers are facing an increasing surge in retail crime, impacting every part of the sector and the wellbeing of both staff and communities. In addition, real-terms reductions to business rates relief for small businesses, means some Scottish c-stores are now operating at a considerable disadvantage to their counterparts in England. Pete Cheema, SGF Chief Executive, said: “Instead of attacking well-meaning businesses, ministers need to think again and come up with a joined-up and workable approach to introducing new regulation. “It’s the easy road for ministers to place ban after ban on our sector, but what will remain once the dust has settled?”

Edinburgh takes action on pavement parking City of Edinburgh Council has become the first in Scotland to crack down on pavement parking. The council has implemented new powers given to it by the Transport (Scotland) Act 2019, which came into effect last month. Motorists now face a £100 fine for parking on pavements, parking at dropped kerbs, and double parking, with an exemption for delivery drivers.

Jisp reports strong finish to 2023 Jisp has reported that it finished 2023 in a record-breaking position, with retail sales through its Scan & Save mobile app solution increasing 327% to £3.5m for 2023. Shopper savings through the app reached £875,000 in 2023, up 31.4% on the previous year. This follows an increase in shoppers in 2023 of 21%. Total scans of the app’s augmented reality vouchers hit the 1.9 million mark in 2023.

SUSTAINABILITY The Scottish government’s new Route Map sets out a plan for new national reuse and recycling targets

Scottish government consults on plan for moving to a circular economy The Scottish government is seeking views on its latest plan for transitioning to a circular economy. Following an initial consultation in 2022, the new Route Map sets out a plan for new national reuse and recycling targets, along with priority actions needed between now and the end of the decade to help drive Scotland’s transition to a circular economy. The proposed priorities in the Route Map are to: Q reduce food waste from households and businesses; Q significantly improve recycling from households and businesses;

Q set new circular economy targets from 2025, which will run until at least 2030; Q minimise the impact of disposal of waste that cannot be reused or recycled; Q promote and support responsible production and consumption. The government says the actions complement provisions in the draft Circular Economy Bill, which is currently at Stage 1 in Parliament. Circular Economy Minister Lorna Slater said: “This second consultation sets out our priority actions and the tools we will put in place to help everyone play their part in cutting waste and capitalising on the economic opportunities that a circular economy presents to businesses. I urge everyone to take part.” The consultation will run until 15 March.


Return of the public health supplement?

M&S to invest £30m in Scottish stores

The Scottish government is considering reintroducing its public health supplement – which forced larger retailers to pay extra if they sell alcohol and tobacco – at the end of the year. Under the supplement, introduced in 2012, retailers selling alcohol and tobacco from premises with a rateable value of more than £300,000 had to pay an extra tax. The proposal was not mentioned by Deputy First Minister Shona Robison during her Budget speech in December, but was hidden within the Budget documents. A Scottish Government spokesman commented: “Representatives from the retail sector and other relevant stakeholders will be consulted as part of that exploratory work.”

invest £30m in its stores

M&S has unveiled plans to across Scotland. The retailer’s investment will deliver more than five new store openings and expansions over the next 18 months. The plans include £15m for M&S Aberdeen Union Square, expanding to almost double its size; a new foodhall in Linlithgow; and an M&S store in Largs for the first time.

Tanker drivers’ strike threatens fuel supplies Fuel supplies to forecourts in Scotland could be hit after drivers at tanker company Hoyer voted to walk out. More than 30 Unite union members employed by the Grangemouth-based haulier backed strike action by 100% on a 97% turnout, after the membership rejected a 7% pay offer. Businesses that would be impacted by any industrial action include BP and Esso.



News FUEL PRICES Government proposals would see forecourt operators legally required to share live information on their pump prices

ACS launches guidance on new vape recycling rules ACS has launched new guidance for retailers on how to provide a vape recycling service in store. Under new rules, which came into force at the start of 2024, all retailers who sell vapes (regardless of type of store) must provide a recycling facility for consumers. Enforcement of the regulations will begin from April 2024 and all retailers should have a policy in place by the end of March.

Spar Scotland and Rollover donate £5k to Marie Curie Spar Scotland has donated £5,000 to Marie Curie, after a promotion with Rollover Hotdogs in 80 company-owned stores during December 2023. This saw 15p from the sale of every hotdog donated to the national cancer charity. The £2,500 raised in stores from the sale of hotdogs was matched by Rollover and CJ Lang, raising a total of £5,000 from the campaign for Marie Curie.

Allwyn appoints Chief Security Officer Allwyn, the operator of The

Government consults over Pumpwatch scheme Retailers, consumers and other organisations are being asked for views on the government’s new Pumpwatch scheme, which would see all fuel stations across the country legally required to share real-time price information with an organisation to be appointed by the government. Under the new proposals, forecourts across the country will be legally required to share live information on their pump prices within 30 minutes of any change in price, which could save drivers 3p per litre on fuel by helping them find the best deal at the pump. This freely available data will enable tech companies to develop new ways for drivers to search for the cheapest fuel while on mobile apps, online mapping platforms, journey planning tools, price comparison websites, and in-car devices.

The government has acted after some fuel retailers were found to be overcharging customers, and already there are signs that fairer deals are returning to forecourts. Twelve of the biggest retailers, including all four fuel-selling supermarkets, have already signed up to an interim voluntary scheme run by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to share their daily prices – with some news

STORE OPENINGS Retailer Jay Javid has spent close to £300,000 developing Nisa Local Wee Mill

outlets and websites using this data to offer price comparisons. The consultation also covers some elements of the CMA’s new role in monitoring the road fuel market. Industry have been asked for their views on several areas, including the topics the CMA will focus on, the frequency of reporting, and support to help businesses with the CMA’s information requests.

GOOD FOOD The Scottish government’s new plan will cover everything from farm to fork and beyond

PGNJ opens 11th Nisa in Rutherglen Scottish government consults on Good Food Nation plan

National Lottery, has appointed Mark Hughes as its Chief Security Officer. Hughes’ role will include information security, game platform security, and physical security. He joins from Smart DCC, the organisation responsible for the communication network that supports smart meters across the UK, where he was Chief Information Security Officer.

Nisa’s charity supports UK food pantries Nisa’s Making a Difference Locally charity has launched its first Heart of the Community Awards for 2024. The awards will supporti food pantries across the UK, with an overall £50,000 fund available for Nisa retailers to nominate local causes. The donations of up to £1,000 per store will help food pantries provide essential food and other supplies to people in need.



Retailer Jay Javid has opened his 11th Nisa store in Rutherglen, South Lanarkshire. Nisa Local Wee Mill, developed by Jay’s company PGNJ, will be the first to take electronic shelf labelling, which includes larger digital displays for promotions. Jay, has spent close to £300,000 developing the store, which is near a golf range and sits in a heavily populated neighbourhood, with both a working-class and middle-class customer demographic, which Jay says is perfect for the Co-op own label. He is also trying to benefit from a nearby industrial estate with a food-to-go section that has a fresh cream cake counter along with a TurboChef oven and serve over counter for toasties and other hot savoury snacks. There is also a Pret Express coffee machine and Tango Ice Blast, Fanta, and CocaCola slushed drinks. And, as a nod to its previous life as The Wee Mill pub, there is also a walk-in 32sq ft beer cave.

The Scottish government has launched a consultation on its plans to ensure everyone in Scotland can access nutritious, sustainable food. The Good Food Nation Plan sets out the ways in which the Scottish government will work with businesses and organisations to help connect people to locally produced, high-quality food. The plan will cover everything from farm to fork and beyond and draw together a range of different policies. Small Business, Innovation, Tourism and Trade Minister Richard Lochhead said: “We have come far in this journey but we recognise that more needs to be done.” The consultation will be open until 22 April 2024.


We’ll be visiting stores to see how we can help you reach the support level - who will be the first?

News DATA CJ Lang’s partnership with TWC continues to evolve

ScottishPower and PayPoint extend services PayPoint and ScottishPower have announced a new service for their partnership, that lets the energy supplier’s customers with smart meters add credit using the PayPoint network. Customers can now show a barcode from their ScottishPower app or a letter to top up their smart meter, as well as using traditional energy keys and cards.

Fed reshuffles senior team The NFRN has made interim changes to its operational structure following the departure of its Chief Operating Officer Graham Stafford. Adrian Page becomes Business and Engagement Director, Brian Murphy becomes News and Operations Director, and Phil Jaggard becomes Member and Development Director.

Penny Petroleum resubmits Fife forecourt plans Penny Petroleum has resubmitted plans for the refurbishment of Garvock Service Station, in Dunfermline. The company is seeking consent to replace the shopfront, canopy, fuel pump islands and car wash, add a rear extension and create new bays for electric vehicles, parking and a jet wash. If approved, there will be 16 parking spaces in total, and stands for four bikes, as well as a new interceptor. An earlier application led to 27 objections

CJ Lang extends data partnership with TWC CJ Lang & Son has renewed its partnership with data consultancy TWC for a further three years. The companies launched their partnership at the end of 2020 and Spar Scotland SalesTrack was launched in 2021, giving suppliers access to wholesale shipments and company-owned stores’ retail data. Spar Scotland SalesTrack has evolved over the past two years, with a platform upgrade and reporting functionality exclusive to CJ Lang added earlier this year and the recent launch of IndyTrack, which gives independent Spar retailers who share their EPoS data the opportunity to benchmark their performance against others in the group. Richard Collins, Trading Director at CJ Lang & Son, said:

“We’ve seen increased supplier engagement and a greater focus on identifying data-led opportunities for mutual gain. Equally, armed with more data – and able to benchmark themselves against others – encourages our retailers to focus on driving their business performance. “We have worked closely with TWC to evolve the Spar Scotland SalesTrack service over the last

couple of years and TWC shares our vision for a sector that is data-led, making them the perfect partner for our evolving data needs.” Tom Fender, Development Director at TWC, added: “Our data partnership with CJ Lang continues to evolve each year and Richard and the team are an absolute pleasure to work with.” TWC has also revealed that it has extended its partnership with United Wholesale (Scotland) and commissioned a suite of additional reports that track online purchasing behaviour on the wholesaler’s app and website. The reports reveal how retailers interact with the wholesaler’s e-commerce sites and how brand activation and sales performance compare online versus offline.


Pinkie Farm sees coffee-to-go sales soar Pinkie Farm Spar store, in Musselburgh, has seen coffee-to-go sales soar by more than 100% since becoming the first independent Spar store in Scotland to install the premium coffee-to-go brand Barista Bar. Barista Bar, which launched at Spar Scotland’s annual tradeshow in Aviemore in September, was developed by Henderson Foodservice. Dan Brown, Managing Director of Pinkie Farm, said: “The unit and it’s branding look great in-store and our customers seem to love it – we anticipated some existing brand loyalty for our previous offering and were unsure of the impact this may have; however, we were delighted to find customers’ reactions were the complete opposite and we were met with a flood of positive comments when Barista Bar was introduced.” Barista Bar machines have a patented milk system to create foam on cappuccinos, lattes and hot chocolate drinks. The brand also now offers a Planted machine that includes oat milk options.

after drawings mistakenly showed the access to a popular walking route closed off.

Asda opens Clydebank convenience store Asda opened a new convenience store at Western Highway Service Station, in Clydebank, on 30 January. This comes as the retailer continues its programme to convert the convenience stores acquired from the Co-op and EG Group to its new Asda Express convenience brand. The newly-converted Asda Express stores stock up to 3,000 branded and own-label products.



SPONSORSHIP Spar Scotland is sponsoring this year’s World Athletics Indoor Championships

Spar Scotland unveils World Athletics Indoor Championship support Spar Scotland has been unveiled as an Official Event Supporter of the 2024 World Athletics Indoor Championships, which takes place in Glasgow for the first time from 1-3 March 2024. The company will also provide food for hundreds of volunteers and staff who will be working at the event over the three days. Drinks for other client groups will also be provided. In addition, Spar Scotland has rebranded two of its delivery vehicles to promote the event and has also invested heavily to promote the event on social media, Spar in-store radio advertising, in-store digital screens and point of sale, consumer competitions, and PR. KEEP UP WITH THE LATEST NEWS AS IT HAPPENS – FOLLOW US ON TWITTER @SLRMAG

News PRICING Government has decided to continue exempting small shops from unit pricing regulations after consultation.

Small shop exemption from unit pricing rules to continue

Imperial announces senior marketing appointment Imperial Tobacco has named Yawer Rasool as Cluster Marketing Director UK & Ireland. A seasoned marketer, Rasool has

The government has decided to continue exempting small shops from unit pricing regulations. In its response to the consultation on improving price transparency and product information for consumers, the Department of Business and Trade has concluded that there is no compelling case for removing the exemption. In response, ACS Chief Executive James Lowman, said: “Many convenience stores already show unit prices to help customers to compare across brands and different pack sizes. However, this exemption is important especially for small businesses who do not have the systems to calculate unit prices across thousands of lines on

their shelves, and in some cases do not have the space to display all the information required.” The consultation also sought views on a proposed amendment to the Price Marking Order to include requirements for the deposit return scheme. In response to questions asking whether retailers should display the cost of the deposit separately, so consumers know how much money they will get back if they return the eligible item to a return point, 91% of respondents agreed. Eighty-six per cent of respondents agreed that the unit price should be calculated exclusive of the deposit. In a consumer survey, when presented with different options

on how the deposit should be displayed in practice, three in five preferred to see the selling price and deposit displayed separately. Defra has notified SGF that it will continue to work with the Department for Business and Trade as it works towards amending the Price Marking Order for DRS. Defra said: “Having considered the responses, particularly the agreement over displaying the cost of the deposit separately on price labelling, we will amend the Price Marking Order so that the selling price displayed excludes the deposit, while the deposit is clearly displayed separately, and the unit price is calculated excluding the deposit.”

more than 17 years’ experience at global, regional, and local levels. As member of the UK & Ireland Cluster Leadership team, he will help drive Imperial’s strategic priorities, including accelerating the company’s next generation business.

Glasgow pub could be demolished for new store A former Glasgow pub could be demolished to make way for a convenience store, a new application reveals. Applicant White Elephant Property is seeking permission to partially knock down the White Elephant on Merrylee Road and build a store with parking spaces. The new store, which would create

FORECOURTS Jet has seen its greatest annual growth in Scotland for more than a decade

Jet sees greatest annual growth in Scotland

Fuel brand Jet has picked up eight new sites in Scotland over the past 12 months, marking its greatest annual growth in the nation for over a decade. The new Jet-branded sites are Ayr Service Station, Boghall Service station in Bathgate, MFG Barclay Place in Edinburgh, Great Glen Service Station in Fort Augustus, MFG Sandymount in Glasgow, Highland Kilbirnie Service Station and Highland New Cumnock – both in Ayrshire, and Hillside Filling Station in Selkirk. In addition, Jet says its existing stations are performing well, with likefor-like site volumes in Scotland rising by 20% since 2019. Last year saw the first Jet TV advertising in Scotland for many years, with the Keep on Moving campaign launching on air in August 2023. Graham Clout, UK Dealer Sales Manager at Phillips 66, said: “Scotland is a hugely important market for us, so we’re thrilled to see the number of Jet-branded sites growing. We are a customer-first business and pride ourselves on nurturing and maintaining strong relationships – driving success for all our customers. “In 2024, we’ve got lots of exciting plans, including growing our EV offering and renewed marketing activity for what is set to be an exciting year. Jet is hoping to launch Jet Charge facilities in four service stations across Scotland in 2024.


United Wholesale Scotland partners with ShopMate United Wholesale Scotland is partnering with EPoS supplier ShopMate. The partnership will enable retailers to automatically display United Wholesale Scotland promotions on their ShopMate MediaMaster Screens, alongside manufacturer promotions, store-specific promotions and local community adverts. Chris Gallacher, Managing Director at United Wholesale Scotland, said: “We are delighted to partner with ShopMate ensuring all retailers who use their EPoS system can benefit from shopping at our depots or online.” Brian Eagle-Brown from ShopMate commented: “We’re very pleased to have partnered with United Wholesale Scotland, their innovation and tech-based approach combines well with our techdriven approach.”

25 jobs, would be open between 6am and 11pm, seven days a week.

Asda goes cashless Asda has unveiled plans to make 81 of its forecourts cashless. Only forecourts that are located adjacent to an Asda Superstore will be affected and there is no change to any of their other sites. The plans will affect forecourts in Govan, Cumbernauld, Kilmarnock, Kirkcaldy, Bridge of Dee, Portlethen, Middleton Park, and Elgin. The supermarket giant says the forecourts will be unmanned and that staff will be redeployed into its stores.

Spar Kincorth welcomes Women’s Scottish Cup Spar Kincorth, in Aberdeen, welcomed the Scottish Gas Women’s Scottish Cup to its store on 1 February. Access to the cup was possible because of Spar Scotland’s sponsorship partnership with the SFA. Visiting customers had the chance to win prizes and pick up goody bags. SGF’s Healthy Living Programme was also in attendance.



News ILLICIT VAPES Industry campaign reaches milestone

Unitas rebrands trade show Unitas Wholesale has rebranded its annual trade show, which takes place in Liverpool on 6-7 March. Named connect24, the show has been designed to deliver opportunities for further growth, including an enhanced

National initiative exposes over 100 suspected rogue vape traders

out-of-home presence, with leading foodservice suppliers showcasing their NPD and product sampling. The expansion of the Local Living retail ownbrand range will be a key feature of the show.

Cumnock petrol station plans progress A report has been submitted to East Ayrshire Council seeking to clarify conditions attached to plans for a New Cumnock petrol station. Grove Retail has submitted proposals that would see two HGV pumps installed on the outskirts of the town, as well as six pumps for cars and a kiosk. The report by developers outlines how a number of issues would all be carefully considered in the plans.

IGD names new president

Authorities have been alerted to more than 100 retailers suspected of underage and illicit vape sales through the UK Vaping Industry Association’s (UKVIA) nationwide Be Vape Vigilant initiative. The ongoing campaign – which only started at the end of 2023 and is supported by trading standards, the Association of Convenience Stores, and the wider retail sector – was created to encourage legitimate businesses and the general public to report retailers and wholesalers believed to be flouting the law. A new online platform has been established as part of the initiative, through which suspected rogue traders can be reported. The UKVIA then passes the information on to the relevant authorities who will use the intelligence in their ongoing efforts to crack down on rogue traders. To date 136 reports have been made through the platform.

Of those businesses flagged, more than half were non-specialist retailers including convenience stores, cornershops, off-licenses, and market stalls. One of the sellers reported through the platform was a dessert shop and one was a private residence. Almost 20% of all reports related exclusively to the underage sale of vaping products, while 47% related exclusively to illicit and non-compliant products. Overall, more than one-third of the reported businesses were believed to be guilty of both. UKVIA Director General John Dunne said: “While 100 reports is an excellent first milestone, this only represents a step on the journey to creating a more responsible and accountable sector – which is why the UKVIA will be ramping up this campaign moving into 2024 and is calling on those within and outside the industry to be vape vigilant.”

IGD has revealed that Sainsbury’s Chief Executive Simon Roberts will become its new President, taking over from Jason Tarry who is stepping down from his role as UK & ROI Chief Executive of Tesco. Roberts has extensive knowledge and experience in retail, having held a wide range of roles at M&S, Boots, and Sainsbury’s. Roberts will take over the IGD Presidency on 1 March 2024.

One Stop raises recordbreaking charity total One Stop raised £200,000 for BBC Children in Need in 2023 – the most the symbol group has raised for any of its charity partners in one campaign. This is the 11th year running that One Stop has supported the charity, with its stores selling a range of branded merchandise. One Stop employees from shop floors to head office also fundraised, with cake sales, raffles, tombolas, fun days, and pop-up shops.



ILLEGAL TOBACCO Retailers expect the proposed generational tobacco ban will lead to an increase in illicit activity

Illicit tobacco and vapes on the rise

More than a quarter of retailers (28%) have seen a rise in customers openly asking for illicit tobacco and vapes, new research reveals. Research from JTI, which questioned 250 convenience retailers, shows that 26% of retailers state that their store has been negatively impacted due to the sale of illicit tobacco and vapes by other businesses in the area, with 30% of retailers aware of one or more stores within a three-mile radius allegedly selling illicit products. The study also reveals that 67% of retailers expect the proposed generational tobacco ban will lead to an increase in illicit tobacco activity. In addition, one in three retailers have implemented specific training programmes for their staff to identify and prevent the sale of illicit tobacco and vaping products, but more support from above was identified as necessary. Sarah Connor, Director of Communications at JTI UK, said: “Retailers can play a vital role in combatting the illicit trade.”

NEW STORES Arnold Clark conversion would create between eight and 10 jobs

Plans to turn former Glasgow car showroom into convenience store unveiled Plans to convert a disused car showroom in Glasgow into a convenience store have been lodged with the local council. Glasgow City Council has received an application that requests permission to convert a disused Arnold Clark showroom on Shields Road into “a convenience store serving the local market, a specialist food store offering Asian foods and groceries, reflecting local demand, and a wholesale trade business”. It is proposed that the store would be open from 8am to 9pm seven days a week. If approval is granted, between eight and 10 jobs could be created.



News Extra


Government to introduce powers to ban disposable vapes The UK government is acting after 70% of respondents to a consultation “overwhelmingly” supported its plan for a ban on disposable vapes. The government is set to introduce new powers that ban disposable vapes in the UK, restrict vape flavours, introduce plain packaging, and change how vapes are displayed in shops. The measures come as part of the government’s response to its consultation on smoking and vaping, which was launched in October last year. More than 25,000 responses were analysed, and the government says there was “overwhelming” support among responses to its consultation for a disposable vape ban, with nearly 70% of parents, teachers, healthcare professionals and the general public supportive of the measure. The new powers will restrict flavours which are specifically marketed at children and ensure that manufacturers produce plainer, less visually appealing packaging. The powers will also allow government to change how vapes are displayed in shops, moving them out of sight of children and away from products that appeal to them, like sweets. The government will also bring in new fines for shops in England and Wales that sell vapes illegally to children. Trading standards officers will be empowered to act ‘on the spot’ to tackle underage tobacco and vape sales. Vaping alternatives – such as nicotine pouches – will also be outlawed for children who are increasingly turning to these highly addictive substitutes. The government has also noted that there is a strong case to take action to reduce the affordability of vapes and is continuing to consider options, including a new duty, to achieve this. In addition, the government has again reiterated its commitment to bring about the first smokefree generation and introduce legislation so children turning 15 this year or younger can never legally be sold tobacco. To help ensure the success of the smokefree generation plan, £30m new funding a year will be provided to help enforcement agencies implement these measures and stamp out opportunities for criminals. Scotland’s Public Health Minister Jenni Minto said: “We want to do more to achieve our goal of being tobacco-free in Scotland by 2034 and, after collaborating on the UK-wide consultation, we have worked closely across the four UK nations on next steps and now intend to act on taking forward its

recommendations, either on a UK-wide basis or through legislation in the Scottish Parliament. “I have worked closely with Circular Economy Minister Lorna Slater on disposable vapes. These are a threat to both public health and the environment – from litter on our streets, to the risk of fires in waste facilities – that’s why we will act on our Programme for Government commitment and move to ban them.” In response, Muntazir Dipoti, National President of the NFRN, said that while the trade body agrees that action is needed to prevent children and young people being attracted to vaping, it does not believe that banning disposable vapes is the way to go about it. He said: “An outright ban will simply send youngsters towards unorthodox and illicit sources where there is no compliance to tobacco and vaping laws, while the products they peddle are likely to contain dangerous and illegal levels of toxic chemicals. Disposable vapes are usually more affordable and, as such, are a bigger incentive for adult smokers to change to vapes.” Association of Convenience Stores Chief Executive James Lowman pointed out that there are rules already in place to stop children purchasing vapes, to stop vapes being littered and ensure they can be recycled, and to punish those who sell illicit products, but they are either not being enforced effectively or not at all due to a lack of resources provided to Trading Standards. “The government’s proposals will have a significant operational and financial impact on legitimate retailers, while rogue sellers will continue on without concern,” Lowman added. Meanwhile, UKVIA said it was “dismayed” at the government’s decision, which it branded a “desperate attempt” to sacrifice vapers for votes ahead of the upcoming General Election. The government’s newly announced measures will be taken forward in secondary legislation that will be subject to further consultation.

Scottish Grocers’ Federation

Convenience Matters with the SGF Looking ahead for 2024, it’s a year where many businesses will be hoping to bring back some level of normality. Stability and modest growth aren’t too much to ask for after a decade of challenges. Midterm economic forecasts show some improvement, so it’s remarkable that while everyone else is working hard to rebuild, our governments are stuck in a spiral of déjà vu. The Scottish Government’s proposals to restrict alcohol marketing will resurface this summer. Meanwhile, Scottish Labour want to go further with a levy on alcohol sales. Plus, the second consultation on restricting the promotion of junk foods could be published at any moment. Once again, the Finance Secretary didn’t pass on additional Barnett consequentials to provide business rates relief to retail in Scotland. Embedding the disadvantage to our businesses for another year. On a positive note, some Scottish ministers (not all), are getting better at engaging with industry. SGF hopes this goes beyond warm words and translates into action. Meanwhile Westminster is gearing up for a General Election. DRS has fallen by the wayside, and it is unclear how issues like improving access to cash and potential restrictions on vaping and tobacco products will now be resolved. Many businesses are struggling to make ends meet and overregulation is stifling growth. Poverty, deprivation and across the board restrictions don’t help our communities. Ministers need to reflect on the consequences of their decisions and prioritise growing the economy, ultimately increasing the tax take in the long term and putting money back into people’s pockets.




FROM THE RIDICULOUS TO THE SUBLIME If you’ve ever wondered about the awesome power of the media, then the recent Horizon furore should help demonstrate the difference the media can make to real lives. Since 1999, 736 sub-postmasters and mistresses have been banging their heads against a brick wall trying to secure some sort of closure on the biggest scandal that ever beset our industry. More than 700 branch managers were given criminal convictions – and all because of some faulty IT. And all these years later, the wheels of justice were still grinding away at a glacial pace, until… a TV drama on the Horizon scandal succeeded in galvanising the powers that be into giving the issue the urgent attention it deserved. And it happened pretty much overnight. It’s not often that I find myself agreeing with Rishi Sunak, but he was bang on the money when he called the Horizon scandal “one of the greatest miscarriages of justice in our nation’s history”. In a sense, it’s deplorable that it took a TV drama to trigger action that should have happened decades ago – but the fact that we finally might see justice prevail is clearly welcome. All the compensation in the world, however, won’t make up for what has been lost by those affected by Horizon. So, from the ridiculous to the sublime: the shortlist for our inaugural Above & Beyond Awards. Sublime is the word for the truly astonishing efforts and achievements by every single person on that shortlist. Taking part in the judging was an emotional process. There were tears shed by more than one judge and the judging process was one of the most memorable and uplifting experiences of my 25 or so years in local retailing. These awards are special because they recognise and reward the special people that make this industry so special. No other sector compares. Local retailing is at the very heart of Scottish life and it’s all down to people who see going above and beyond as ‘just part of the job’.

EDITORIAL Publishing Director & Editor Antony Begley Deputy Editor Liz Wells Features Editor Gaelle Walker Features Writer Elena Dimama Web Editor Findlay Stein

ADVERTISING Sales & Marketing Director Helen Lyons 07575 959 915 | Advertising Manager Garry Cole 07846 872 738 |

DESIGN Design & Digital Manager Richard Chaudhry

EVENTS & OPERATIONS Events & Circulation Manager Cara Begley Scottish Local Retailer is distributed free to qualifying readers. For a registration card, call 0141 222 5381. Other readers can obtain copies by annual subscription at £50 (UK), £62 (Europe airmail), £99 (Worldwide airmail). 55 North Ltd, Waterloo Chambers, 19 Waterloo Street, Glasgow, G2 6AY Tel: 0141 22 22 100 Fax: 0141 22 22 177 Website: Twitter:


DISCLAIMER The publisher cannot accept responsibility for any unsolicited material lost or damaged in the post. All text and layout is the copyright of 55 North Ltd. Nothing in this magazine may be reproduced in whole or part without the written permission of the publisher. All copyrights are recognised and used specifically for the purpose of criticism and review. Although the magazine has endevoured to ensure all information is correct at time of print, prices and availability may change. This magazine is fully independent and not affiliated in any way with the companies mentioned herein. Scottish Local Retailer is produced monthly by 55 North Ltd.

© 55 North Ltd. 2023 ISSN 1740-2409.



Cover Story

Horizon Scandal


A TV drama on the Post Office’s faulty Horizon system has forced the government to act to bring justice and compensation to the postmasters caught up in the scandal. BY LIZ WELLS

“People who worked hard to serve their communities had their lives and their reputations destroyed through absolutely no fault of their own.” RISHI SUNAK



etailers caught up in the Horizon scandal can finally see light at the end of the tunnel after the UK government announced it is to introduce new legislation to make sure that those convicted as a result of the faulty IT system are swiftly “exonerated and compensated”. The move comes after recent ITV drama ‘Mr Bates vs The Post Office’ thrust the issue back into the spotlight. Between 1999 and 2015, the Post Office prosecuted 736 sub-postmasters and mistresses based on Horizon. More than 700 branch managers were given criminal convictions – only 93 of these convictions have been overturned. In Scotland, the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission (SCCRC) – which investigates possible miscarriages of justice – wrote to 73 potential victims of the Horizon scandal in 2020. As of December 2023, only 16 people had asked for their convictions to be reviewed. However, that number may rise in the coming weeks and months given the renewed publicity around the scandal. In November 2022 the SCCRC gave six people permission to appeal Horizon convictions in court. Of those initial six cases, five have so far been overturned. The other one is still waiting for an outcome. The government has now committed to making sure convictions are overturned later this year. Once the convictions have been quashed, individuals will be entitled to at least £600,000 in compensation. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said: “This is one of the greatest miscarriages of justice in our nation’s history. “People who worked hard to serve their communities had their lives and their reputations destroyed through absolutely no fault of their own. The victims must get justice and compensation.” In response, First Minister Humza Yousaf, said Scottish Ministers are keen to work with the UK Government to deal with the impact on subpostmasters convicted in Scotland, ensuring that a UK-wide approach is taken to exonerate those wrongfully convicted in Scottish courts. “Given the unique circumstances arising from the Post Office Horizon scandal, it is right that normal processes for appeals are set aside to ensure that justice can now be delivered for those whose lives were greatly impacted by their wrongful conviction,” Yousaf added.

WRONGFUL PROSECUTIONS The renewed interest in the scandal has also left Scotland’s Crown Office facing questions over its role in the wrongful prosecution of

Horizon Scandal

postmasters. Prosecutors in Scotland were told of issues with evidence in 2013, but did not stop pursuing cases until 2015. Scotland’s top law officer Lord Advocate Dorothy Bain KC recently appeared before the Scottish Parliament to answer questions about the scandal. She told MSPs: “It is simply wrong to assert that Crown Office officials knew that there were problems with the Horizon system… did nothing about it and continued to prosecute in the face of reported problems. That’s just not what happened.” Responding to questioning about why the Crown did not review previous cases or halt prosecutions earlier, Bain repeated that “responsibility lies with Post Office”. Bain also told MSPs she was “looking urgently” at the specialist reporting role of the Post Office in Scotland, adding that any investigation into allegations of criminality on the part of the Post Office will need to wait until after the UK-wide public inquiry “and the full scale of their actions is understood”. She also took the time to apologise to postmasters that were wrongfully convicted, saying: “I understand your anger and I apologise for the way you have been failed by trusted institutions and the criminal justice system and I stand beside you in your pursuit of justice.” The Metropolitan Police is also set to investigate the scandal, but a national investigation will only start once the public inquiry into the scandal has presented its findings, expected to be late next year. Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley has warned detectives will have to read “tens of millions of documents” to decide whether laws have been broken – probably taking until 2026 at least. Around 130 people affected by the scandal have come forward since the drama aired. Nick Read, Post Office Chief Executive, said: “We hope that the ITV drama will raise further awareness and encourage anyone affected who has not yet come forward to seek the redress and compensation they deserve.”

PEOPLE POWER The TV drama has also forced former Post Office Chief Executive Paula Vennells to hand back her CBE after a petition calling on her to do so attracted more than 1.2 million signatures. Meanwhile, Post Office Chairman Henry Staunton, who took up the post in December 2022, was told by the Business Secretary that he was to be replaced as a result of frustration at how the organisation has dealt with the fallout of the scandal. An interim chairman is to be appointed by the government in due course.

Cover Story

RAB THOMSON Former Scottish sub-postmaster Rab Thomson, from Clackmannanshire, said that trouble started brewing when the newly installed IT system began generating apparent shortfalls. He told Sky News: “As the time went on, it kept going up and up to £10,000, £15,000, up to £60,000. Panic set in.” Rab, who attempted to take his own life after being criminalised, said that when his case came to court he was told to confess to the allegations minutes before appearing in front of the judge to make life “easier” for his family. “I said: ‘No, no, no. I don’t want to plead guilty. I’ve not done anything wrong. I’ve told you this from day one.’” Rab had been due to have his miscarriage of justice claims heard at the Court of Criminal Appeal in February, but prosecutors confirmed on at the end of January that they were not going to object to his name being cleared.

LOUISE DAR Louise Dar began running her local post office in Lenzie, East Dunbartonshire, on the outskirts of Glasgow in 2014. The former sub-postmistress lost everything after being hounded over claims she had stolen £44,000. Louise, who was never convicted, is seeking compensation because she had to pay back every penny and has racked up debts that she and her family are still tackling. She told Sky: “They must have known. It’s disgusting. We sold our car to help things. “We were just lucky we had family that have supported us. My husband and I have just battled through all of it, and we’re still fighting to get there.”

MARY PHILP Mary Philp was sub-postmistress at the Post Office in Auchtermuchty, Fife when Horizon was introduced. Within a couple of months, the system showed money was missing. Daughter Myra told STV News: “In the end, we had put in £70,000 of our own money. It got to the stage where the attached retail shop could no longer sustain the Post Office counter. “No amount of telling the Post Office there’s something wrong with the system, did anything to help us.” In desperation, Mary hired a private detective in the hope that he could find other Horizon problems. In the summer of 2006, Post Office auditors arrived and suspended Mary, who was then 65 years old. She never worked again and died in 2018 without seeing any postmasters pardoned.







“I plan to invest the winnings back into my store and for a family holiday!”

“The winnings will go towards buying a range of energy-saving equipment for my store.”

“My JTI Business Advisor told me about the ‘Go For Gold’ Prize Draw, I couldn’t believe it when I got the phone call!”



“It was a huge surprise to receive the call.”

“It is incredibly exciting; I am very happy to have received the call.”







Win a Weekend in Their Boots with Cadbury FC Cadbury FC has launched Win a Weekend in Their Boots, a new campaign that gives consumers the chance to grab an all-inclusive match day experience. The new promo runs until March across a range of tablet, multipack, bag, single and biscuit products. Entrants can also win a partner club shirt or one of more than 2,000 £10 or £5 gift vouchers.

Shoppers can ‘go for gold’ with Green Cuisine Birds Eye Green Cuisine has launched a new onpack promotion as part of its partnership with Team GB ahead of the Paris Olympics. Running until August, the promo offers daily prizes and features across the brand’s five hero products. Shoppers can win family sports sessions that will let them have a bash at archery, kayaking, golf, cycling, shooting, sports climbing or board sports.

Fisherman’s Friend runs ‘24 for price of 22’ promo Fisherman’s Friend is aiming to help convenience retailers maximise sales during the cold and flu season. Cases of 24 boxes of Fisherman’s Friend for the price of 22 are available exclusively through cash & carry wholesale depots while stocks last. The offer follows a year of strong growth for the lozenge and pastilles market, which has seen value sales increase +30% across all channels combined.

New look for Halls Halls has rolled out a new visual identity that sees the medicated confectionery brand’s range unified with one common design. The new look aligns with the brand’s global image and is intended to convey bold freshness, invigoration and clarity, as well as broaden the relevance and resonance of the brand to a range of shoppers across a range of occasions. The

Product News SUPERCHARGE YOUR SOFT DRINKS SALES – P40 SPORTS & ENERGY Extreme sports fans can win a trip to the USA

Monster Energy unveils X-citing new promo Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) has launched a brand-new X Games experience promotion for its Monster Energy brand, to help retailers tap into Monster fans’ love of extreme sports. The X Games has grown to be one of the world’s biggest extreme sports competitions, with both winter and summer events followed by millions of fans worldwide. It includes skateboarding, BMX, snowboarding, skiing, motocross and more. Live now until the end of April, the new X Games promotion runs across Monster Original and Monster Zero Sugar. Extreme sport fans can scan QR codes on in-store promotional materials or enter online for a chance to

win a VIP trip to the Summer X Games in the USA. The lucky winner will get a pair of exclusive VIP tickets to the Games, with access to Monster’s VIP fan site and some of the Monster athletes, the annual X-Fest music festival, and the X Games after party, as well as three nights’ free accommodation and return long-haul travel. Promotional POS kits that feature the Monster cans alongside some of Monster’s own X Games athletes are available. Convenience retailers can request the POS materials, along with digital assets for use on social media, from the website. They can also enter a Monster merchandise competition on until the end of March.


Mars Wrigley reveals Easter range Mars Wrigley has unveiled its 2024 Easter line-up, which features a total of eight new products alongside a host of returning favourites. The traditional chocolate egg category is now worth £246m and Mars Wrigley has launched five new eggs to try and take a bigger bite out of the lucrative Easter market. The Skittles Milk Chocolate Egg with Skittles Bag, Twix Large Egg with Twix Bar; M&M’s Mix Extra Large Egg with Milk Chocolate Bag of M&M’s and Peanut Bag of M&M’s; and Maltesers Extra Large Egg with treat bag all have a £5.70 RSP. They are joined by the Galaxy Truffles Mini Eggs Extra Large Easter Egg (RSP £8.40). The confectionery giant has also rolled out two new giant eggs. The Galaxy Caramel Giant Easter Egg (RSP £12.60) features a chocolate shell filled with caramel pieces while the Maltesers Assorted Truffles Luxury Egg (RSP £12.75) includes, as one might suspect, a variety of chocolate truffles. Maltesers Easter Mix (RSP £5.85) completes the NPD lineup and offers three Maltesers Bunnies, six Maltesers Mini Bunnies and three packs of Maltesers Fun Size. Accompanying the NPD, 18 products are returning for 2024, including a number of Easter eggs including the Maltesers Truffles Luxury Egg range, Galaxy Ripple and Maltesers Extra Large Eggs.


Oreo powers up for a-maze-ing Pac-Man partnership Oreo has teamed-up with legendary 1980s video game Pac-Man to release six Oreo Pac-Man Special Edition cookies, complete with special-edition packaging. Cookies will have fans powering up their snack game, as they can scan each one to unlock exclusive gaming experiences or enter the barcode from any participating pack to be in with a chance of winning a Pac-Man-related prize. These include a playable Mini Oreo Pac-Man arcade; an Oreo Pac-Man arcade cabinet; and a holiday to Japan, to spend a week in the home of Pac-Man with a visit to Bandai Namco’s new gaming centre.

brand’s flavour range will remain unchanged.






PVM scores twice at Product of the Year awards Confectionery giant Perfetti Van Melle is celebrating after both Fruit-tella Curiosities and Mentos Pure Fresh Gum were

CONFECTIONERY Iconic chocolate brand marks 200 years with a raft of activities

Cadbury celebrates bicentenary

winners at the 2024 Product of the Year awards. Mentos Pure Fresh Gum launched in a firstof-its-kind paperboard bottle

Cadbury has kicked off a year of celebrations to mark its 200th anniversary with the return of oldschool Dairy Milk packaging and the launch of a new TV advert. Limited-edition 180g Cadbury Dairy Milk Bars (RSP £2) and 95g £1.35 PMPs are available in seven different collectable designs, featuring packaging from as far back as 1915 and running right up to the present day. Shoppers from every generation should be able to recognise the Dairy Milk bar from their childhood, with the inside of each pack illustrated with artwork documenting some of the brand’s milestone moments.

The bars launch alongside a new TV ad, ‘Generations of Generosity,’ that takes viewers through 200 years of British life, beginning in 1824 and fast forwarding through history as the story of a little girl buying her mum a bar of Dairy Milk for her birthday is retold. As part of the celebrations, Cadbury Hot Chocolate has launched a new promotion that gives shoppers the chance to win either £2,000 in cash or one of 200 limited-edition Cadbury ‘Chunk’ Mugs. The promotion is supported with out-of-home advertising, influencer communications, email comms and social media activity.

format in November 2022, while Fruit-tella Curiosities was new to market last year, representing the brand’s latest foray into jellies.

Batchelors launches retailer prize draw To mark the release of the new Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom film, Batchelors is giving independent retailers the chance to win a movie night bundle. The prize includes a

On top of its anniversary activities, the Mondelez brand also recently announced the return of its shell eggs for the upcoming Easter season.

portable projector, a £100 online retailer gift card and a £50 online takeaway voucher. To enter, retailers need to buy three cases of eligible Batchelors products before 1 March from Bestway, or

SOFT DRINKS New design is both retro and modern

Pepsi nods to its past with major brand overhaul

Pepsi is unveiling a complete rebrand in March, with new pack designs for all formats that are designed to attract younger shoppers, while retaining existing customers. The rebrand will create a consistent identity across the Pepsi Max, diet, regular and flavoured cola ranges, with new packaging visuals, in-store materials and displays. The new packs will be supported by TV, radio, out-of-home and experiential marketing activities. Furthermore, flexible and animated visual assets will let retailers create custom point of sale displays and personalised digital campaigns, with the new branding easily adaptable both in-store and online. Ben Parker, Britvic Retail Commercial Director in Great Britain, commented: “This rebrand will help retailers maximise sales by sparking a renewed interest in the brand.”


Redesign for Signature range Scandinavian Tobacco Group UK has unveiled a contemporary redesign for its Signature cigar range. The new simple but smart design appears on packs of Signature Blue, Signature Original and Signature Red Filter and are available to retailers now. Newly designed packs have been upgraded to full colour on all sides and the overall design has been simplified, with more focus added to the leaf icon to emphasise the unique nature of the product.

before 19 February from Unitas.

New year, new gear Sandwich brand Urban Eat has launched a new on-pack promotion that gives consumers the chance to win hundreds of tech-heavy prizes. Running until 29 March, the promotion is supported by social media content and in-store POS. A total of 700 prizes are up for grabs, including iPhones, iPads and wireless Bluetooth headphones, along with trainers, instant cameras, keep cups, water bottles and music streaming vouchers.

Goodfella’s grand prize Frozen pizza brand Goodfella’s has launched a new on-pack promotion where shoppers can win a £1,000 Love To Shop voucher. The promo runs until April across the brand’s Thin, Deep, Takeaway and Gluten-Free pizzas as well as its Pizza Pocket range. A total of 100,000 prizes are up for grabs, including free pizza for a year, one free pizza, £1 off any Goodfella’s pizza, and £10 entertainment vouchers.





Spicy Smirnoff Smirnoff has extended its flavoured vodka range with the launch of a new Spicy Tamarind variant. The new 30% ABV flavour is available in 70cl bottles with an RSP of £18.50. Described as “a bold and distinctive taste experience,” the hot and tangy vodka is infused with tamarind, Mexican chillis and a hint of lemon. The launch is supported by a £3.5m marketing campaign that includes social media, digital and out-of-home activities.

Generation Z leading lowalcohol charge Young people are the biggest consumers of low- and noalcohol alternatives, according to the Portman Group’s sixth annual survey of UK drinking habits. A poll of 2,197 adults found that nearly half (44%) of 18–24-yearolds surveyed considered themselves either an occasional or regular drinker of alcohol alternatives in 2023. This marks a considerable increase from the previous year’s 31%.

Jump Ship opens alcoholfree brewery Jump Ship Brewing, which says it’s Scotland’s first non-

Off-TradeNews THE POWER OF PRICE-MARKED PACKS – P44 RTDs New range comes as premium canned cocktails see massive sales surge

Global Brands launches new RTDs Global Brands has unveiled be., a premium range of 8.4% ABV canned cocktails. The be. range launches with five of the UK’s most popular cocktails including Passion Fruit Martini, Pina Colada and Strawberry Daiquiri (all 200ml) – all of which are nitro infused for a smooth, velvety texture. They roll out alongside a pre-shaken Margarita and a sparkling Paloma (both 250ml) to meet growing demand for tequila and tequila-based cocktails. All have an RSP of £3 per can. The launch is supported with a major trade and consumer marketing campaign that includes PR, digital, social media and outof-home activities. It comes with the GB off-trade RTD category currently worth £529m and increasing 22% year on year. Premium branded cocktail cans are helping to fuel this growth with a 36% increase in sales.

alcoholic brewing company, has opened a new purposebuilt 20 hectolitre brewery in Midlothian. The business has already won awards for its small-batch releases and the new site will allow it to quadruple production in the face of growing demand. Retailers should email for stock enquiries.

Guatemalan rum unveils debut global campaign Diageo’s Zacapa rum brand has launched its first-ever global marketing campaign, ‘Lips to Soul’. The campaign is spearheaded by a short film inspired by the landscape of Guatemala that reflects the history of the brand. It is supported with a mix of digital out-of-home advertising, TV, PR, events, and paid social media activities.





Love Drinks has tipped 2024 to be the year of the margarita with the news that award-winning tequila brand Neurita has joined its roster. Launched in October 2022 and specially crafted for margaritas, Neurita was voted ‘Best Flavoured Tequila’ at this year’s World Tequila Awards. Made using Mexican agave tequila blanco, the liquid is infused in the UK with real fruit extracts and botanicals. The Neurita Tequila Blanco range is available 70cl bottles (RSP £36.70) and includes three variants: Citrus, infused with fresh Sicilian orange and tangerine fruit extracts; Rosa, infused with real raspberry, strawberry and pomegranate fruit extracts; and Picante, infused with Scotch Bonnet chilli, green chilli and tangerine extracts. All three are 35% ABV.

Beefeater 24 has launched a new pack design that has improved sustainability credentials. Still made from red glass, new packs have a 90% plastic reduction on the closure and back label, as well as 30% less aluminium and 22% less glass. The new bottle is taller than the previous version to stand out on shelves and the label is sliced at a 24-degree angle to represent Beefeater’s 24-hour steeping of the botanicals and the more selective cut in distillation taken to create Beefeater 24. The new packs of Beefeater 24 (ABV 45%) are available now.

It’s margarita time, says Love Drinks

New look for Beefeater 24




Seven single malts Single Malts of Scotland has brought seven new bottlings to the market, comprising three Reserve Casks and four A Marriage Of Casks. Reserve

FLAVOURED SPIRITS Absolut’s honey-flavoured vodka is exclusive to the UK

Absolut-ely buzzing

Casks Parcel 11 offers three whiskies from Ardmore, Caol Ila and an unnamed Orkney distillery. All are 48% ABV and have RSPs of £69.95 or less.

Pernod Ricard has unveiled Absolut Hunni (ABV 38%, RSP £22), a brand-new flavoured vodka exclusive to the UK. Launched as an alternative to fruit-led flavoured vodkas and made with natural flavours only, Absolut Hunni contains no added sugar and delivers a distinct flavour of golden honey. The spirit, Pernod Ricard says, provides a smooth, sweet taste that “mixes perfectly” with lemonade. With bold black and yellow stripes reminiscent of a honeybee, the bottle’s design sets it apart from the rest of the Absolut portfolio and offers a considerable degree of on-shelf standout.

The launch will be supported by media, influencer and PR activities, as well as POS in both stores and the on-trade. Ian Peart, Commercial Director for Pernod Ricard UK, commented: “Absolut Hunni is our Queen Bee for 2024, providing flavoured vodka fans with a new and exciting flavour profile to sip and enjoy with friends. “This new addition to the Absolut range has been designed to be enjoyed with lemonade, making elevating at-home occasions super simple.” After launching exclusively in Tesco last month, Absolut Hunni will roll out across the wider off-trade in April.

The Marriage Of Casks series has Speyside, Islay, Imperial and Ardmore malts that are priced from £215 to £850.

Celtic whisky French whisky brand Celtic Whisky Distillerie has launched Gwalarn Celtic Malt, a blend of three single malts from across the Celtic world, described as “a rigorous selection of Scottish whiskies, with the character of German malts and the finesse of the best French single malts, formulated by the distillery’s

WHISKY New bottles take inspiration from brand’s original illustration

Famous Grouse celebrates RSPB partnership with new design The Famous Grouse has unveiled a new limitededition bottle design to mark its 15-year collaboration with the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB). Since 2008, the partnership has helped to plant 150,000 trees, improve 85,000 acres of land and, most importantly, create new homes for grouse. The limited-edition wrap was designed by Edinburghbased artist and animator Nuria Boj and takes inspiration from the illustration by Phillipa Gloag – daughter of The Famous Grouse founder Matthew Gloag – that still graces the brand’s bottles. Commemorating The Famous Grouse’s commitment to wildlife conservation, the back label displays the RSPB logo alongside a message outlining the collaboration. It also features a QR code offering an interactive experience for drinkers to learn more about the partnership. By scanning the code, consumers can explore the history and shared initiatives behind the 15-year commitment. This is the first time that the brand has teamed up with an artist for a pack design and is also the first bottle that nods to the RSPB partnership. Consumers can visit to find out more about the partnership, Nuria Boj, and sleeve recycling recommendations. The Famous Grouse limited-edition bottle is available now with an RSP of £17.75.


Suntory unveils gin for spring House of Suntory’s Roku Gin has launched Roku Sakura Bloom Edition, a limited-edition gin inspired by the Sakura flower and Japan’s spring cherry blossom festival. The gin offers a soft and elegant, sweet floral taste, layered with hints of saltiness from the blossom leaves. It is an articulation of the Japanese concept of shun, the moment when nature is at its peak in flavour and freshness. Roku Sakura Bloom Edition (ABV 43%) has an RSP of £33 and is the first release in Roku Gin’s Festival Collection, a global series inviting gin drinkers to experience the pinnacle of every season.

expert Cellar Master”. Gwalarn Celtic Malt is available in the UK in 70cl bottles from Paragon Brands, RSP £53.49.

Scotch gives UK economy £7bn boost The contribution of the Scotch whisky industry to the UK economy reached £7.1bn in 2022, according to a new report by the Scotch Whisky Association. The report also found that the industry supports 66,000 jobs across the UK – 41,000 in Scotland – and is now responsible for generating £3 in every £100 of Scotland’s total Gross Value Added.

Squaring the circle A complaint against Asahi’s Super Dry beer has not been upheld by the alcohol industry’s Independent Complaint Panel. The complainant thought a “zero-like” figure on the bottle might imply the beer was alcohol free. The Panel noted that the Japanese Kanji character was a square, not a circle and decided most people wouldn’t think it a zero alcohol reference.



Inside Business

Above & Beyond Awards 2024


LOCAL RETAILING The shortlist for SLR’s inaugural Above and Beyond Awards has been published as we celebrate the true superstars of this remarkable sector.


e asked, and man have you delivered! The judging panel was blown away by the strength and diversity of the entries received as part of SLR’s inaugural Above and Beyond Awards that celebrate the outstanding efforts and achievements of team members in stores across Scotland. From life-saving sales assistants to business-boosting supervisors, motivating managers and caring community champions, 2024’s sparkling crop of shortlisted finalists are all true heroes – each and every one routinely going above and beyond the call of duty and making an invaluable difference to the stores in which they work, to their colleagues, to their customers and to the communities that they serve. The passion, drive and innovative spirit displayed by our shortlist is quite simply astounding – with some entries having quite literally brought the judging panel to tears. Set to be held on 13 March at The Corinthian Club in Glasgow, SLR’s Above & Beyond Awards will shine a light on these shop floor saviours and give them the recognition and thanks that they so richly deserve.



Above & Beyond Awards 2024

Inside Business


Kim Henderson Elaine McCann Tracey Doran Sophie Skelton Snehal Magadum

Manager Manager Supervisor Supervisor Manager

Racetrack Rutherglen (Premier) Watson’s Grocers, Moniaive Pinkie Farm, Musselburgh Aramark Leuchars (Premier) Girish’s Premier, Barmulloch


Claire Fleming Kerry Ritchie Bryan Gibson Tanya Wilson

Manager Manager Manager Manager

Spar Portland Street, Troon Spar Bighty Avenue, Glenrothes Spar Barnchurch road, Culloden Spar Eastriggs

Assistant Manager Sales Assistant Accounts Manager Supervisor

Broadway Convenience Store, Edinburgh Spar, Scourie Spar Renfrew Spar Boswell Park

Manager Manager Delivery driver and handyman

Spar Logan Drive, Troon Day Today, Shotts Premier Whitehills, Banff

Manager Owner Manager

Spar Portland Street, Troon Day Today, Saracen Day Today, Shotts


Sophie Williams Charlie MacRae Waseem Sadiq Chelsea Dunlop LONG SERVICE AWARD

Yvonne Wilson Alison Lennon John Stephen ASTONISHING ACT

Claire Fleming Usman Bashir Alison Lennon



Inside Business

SLR Awards 2024

19 JUNE 2024



With the SLR Awards returning to their traditional slot in June, there is not long to go until the entry deadline.


he return of the SLR Awards to their traditional summer slot in June this year means an earlier awards entry deadline – and time is beginning to run out if you want to be part of this fantastic celebration of our sector and have the chance of being among the winners this year. The official entry deadline is 21 February so it’s time to start planning those entries, if you haven’t done so already! “We’re delighted to be bringing the SLR Awards home and returning them to their traditional slot in June,” said SLR Publisher Antony Begley. “We know that the June slot worked better for everyone, and we have been overwhelmed by the positive response we’ve had from across the entire industry on our decision to return to June. “Our sponsors have been fantastic, and we’re delighted to welcome back so many of our regular partners as well as bringing on some new sponsors for this year. The earlier slot also means we don’t clash with so many other industry events which in turn means retailers have some mental space to focus on their entries and make sure they given themselves the best possible chance of being among the winners and joining us on what I’m sure will be a fantastic night on 19 June. “Everyone at SLR is excited and looking forward to another great event and another fantastic celebration of this amazing industry. I would ask all retailers to get cracking on their entries and get them with us by 21 February.” As always, the SLR Awards will deliver a unique judging model where Publisher Antony Begley visits every single store in the shortlist, delivering a level of judging consistency that means all stores are judged fairly and transparently. Awards judging visits will again be unannounced to ensure the judging team see your stores exactly the way your customers do. Best of luck – and see you in June!



Entry deadline:

21 FEB 2024

Shortlist announced:

MARCH 2024

To find out more or to enter, visit:

SLR Awards 2024

Inside Business

CATEGORY LIST IN-STORE CATEGORIES Q Bread & Bakery Retailer of the Year Q Confectionery Retailer of the Year Q Food-to-Go Retailer of the Year Q Forecourt Retailer of the Year Q Fresh & Chilled Retailer of the Year Q Newstrade Retailer of the Year Q Off-Trade Retailer of the Year Q Scottish Brands Retailer of the Year Q Soft Drinks Retailer of the Year Q Tobacco Retailer of the Year IN-ACTION CATEGORIES Q Community Retailer of the Year Q New Store of The Year Q Refit of the Year Q Sustainability Retailer of the Year Q #ThinkSmart Innovation Award Q Unsung Hero of the Year Q Special Recognition Q Team of the Year

Scottish Grocers’ Federation



Inside Business


TIME TO GIVE RTDs THE SPACE THEY DESERVE? RTDs are undergoing a major period of reinvigoration, according to the latest category data, so is it time you gave more space to the category in-store and focused on the fastest-selling lines? BY ANTONY BEGLEY

GB RTD sales in last year: Convenience

UP 30.2% Mults

DOWN 11.7%


ith electricity prices sky high and chilled space at an absolute premium, choosing what you stock in your fridges is mission critical. With every facing in a chiller coming at a cost, every facing is under pressure to deliver sales and profit in your store – and if it’s not, it should be. Efficient, profitable retailing relies on frequent range and space allocation reviews to make sure that your chillers are filled with fast-moving products and to help weed out the lines that just aren’t cutting it. This is true across all chilled product categories – does any store really need 17 rosé wine SKUs? – but it’s particularly important in a category that had fallen off the radar in recent years for many stores: RTDs. Having once been the darling of the off-trade section of your store, their star had been waning for years. The latest category data, however, shows that the RTD category is enjoying a remarkable renaissance of late. “Having spent a decade in Spain, I was astonished when I returned to the UK and drove around local retailing outlets in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee to find that, other than Dragon Soop, the RTD category was pretty much as I had left it in 2007,” says Andy Ferguson who, working with Red Star Brands, is the man spearheading the Four Loko brand in Scotland as success grows across the UK. “I knew straight away there was an opportunity.”

RTDS UP 20% So how is the RTD category performing? Well, the fact that RTD sales by volume are up 30% over the last year [IRI, 12 months to Nov 2023] and nobody seems to have particularly noticed tells a story all by itself. Just as interesting, the supermarkets are actually seeing declining volumes over the same period, down 11.7%. Those two statistics alone should be enough to make most local retailers sit up and take note. “It’s a strange one for me,” says Ferguson. “Normally with stats that mind blowing, you’d be expecting to see the trade press running endless articles and retailers beating down a path to your door. To be fair, we are seeing more and more demand for our brand, Four Loko, and we are seeing some amazing growth, but it’s odd that the sector seems to be slow to wake up to the RTD opportunity 2.0 – retailers only need to check their own EPOS data, the evidence is right there... review and refresh.”

CHANGING MARKET The latest IRI data also shows, however, that the face of the UK RTD market is changing dramatically. WKD remains the biggest brand in the market, worth over £10.6m, but in line with many of the other well-established brands, it’s losing value. WKD is down 15% in the last year by value, Jack Daniel’s is down 12% and Gordon’s & Schweppes is down 2%. On the flip side of that coin, AU Vodka is up 279%, Four Loko is up 85% and Dragon Soop is

“The category is in volume growth by more than 30% in convenience. Is that fact reflected in their stores and in their chillers?” 26



up 28%. The RTD times, they are most definitely a-changin’. When you look at convenience data specifically, the transformation is even more striking. Dragon Soop is the number one player with 18% value share, up 29% in the last year, while AU Vodka now sits in the number three spot with 12% value share, up 221% in 2023. And already at number four is Four Loko with 7% value share, up 77% over the year. “There’s no question that the RTD market has changed substantially,” says Ferguson. “Brands like Four Loko, Dragon Soop and AU Vodka are driving the real growth. I’m particularly pleased with Four Loko’s performance and our position as a top-five brand in GB convenience. You have to remember that this is from a standing start, a brand-new product. Within just a couple of years we’re now the number five RTD in GB convenience.

STORMING SCOTLAND Drill down even further to Scottish sales, however, and the picture gets even rosier both for the RTD category as a whole and for Four Loko as a brand. “When you look at Scottish-specific data, Four Loko is actually the number two brand,” comments Ferguson. “In the UK we started in Scotland so that’s where the majority of our sales have come from so far, but it’s a pretty impressive achievement. In addition, in Four Loko White we have the fastest-selling RTD SKU in GB convenience and we have another eight SKUs in the top 12.”

Inside Business

“We are seeing more and more demand for Four Loko and we are seeing some amazing category growth but it’s odd that the sector seems to be slow to wake up to the RTD opportunity 2.0.”

Inside Business


Only AU RTD has added more value contribution in the last year, despite the fact that Four Loko is mainly only in Scotland and AU has been available across the UK. “Distribution remains our key challenge,” says Ferguson. “We know that when retailers stock it, it flies. So, all we have to do is get them to stock it. We are having some success on that front and have added over 10,000 new distribution points in the last 12 months, about half of them down south and the rest in Scotland. “That will massively help us continue to grow sales and profits for retailers. Recent figures show that we’ve only got weighted distribution so far of 16.2%. Compare that with AU which has 54% distribution. Then look at the value we add per distribution point. We’re adding £784,000-worth of sales compared to Au’s £289,000. To put that another way, Four Loko is delivering three times the value with one-third of the distribution. “We are confident that as we grow distribution points, we’ll see volume and value continue to accelerate and that can only be good news for retailers stocking the brand.”

KEEPING AHEAD “Red Star Brands, the company that distributes Four Loko has a cracking record of really getting under the skin of product categories and working with people who really understand local retailing and how it works,” says Ferguson. “They have a strengthening track record of bringing US disruptor drinks and snack brands to the UK and in Four Loko we have a brand with a real point of difference. It’s an 8.5% boldflavoured RTD in 440ml cans. No PMP, no multipack. Importantly, it’s a vodka-based drink with no energy or stimulant ingredients.” Ferguson is also very aware of the need to keep the category fresh and exciting for today’s RTD customers. “The customer base for RTDs has changed and we know that flavours and NPD are key,” 28


he explains. “The Four Loko range started out with just four lines but the range now extends to nine and we will have more NPD launching early this year. That helps drive excitement and trial and brings new customers into the category and importantly, your store.. “But the number one challenge I would put to local retailers is to take another look at their chillers and how much space they are dedicating to RTDs. The category is in volume growth by more than 30% in convenience. Is that fact reflected in their stores and in their chillers? “And I’m not advocating just expanding the space for the sake of it. With electricity bills the way they are, every facing you have in the chiller needs to be earning its keep. That means stocking the fastest-selling lines, stripping out the dust gatherers and giving the category and the key products the space they need to deliver the sales and profits you need. “There’s a clear demand for it from consumers and the space dedicated to the category in-store needs to reflect that.”

“Distribution remains our key challenge but we are having some success on that front and have added over 10,000 new distribution points in the last 12 months.”

Inside Business

GroceryAid Scotland

GROCERYAID SCOTLAND ACHIEVEMENTS DRIVE MORE SUPPORT IN SCOTLAND The remarkable efforts of GroceryAid’s Scottish committee are having a direct impact on the number of industry colleagues the charity is able to support north of the border.


nce largely unknown in Scotland, the GroceryAid charity has been revitalised in recent years under the joint Chairmanship of Peter Steel and Jim Harper, ably supported by an evergrowing Scottish Committee representing all facets of the food and drink retailing sector in Scotland. After years of raising little or no funds north of the border, the newlook GroceryAid Scotland has continued to move through the gears with a series of fantastic initiatives, including the flagship Checkout Scotland music festival. The outstanding news is that the team has now broken the £100,000 fundraising barrier for the first time – and plans are well underway to build on that success in the future. Even more important, the Committee’s efforts mean that more colleagues than ever in the Scottish convenience and grocery retailing industry are benefitting from the financial, practical and emotional support that GroceryAid offers, entirely free of charge.

GROWING DEMAND The increased fundraising achievements are more welcome and necessary than ever thanks to the legacy of the pandemic – but the work of the

Committee has also meant greater awareness of the charity and how it can support colleagues in need of a little help. Joint Chairman Peter Steel said: “There’s no doubt that the economic challenges we all face are playing a part in the growth in demand for the support that GroceryAid can offer. But we also believe that the efforts of the Scottish Committee over the last few years in raising awareness of the charity up here in Scotland have meant that more industry colleagues now know they have somewhere to turn to when they need some support, in whatever way that may be.” GroceryAid CEO Kieran Hemsworth revealed at a recent meeting of the Committee that the charity had seen a 56% increase in the instances of support in the six months from April to September. Thanks to the efforts of fundraisers, the charity has been able to rise to the challenge. For example, GroceryAid was able to provide a £150 School Essentials Grant in June last year to 15% more parents and carers than the previous year. Hemsworth also said that there had been a 338% increase in people seeking business debt advice – a service that GroceryAid offers for free to independent local retailers – highlighting the fact that it is not just individual colleagues who are facing tough challenges.





Join in GroceryAid Day and help us tell as many colleagues as possible about the free and confidential support they can access. Add to Calendar

Free and Confidential Support Call the Helpline on

08088 021122 or visit


Product News & Media Watch

Costa Latte RTD PMPs CCEP CCEP has added two price-marked packs to its Costa Coffee ready-todrink Latte range. The 250ml RTD cans of Costa’s bestselling Coffee Latte and Caramel Latte variants, price marked at £1.49, are available now. The launch is supported by a new marketing campaign (see Media Watch). POS materials are available to retailers via to help generate excitement in-store around the PMPs.

Imperial raises blu bar

Häagen-Dazs Bites General Mills Salted Caramel Bites feature salted caramel ice cream with a caramel sauce core and wrapped in a golden caramel white chocolate coating, while Chocolate Bites offer chocolate ice cream, a chocolate sauce core and a rich, crunchy chocolate coating. Both come in boxes of eight and are available now in grocery; they land in wholesalers later this year.

With continued consumer demand for disposable vapes, Imperial has launched its new and improved blu bar 1000 device. Available now with a £5.99 RSP, the fully compliant blu bar 1000 range offers up to 1,000 puffs per device and features blu Flavour Tech mesh heater technology to deliver long-lasting, strong bursts of flavour. The redesigned casing means that the liquid level is visible through the translucent mouthpiece, making it much easier for users to see when the liquid is running low. A new removable battery means users can now twist, pop and release it, making it easy to safely dispose of the used battery at a local collection point. Furthermore, a new security lock feature ensures the device is fully protected when not in use.

Ready meals Pollen + Grace

Bamboo Balsam Tissues with Aloe Lotion The Cheeky Panda

Available now from CLF Distribution, an initial three-strong range includes Rich Aubergine + Lentil Moussaka, Saag Aloo Potato Pie, and Thai Red Vegetable Curry. On-pack messaging tell consumers the number of different plants meals contain through a points-based system. The launch is supported by influencer partnerships, PoS, social content, supper clubs and more.



The ultra-gentle tissues RSP at £2.30, with each box containing 64 tissues. They are available to order now in outers of 12 packs. The tissues are 100% sustainable, made from FSC-certified bamboo, vegan friendly, cruelty free and petroleum derivatives free. For every pack sold, one penny will be donated to WWF to support conservation work.

Eight flavours are available at launch, including Blueberry Ice, Strawberry Ice, Watermelon Ice, Banana Ice, Mint, Grape, Tropical Mix and Blueberry Cherry, with more due to roll out in the spring. The launch will be supported by promotions in selected wholesalers, a suite of retailer merchandise and a fresh new look and feel to the blu bar Knowledge Hub ( to drive awareness of the new product. The updated Knowledge Hub will provide retailers with everything they need to know about the blu bar 1000 range, including helpful articles, video content and quizzes, and the chance to win big prizes. Imperial will further boost brand awareness through a number of new multi-year partnerships with music venues and arenas.

Thai cookery ingredients Blue Elephant

Cadbury Milkshakes Müller Yogurt & Desserts

Thai cuisine brand Blue Elephant has launched a range of more than 100 products in the UK. The range includes a Pad Thai Cooking Set (300g), Green Curry Paste (available in a 70g pouch and 110g and 220g jars), Red Curry Cooking Set (95g), Yellow Curry Cooking Sauce (300g) and Coconut Cream (165ml and 400ml tins). Retailers should visit blueelephantthailand. for all stock enquiries.

Both Cadbury Creamy Chocolate Milkshake and Cadbury Creamy Chocolate Caramel Flavour Milkshake are available as 250ml singles from Sainsbury’s now ahead of a wider roll out in March. Both SKUs have a three-month ambient shelf life. The launch is supported by outof-home advertising and PR, with a wider multimedia campaign kicking off later in the year.

Product News & Media Watch Nik Naks Rib ‘N’ Saucy 45g Grab Bag KP Snacks

Soreen Lift Bar singles Samworth Brothers

The launch follows the news that Nik Naks was KP’s fastest-growing brand in 2023, growing 47.2% year on year, and its number one Everyday Value brand. It combines the success of Rib ‘N’ Saucy as the second-most-popular Nik Naks flavour (worth nearly £12m RSV) and the Grab Bag format, which continues to perform well within the convenience and impulse markets.

OCB Rice Papers Republic Technologies

Following the launch of Lift Bar multipacks last spring, Soreen has unveiled two new single variants: Blueberry and Banana. The 42g soft baked bars (RSP £1.10) contain fewer than 140 calories and a naturally occurring source of vitamin B12. The launch is backed by Soreen’s biggest-ever NPD marketing campaign, which runs across video on demand, Netflix and digital, combined with largescale sampling activity.


Even more epic KP is extending last year’s Epic Eats campaign to drive further awareness of its latest Bangin’ BBQ and Chip Shop Curry Sauce flavours. Running across radio and out-of-home sites until the end of April, the campaign will continue to support the growth of the Epic Eats range using the tagline ‘Epic Flavour, Epic Crunch, Epic Eats’.

Smiles mean meals Walkers Unbelievable! Vegan range PepsiCo

Organic and chlorine free, OCB Rice Papers are unbleached, ultra-thin and made from a blend of rice and organic hemp. Featuring 32 papers per pack, OCB Rice Papers is available in both Slim (RSP £1.10) and Slim & Tips (RSP £1.73). The launch comes with rolling papers the best-performing sector in tobacco accessories, growing at +12% and worth almost £72m in the convenience channel.

Walkers has unveiled three new vegan-friendly limited-edition meaty and cheesy flavours. Verified by The Vegan Society, the new Unbelievable! Vegan Flame Grilled Steak, Grilled Cheese Toastie, and BBQ Pork Ribs flavours are available now in 5x24g formats. Flame Grilled Steak and BBQ Pork Ribs flavours are also available in 65g £1.25 PMPs.

Kurkure Chilli Chatka PepsiCo

Zero Max Jac Vapour

Kurkure, one of the biggest snack brands in India and Pakistan, has added a Chilli Chatka flavour to its range of savoury snacks. Made with an aromatic blend of chilli, spices and lentil flour, Kurkure Chilli Chatka is available now in 80g £1.25 price-marked packs and 100g plain packs. The brand’s Masala Munch and Naughty Tomato flavours gained combined value sales of £723m in 2022.

This new flavour range for Jac Vapour’s Puff Box device uses “the latest in e-liquid technology to provide maximum throat hit with absolutely zero nicotine”. Zero Max refills (two per pack), equate to roughly 1,300 puffs and RSP at £5.59. JAC Vapour said using Puff Box and Zero Max was up to 50% cheaper than disposable vapes. Nine Zero Max flavours are available. Email for more information or to order.

Biscuit brand belVita has once again teamed up with FareShare to help fight food insecurity, as the ‘Give a Smile’ initiative returns for 2024. Through its partnership with the charity, belVita will donate up to 100,000 meals. Interactive billboards across the UK will recognise when people are smiling at them, with donations collected through ‘smiles’ registered.

Breaking news Coca-Cola Europacific Partners has launched a new brand campaign, ‘Lift up your Break,’ that encourages consumers to add an RTD Costa Coffee to a morning or lunchtime break. The campaign runs for three months and taps into Costa’s customer loyalty club members. Activities include social media, PR and outdoor advertising.

Nakd launch Snack bar brand nakd has launched a new digital and out-of-home campaign to boost awareness and drive purchase. The campaign includes social media placements, host-read podcast adverts with popular shows, and out-of-home digital advertising in commuter hubs and shopping centres. It is expected to generate a total of 135 million impressions.

Heated debate Weetabix has launched a new nationwide campaign that asks consumers “Do you Weetabix or Heatabix?” #Debatethebix encourages shoppers to claim their favourite serve – heated up for a warming start to the day or served with cold milk instead. The humorous campaign is supported with a £2m marketing investment.

for all the latest product news, head to





LIGHT INTO CHALLENGES Tobacco is still a ray of light for convenience in the current financial backdrop, despite a hostile political environment towards the category. BY ELENA DIMAMA


orth £14bn each year, the tobacco category continues to hold a significant amount of value for retailers, despite the financial challenges households

are facing. Scottish consumers have slightly different tobacco preferences to the rest of the UK, with the factory-made cigarettes (FMC) market accounting for 66% of all tobacco sales compared to 53% for the rest of the UK, according to EPoS data. What’s more, a shift towards low-priced propositions is witnessed across the entire tobacco category, with the trend particularly prevalent in Scotland, where 21.2% of FMC sales are in the value price sector and 27.1% of roll-your-own (RYO) sales are in the value price sector.

VALUE PREVAILS According to the ITUK Report on Trade, RYO accounts for nearly half of all tobacco sales, as shoppers look to cut down on their household spending. “As the cost-of-living crisis continues, it’s likely that the need for value products is going to continue to be a dominant trend in the category for some time, so retailers need to make sure they can cater for this demand by stocking the right product offering,” Tom Gully, Head of Consumer Marketing UK & Ireland at Imperial Tobacco, says. “With this in mind, we strongly advise that retailers check that they stock a wide range of leading roll-your-own brands, including Regal Signature, Riverstone and Players JPS, so that they are fully prepared for this continuing rise in demand for value tobacco products.” Seeking a familiar brand at a low price point is also a focus for tobacco shoppers. “Shoppers will 34


be keeping a keen eye out for any deals and value offers for the foreseeable future, so it is of key importance that retailers and their staff are well versed on what products they can offer while the demand for value is high.” Imperial Tobacco has also launched its new Players Max range, featuring cigarette sticks that are 12% longer in size to cater for this extra demand in value combined with quality.

CIGAR CHOICE “Whilst obviously not matching the sales volumes of cigarettes or RYO tobacco, cigars are an important part of the tobacco category for convenience retailers because they drive footfall in-store and particularly as a driver of profit in tills, as they typically offer up to three times the margin that cigarettes do,” Nataly Scarpetta, Marketing Manager at Scandinavian Tobacco Group UK (STG UK), explains. STG UK’s latest data shows that the total UK cigar category is worth £295m in annual sales and growing in value terms by 3.2% compared to the same time last year. Meanwhile, despite barely existing four years ago, the cigarillo subcategory is now worth over £111m in annual sales and is responsible for nearly half of total cigar volume sales. “I’m not sure the Ultra Value segment is particularly prevalent in cigars, but in general the value trend has certainly been around the cigar category for quite some time now, which is evidenced by the success of our Moments Blue brand,” Scarpetta notes. “In fact, our Moments 10’s packs are the biggest brand in the value-formoney segment and are well known amongst tobacco-selling retailers as a popular choice amongst those customers who are looking to save money.”

“With cigars, it’s more important to stock the right range rather than a big range, so we usually advise retailers to consider stocking the top two or three brands in each of the four cigar segments, as the top 10 biggest sellers overall account for well over 90% of total sales.” NATALY SCARPETTA, MARKETING MANAGER AT SCANDINAVIAN TOBACCO GROUP UK (STG UK)



SMOKE-FREE ILLUSIONS The UK government’s self-described intention to create the ‘first smokefree generation’ has been taking shape in the past weeks, with plans to introduce legislation so children turning fifteen this year or younger can never legally be sold tobacco. Unsurprisingly, a whopping 86% of convenience retailers said they believed the government’s proposed generational ban on tobacco products will have a negative impact on their business. Paul Cheema, Owner of Malcolm’s Convenience and Forecourt, Coventry, said at the time of the research: “The proposed tobacco ban will hit convenience retailers the hardest. We know from recent reports, and our own experiences, that violence or abuse towards shopkeepers is on the rise, with ID checks or refusal of sale often a common cause of this. It’s fair to say that the proposed ban would highly likely exacerbate this issue and drive a further increase in threatening behaviour against retailers.” Meanwhile, recent research from JTI showed that 6% of retailers state that their store has been negatively impacted due to the sale of illicit tobacco and vapes

by other businesses in the area, with 30% of retailers aware of one or more stores within a three-mile radius allegedly selling illicit products. In addition, 67% of retailers expect the proposed generational tobacco ban will lead to an increase in illicit tobacco activity. The research also reveals that 72% of retailers surveyed said they would welcome more regulation around the selling of legal tobacco and vaping products. Stricter penalties and fines, more frequent visits from trading standards and strengthening border controls to reduce the supply of illegal products into the UK were the most-common responses from retailers in terms of support needed to help tackle the issue of illicit tobacco. James Hall, Anti-Illicit Trade Manager, Imperial Tobacco UK & Ireland, explains: “Illicit trade remains a huge challenge within the category. In fact, figures show that 73% of smokers bought illicit tobacco within the last year (vs. 71% in 2021) and nearly four in ten consumers claimed that increased living costs had impacted their purchasing habits and where they now choose to buy ‘cheaper’ (illicit) tobacco).”

TOP TIPS FOR RETAILERS BY IMPERIAL TOBACCO Merchandising – Staying on top of any new trends within the tobacco category can be a great way to ensure maximum sales impact. Value products, for example, are much more popular at the moment than premium products, given that many consumers are looking to reduce spending, so retailers need to ensure they are responding to this trend in order to grow their sales.



Training – Both retailers and their staff should be fully trained and prepared to provide customers with a tailored and personalised experience if they want to build customer loyalty and ensure repeat visits to the store.





12.25* RRP

















*Based on ITUK RRP as of December 2023. For the avoidance of doubt, customers are free at all times to determine the selling price of their products. For Tobacco Traders Only.







Beer and Cider

KEEP WITH CRAFT The beer and cider category has endured a bumpy ride of late but craft beer is still performing strongly, with multipacks a key growth driver. BY ELENA DIMAMA

TIPS FOR RETAILERS BY BREWDOG Q Leverage the strength of familiar signpost brands to help shoppers easily navigate busy fixtures. Q Location is also key – when buying craft, 76% of men want chilled beer from the fridge in convenience stores. If chiller space is available, craft should be sited here. Q Focus on multi-packs as the key format, with the 4-pack can the most important format for craft beer and BrewDog shoppers.




eer and cider are, for many, cornerstones of the convenience retailing world and for good reason: they are all-year-round staples underpinned by a diverse portfolio and strong NPD. Overall, the beer category is valued at over £6.6bn in UK retail, and over the last 12 months, the total beer category has returned to value growth at +1.4%, according to Nielsen. The category is not out of the woods yet, as it has been down in volume by 4.8% for the same period due to inflationary price increases and it seems there is a long way ahead. Earlier in January, inflation rose surprisingly to 4%, with beer experiencing a 12.8% change in its average price over the 12 months to December 2023. A wet British summer in 2023 also resulted in a slight value decline with beer sales down by 0.6%, but that did not stop craft beer from enjoying another strong summer – up 3.3% compared to a year ago in the last 12 weeks. Mainstream lagers, on the other hand, saw the largest decline at -3.8% compared to a year ago, according to Nielsen.

THE CIDER FACTOR While beer might be on a bumpy road, partly due to rising costs in the alcohol category, the cider category is outperforming both lagers (-7.6%) and ales (-10.7%), according to Nielsen. “However, while the cider market is generally performing well in comparison to Beers, Wines, and Spirits, it’s worth noting that flavoured cider is down -9% and declining ahead of the total market,” Calli O’Brien, Head of Marketing at Aston Manor, notes. “Cider is the impulse drink of choice, with a third of shoppers only ever buying cider in cans. Therefore,

it is important that retailers provide greater choice for consumers by stocking both can and bottle formats.”

PRICE AND CONVENIENCE Alcohol tends to see a sales uplift in sales over the spring and summer period, with a specific focus on value and convenience. “Retailers must ensure they can respond to this by offering a 100% chilled range, stocking a wide range of options in cans and bottles,” O’Brien says. “If a store has limited chiller space, retailers should at least offer a good selection of flavoured ciders that are available chilled alongside top selling ciders. When a shopper buys cider on impulse, having it chilled and ready to drink are often more important than price, however, promotions still play an important role in communicating value for money that will help to win longer term customer loyalty.” Multipacks are also a key growth driver for the category, with the four-can pack remaining the most important craft beer format throughout 2023, with 47.4% share, according to Nielsen. “Cost of living will continue to be a concern for all grocery categories as we move into 2024, however, based on previous times of hardship, we have identified that shoppers seek premium treats in the off-trade, when finances are challenged,” Caitlin Brown, Category Executive, at BrewDog, adds. “This has been proven by the growth of Craft Beer during this last year and reinforced by our research which places quality (66%), taste (50%) and range (45%) as the top drivers to purchasing BrewDog, with well-priced at 29%. “These remain a priority as consumers cut back in other areas of their lives, reducing overall store spend in-store,” she adds.







Soft Drinks


A raft of flavour innovation and a renewed focus on energy has helped soft drinks remain amongst the top-selling categories.


oft drinks has remained in strong growth within independent and symbol stores, propelled by the sports and energy sub-sector and fruitflavoured carbonates. Last year, shoppers made more trips out of home to buy soft drinks, according to data from Kantar, with trip frequency up 7%.

ENERGY UP Sports and Energy has been a key part of the sector’s uplift, accounting for 68% of all growth and adding £144m to the category. In convenience, Sports and Energy is already the 40


top soft drinks category, accounting for 40% of all value sales and growing share (+3pts vs last year), according to Nielsen. “In addition to more trips, we’ve seen an increase in shoppers buying Energy Drinks through Independents & Symbols,” Red Bull says. “Last year three million shoppers purchased an Energy Drink in the channel (+25% vs last year), making it a key category to focus on in 2024.” The company adds: “We’re also seeing this trend play out within the wider market, and throughout the summer we saw weeks where Sports & Energy overtook Colas as the number

one category in value share within the total market. “Within this, Energy has been a key player, now accounting for 19% of all soft drink value (+2pts in share vs two years ago) and growth is showing no signs of slowing, so we expect this trend to continue this year.” Excitement is also key when it comes to communicating innovation, helping retailers and brands boost the category. Matt Gouldsmith, Channel Director, Wholesale, Suntory Beverage & Food GB&I explains: “We know from our conversations with retailers that the core range from big brands (such as Lucozade Energy)


Soft Drinks

that lead the segment, and the interest that new launches and flavours create, really help get shoppers excited.” Lucozade Energy has moved its 380ml single SKUs to 500ml bottles only, while also introducing a PMP variant, available for the first time in a 500ml format.

FLAVOURS AND WELLNESS The two top trends dominating the sector continue to be flavours and health. Within the category, flavoured carbonates are enjoying strong growth, worth £998m and growing 9.3% year on year, according to Nielsen. “Taste remains the top consideration in soft drinks purchases, and flavour innovations are becoming more complex as consumers look for new and interesting tastes, so we expect to see more unique products on shelf as the category grows,” Barr Soft Drinks Commercial Director, Jonathan Kemp, says. Innovation in flavours is playing a big role in category success, along with being able to offer sugar-free variants which boost brands’ health credentials. “Flavour innovation is crucial in keeping shoppers excited by soft drinks and at a time when the cost of living is rising, it’s important to offer new products from wellknown brands to help maintain basket spend,” Ben Parker, GB Retail Commercial Director at Britvic, explains. “We launched Tango Editions, a rotational sugar-free flavour series which combines bold tastes, bold liquids and bold pack designs to cater to this growing need.” Energy flavours are also a key part of the category’s innovation with Red Bull expecting the momentum to roll into 2024. “Last year, 71% of shoppers that were new to Energy Drinks bought a flavoured product, so a key part of the category to drive penetration,” the company says. “Red Bull is a driving force behind flavours in the market, with the Edition range now bought by 2.6 million shoppers and growing +£19.9m year on year.”

TOP TIPS FOR RANGING FROM RED BULL Q Start by getting the right amount of space per category. Sports & Energy is 35% of Soft Drinks – so take a look – have you given it over a third of the chiller? Q Don’t scrimp on facings for your best sellers. For example, Red Bull Energy Drink sells more than any other single serve soft drink in your chiller – it will be near impossible to keep this, and your other best sellers, perfectly chilled and available if they don’t have multiple facings. Q Put your best sellers at eye level – Red Bull signposts Energy and Coke does the same for Cola. That ‘power shelf’ at eye level should always highlight your best-selling and most iconic brands.



Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) is also boosting its energy offering, with the core Monster range still being led by the Original variant, however a new zero sugar line hit shelves in September. “We added four other launches to our range in 2023: Monster Lewis Hamilton Zero Sugar, Monster Juiced Aussie Lemonade, red berry-flavoured Monster Ultra Rosa and Monster Ultra Peachy Keen. And we have much more in the pipeline in 2024,” Amy Burgess, Senior Trade Communications Manager at CCEP, adds.



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Price-Marked Packs

SMALL BUT POWERFUL Price-marked packs are still crucial to convenience as inflationary pressures persist across the economy.

TIPS FOR RETAILERS BY BOBBY’S FOODS Q Bundle Deals Consider bundling complementary items as a value-added proposition. Q Limited-Time Offers Introduce periodic promotions to create urgency. Q Localised Promotions Align PMPs with regional preferences to enhance relevance.


he current economic uncertainty means consumers are savvier than ever before, which places pricemarked packs (PMPs) in an unrivalled position within convenience. Sold in smaller formats, they can have a positive effect on customer loyalty, offering both size and value for money. “Having surveyed both retailers and consumers, it was clear how important the £1 price-point is to both groups. Independent retailers can really come into their own, where they can offer great value for money,” Matt Smith, Marketing Director for Tayto Group, explains. “Instead of raising the headline price of our £1 PMPs, we have given retailers and customers what they want – and kept with the £1 price point – to demonstrate our commitment to delivering great consumer value whilst offering strong retailer margins. And 64% of consumers are willing to switch brands for a lower price, so value for money is key,” he adds.

Clearly a balance of making margins for retailers work and keeping sales robust is a priority for brands. Bobby’s Foods notes: “In the dynamic landscape of retail, where every purchase is scrutinised, PMPs have emerged as a beacon of value, offering a straightforward and impactful means for retailers to resonate with budget-conscious consumers. “The PMP opportunity for Scottish local retailers is substantial. It serves as a direct communication tool with consumers, conveying transparent pricing that aligns with their expectations.”

SNACKS AND CONFECTIONERY PMPs tend to shine particularly bright in the snacks, sweets and cakes categories, as these thrive on impulse purchases. “This commitment to £1 has been instrumental in Golden Wonder’s success with Transform-A-Snack £1 PMPs growing at 15.1% – and the recent launch of Pickled Bikers boosting the Fun Snacks £1 PMP range to deliver 24.9% growth,” Smith explains.

Kathryn Hague, Head of Marketing at Hancocks, adds: “PMPs work best in impulsive categories, including snacks and confectionery. This is because they’re sold in smaller formats and therefore they can have attractive prices. “Sweets, chocolate, crisps, soft drinks and snacks can all benefit from having pricing clearly marked on them for customers.”

SOFT DRINKS WIN “More than ever, price-marked packs are a key way of helping shoppers to navigate the soft drink aisle in convenience where 35% of soft drinks are bought on impulse and shoppers are accustomed to seeing price-marked packs in stores,” Red Bull explains. Meanwhile, Britvic is also looking at targeted measures to support retailers, including with PMPs. Ben Parker, Britvic’s GB Commercial Director for Retail, says: “Across our range the profit on return percentage will be maintained so that as the price-marked packs increase in price, the cash margin grows.”

Grouping price-marked packs of snacks together enables consumers to see the full range and choose the snack for their mission – whether it be a ‘grab and go’ or a sharing pack for a Big Night In. Grouping by pricepoint rather than brand of product really makes it easy for consumers to make quick and easy decisions about what to buy. MATT SMITH, MARKETING DIRECTOR FOR TAYTO GROUP




*Source: Plum Ideas Marketing Agency | 70 Convenience Retailers | Apr 22.

96% of convenience retailers agree “PMP snacks are more, or as important, as ever”*





Would you call the cops if a punter entered your store and stripped down to their birthday suit? That may well depend on their physical appearance, I hear you say. If they looked like Under The Counter, then it’s a definite yes. Some things are meant to never see the light of day, and UTC’s withered frame is most certainly one of them. Putting any aesthetic arguments aside, however, dialling 999 is pretty much a no brainer if the individual in question first crashes their car into a pole outside the shop (Andrzej made a full recovery, by the way) and then dives naked into the instore aquarium. Now, don’t panic if you’ve just spent a fortune installing a beer cave; giant fish tanks are not the latest trend in convenience

As detailed in the Off-Trade News pages of this august journal, a complaint was made to the alcohol industry’s Independent Complaint Panel against Asahi’s Super Dry beer recently. The complainant argued that the “nature of the drink was not communicated on its packaging with absolute clarity under Code rule 3.1”. Under The Counter could see their point. For, purely in the pursuit of investigative journalism, the Auld Boy cracked open a bottle of said suds and do you know what? It turns out that Asahi Super Dry – just like most liquids – is actually very wet.

retailing. The store in question is in America, of course, and is a specialist hunting, shooting and fishing outlet. And what, UTC wondered, is exactly the point of the aquarium? A literally massive footfall driver to be sure, although the Auld Boy mused that it might serve a slightly darker ‘try before you buy’ purpose for shoppers considering a new fishing rod. At any rate, the poor naked chap, who was clearly having a bad day, spent five minutes doing cannonballs and standing under a waterfall at the Bass Pro Shop in Leeds, Alabama before climbing over the side of the aquarium to fall 20 feet onto a concrete floor. The resulting concussion ensured the attending polis had their easiest catch of the day.

BEEHIVE YOURSELF A PR company that shall remain nameless was crazy enough to send Under The Counter a jar of vegan honey the other day. Cue one of UTC’s ‘What’s the world coming to?’ rants. Technically it wasn’t honey, but ‘honea’ – a slightly-off-but-similar spelling that would do Aldi proud. This is presumably because bees are lawyered right up to all six of their tiny insect oxters and are ready to swarm all over any makers of “bee-less vegan honey alternatives” that try to pass their product off as the genuine sweet stuff. Let’s face it, a bee with a bee in its bonnet doesn’t bear thinking about. It was a toss-up whether the Auld Boy was upset more about honea’s actual existence in the real world or the bad spelling. His blood pressure had just about stabilised when the news broke that Absolut had just launched a new ‘Hunni’ flavoured vodka.



NEVER A DULL MOMENT It was Mrs UTC who suggested Under The Counter should join the Dull Men’s Club. Now, after approximately 297 years of marriage, it’s to be expected that one’s life partner loses some of their initial sparkle but still, the Auld Boy nearly spat a Werther’s Original into his stamp album when his good lady dropped that bombshell. However, Mrs UTC was merely pointing him towards some insight into Sweden’s forecourt sector via a Facebook group she’d joined. The insight comes from Dull Man James Auger, who works in “one of the few old-school gas stations in northern Sweden”. Actually, you can stick “few” in front of anything regarding northern Sweden; it’s emptier than former Post Office boss Paula Vennells’ display cabinet. The 500sq ft forecourt shop is best described as an Aladdin’s cave, albeit one that has never seen a planogram in its puff. Noting that it seemed to stock “the weirdest stuff” – including an electric lime scale remover – James challenged the internet to come up with a product that wasn’t on its shelves. Or just dumped on the floor. The internet tried and the internet broadly failed. Pictorial evidence was provided of ant killer, Nokia chargers, toboggans, blank CD-Rs, blank cassettes, dart boards, bat and ball sets, a bath plug, flags, and a toilet plunger, to name but a few. Two questions immediately sprung into the Auld Boy’s mind. Firstly, when did the place last do a stocktake? And, more pressingly, what else is Mrs UTC up to on the internet when he’s blissfully playing with his train set?

Day-Today Bankton Symbol Store of the Year (Single Store)


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