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Editor’s Take: Serious business

Baby food boom

Packaging on the perimeter

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PRIZED PICKS Top private-branded food products offer quality, innovation, value and more

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WELCOME TO OUR FAMILY OF PRODUCTS all From The Hearth!

Expanding our assortment and our capabilities

www.fromthehearth.com

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Volume 42 No. 5 May 2019

DEPARTMENTS 4

Editor’s Take

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COVER STORY

Prized Picks

The results of our Store Brands 2019 Editors’ Picks Awards in 30 food categories

35 CATEGORY INTELLIGENCE 35

Candy and Chocolate

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Baby Care

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Bakery, Dough and Rolls

FEATURES 9

Getting Social Q&A with Carol Angrisani

The author of a consumer e-newsletter and video series on StoreBrandsUSA.com talks private brands

32 Packaging Taking a ‘fresh’ approach Packaging on the perimeter must appease myriad consumer demands, from convenience to sustainability

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Store Brands (ISSN-0190-9851; USPS # 0488-370) is published monthly by EnsembleIQ, 8550 W. Bryn Mawr, Suite 200, Chicago, IL 60631. Subscriptions: One year, $95; two years, $146. One year, Canada $112; two years, Canada $150, One year, foreign $175; two years, foreign $285. Payable in advance with a bank draft drawn on a US bank in US funds.Single copies $10, except foreign, where postage will be added. Reprints, permissions and licensing, please contact Wright’s Media at ensembleiq@wrightsmedia.com or(877) 652-5295. Canada Post: Canada returns to be sent to IDS, P.O. Box 456, Niagara Falls, ON, L2E6V2. Periodicals postage rates paid at Deerfield, IL and additional mailing offices. Printed in USA. POSTMASTER: send all address changes to Store Brands PO Box 1842 Lowell MA 01853. Copyright 2018 by EnsembleIQ. All rights reserved, including the rights to reproduce in whole or in part. All letters to the editors of this magazine will be treated as having been submitted for publication. The magazine reserves the right to edit and abridge them. The publication is available in microform from University Microfilms International, 300 North Zeeb Road, Ann Arbor, MI, 48106. The contents of this publication can not be reproduced in whole or in part without the consent of the publisher. The publisher is not responsible for claims and representations. www.storebrands.com / May 2019 / Store Brands

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EDITOR’S TAKE

Business Intelligence for an Evolving Market

8550 W. Bryn Mawr, Suite 200, Chicago, IL 60631 (773) 992-4450

Vice President/Brand Director

DELIBERATE ABOUT STORE BRANDS

Eric Savitch

856-489-3336

esavitch@ensembleiq.com

EDITORIAL Editor-in-Chief

Lawrence Aylward

(330) 635-2586

laylward@ensembleIQ.com

Managing Editor

Gina Acosta

(813) 417-4149

gacosta@ensembleIQ.com

Digital Editor

Louisa Hallett

(904) 294-6764

lhallett@ensembleiq.com

Contributing Writers

Rich Mitchell, Dana Cvetan, Nevenka Jevtic

ADVERTISING & SALES Associate Brand Director (708) 565-5350

Clearly, it’s an era of retailers aiming to grow their private brands programs. That message came shining through once again at the Efficient Collaborative Retail Marketing’s (ECRM) second-annual Store Brands Leadership Summit held April 8, where representatives of three major retailers outlined structured plans to grow their store brands programs. Yes, they mean business — serious business. The retailers spoke to a group of suppliers who attended the Store Brands Leadership Summit as part of ECRM’s store brands-themed Efficient Program Planning Sessions held April 7-11 at Bally’s Las Vegas Hotel & Casino. Brooke Hodierne, the vice president of own brands for Pittsburgh-based Giant Eagle, said she wants to grow Giant Eagle’s private label market share to a European-esque 40%. “It’s super inspirational,” she admitted. During her presentation, Hodierne unveiled a new approach the retailer is taking with its private brands program. “We used to be the me-too [product] and the fast-follower. But we’ve taken that model and thrown it out the window.” Hodierne said Giant Eagle is now reviewing categories “through the lens of our own brands.” If the category is ice cream, it’s no longer about analyzing it to find out where Giant Eagle’s store brand products fit in. It’s about taking the category and deciding where the national brands fit in around Giant Eagle’s private-branded products. Derek Gaskins, senior vice president of merchandising and procurement for Des Moines, Iowa-based Yesway, a new fast-growing convenience store chain that will soon have 500 stores in nine states, also has lofty goals for private brands. He wants Yesway to be the ALDI or Lidl of the convenience store channel when it comes to store brands. ALDI and Lidl, as you know, offer more than a 90% assortment of private label. “We want to be one of the innovative retailers,” Gaskins said during his presentation at the summit. “Why can’t we be the Lidl or ALDI of the convenience channel? It’s an aspiration that we are treating very seriously.” Changes are also coming to ShopRite’s private brands program. Speaking at the summit, Chris Skyers, vice president of own brands for Wakefern Food Corp., the Keasbey, N.J.-based parent company of ShopRite, said he wants to take ShopRite’s store brands to 30% market share in the next five years. That market share is currently about 13%. “We are a house of brands, and converting from a house of brands to own brands is not an easy task,” Skyers noted. But Skyers, who assumed his role about a year ago, made it clear that he and his private brands team, which contains several new faces, are up to the task and have assembled a five-year plan to achieve their goal. Skyers said consumers will begin noticing ShopRite’s store brand transformation in October. “There will be a new look and feel,” he said. Clearly, Giant Eagle, Yesway and ShopRite have realized that success can be gained by offering quality and value through private-branded programs. They also realize that private brands allow them to differentiate to better compete. I admire their determination. They are all very deliberate in their respective approaches. Good luck to them in taking their private brands programs to the next level … and the next level after that.

Maggie Kaeppel

mkaeppel@ensembleIQ.com

Senior Sales Manager

Judy Hayes

(925) 785-9665

jhayes@ensembleiq.com

CUSTOM MEDIA Director of Client Services, Enterprise Solutions Kaeli Elisco (224) 632-8221

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AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT Director of Audience Engagement

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Audience Engagement Manager (215) 301-0593

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REPRINTS, PERMISSIONS AND LICENSING Please contact Wright’s Media at ensembleiq@wrightsmedia.com or (877) 652-5295.

EVENTS • MARKETING • DIGITAL • RESEARCH • CIRCULATION CORPORATE OFFICERS Executive Chairman - Alan Glass Chief Executive Officer - David Shanker Chief Financial Officer - Dan McCarthy Chief Operating Officer. - Joel Hughes Chief Innovation Officer - Tanner Van Dusen Ann Jadown – Chief Human Resources Officer Executive Vice President, Events & Conferences – Ed Several

Lawrence Aylward, Editor-in-Chief laylward@ensembleIQ.com

2015

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CTS Ad 2019 VF4 Store Brands2.qxp_Layout 1 4/10/19 2:37 PM Page 1

PLMA’s 2019 Private Label Trade Show

Store BrandsMake Things Happen Wizards beware. PLMA’s 2019 Private Label Trade Show is coming. All the top supermarkets, drug chains, mass merchandisers, and specialty and online retailers. All the food, snack and beverage suppliers. Plus, health and wellness, household and kitchen, and more organic and natural exhibitors than ever before. Find out more about how your company can take advantage of PLMA’s great annual event. Telephone (212) 972-3131 or email exhibit@plma.com.

Nov.17-19 • Chicago Presented by the Private Label Manufacturers Association Visit www.plma.com

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AroundtheIndustry

Dollar General ‘believes’ in private label beauty Retailer launches premium cosmetics line with items priced at $5 or less By Gina Acosta

private label segment grew by nearly 4% between 2013 and 2018. Some of the products in the new Dollar General beauty line include: Skin Finish Foundation — $5 Available in 12 shades, the Skin Finish Foundation provides medium to buildable coverage with a semi-matte finish. Available in the following shades: Linen, Porcelain, Delicate Ivory, Nude, Soft Beige, Warm Vanilla, Neutral Tan, Tawny, Sand, Hazelnut, Chestnut and Mocha. The Dollar General private label beauty launch is the fourth private label beauty announcement by a retailer in a little over a month.

Dollar General is daring makeup lovers who love a great product at a great value to not fall in love with its newest private brand: Believe Beauty. The new own brand beauty line from the Goodlettsville, Tenn.based discount retailer offers a range of approximately 150 quality and affordable makeup and beauty products, all of which are available exclusively at Dollar General. Plus, every item in the Believe line is priced at $5 or less. “When developing the Believe brand, we were very thoughtful to ensure the line encompassed quality and affordability while providing customers with an exceptional, trend-forward and comprehensive cosmetic line,” said Jason Reiser, Dollar General’s executive vice president and chief merchandising officer, in a statement. “From the sleek, 6

custom packaging to the high-quality products that the Believe line offers, we look forward to customers having a beauty line they can not only trust, but believe in.” The Dollar General private label beauty launch is the fourth private label beauty announcement by a retailer in a little over a month. Hudson Bay Company launched Fifth City in late March, and the same month Amazon came out with its new affordable skin care line, Belei. It includes 12 products that range in price from $9 to $40. Meanwhile QVC announced in April it would be debuting Carmindy Beauty in the fall. It’s no surprise that retailers are seizing the opportunity in private label beauty. According to market research firm Euromonitor International, the

Velvet Matte Liquid Lip — $4 The Velvet Matte Liquid Lip provides a saturated color with a soft matte finish and lightweight feel. Available in six shades: Honey Blush, Foxy, Haute Pink, Cherry on Top, Grenadine and Mischief. Dual Ended Contour Stick — $4.50 Available in the following shades: Light, Medium and Deep. Universal Brow Kit — $4.50 Kit comes with buildable color in a universal shade that is perfect for any tone. Plus, the kit also includes a dualended applicator to fill in sparse or light brows. Eyeshadow Palette — $5 Palettes include matte, metallic and satin finish shades that range from muted to bold. Available in the following shades: Nearly Nude, Plush Purple, Golden Disco and Into the Blue. Dollar General operates 15,472 stores in 44 states. SB

Store Brands / May 2019 / www.storebrands.com

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AroundtheIndustry Wegmans ‘delivers’ on convenience with new strategy By Louisa Hallett

With competition ever-increasing in the grocery industry, retailers are desperately trying to find new avenues of growth. They may not have to look too far because one grocery chain, Wegmans Food Markets, has rolled out another great example of how grocery stores can drive growth with store brands: delivery of prepared foods. Rochester, N.Y.-based Wegmans recently announced a deal with DoorDash to offer delivery of the grocer’s prepared foods (cold and hot), including pizza, wings, subs, soups, salads and several other items. Wegmans said its Wegmans Meals 2GO service is now available at five stores (four in Rochester and one in Virginia) and will roll out to more than 40 stores by the end of this year, with more to follow in 2020. The retailer had

been testing the concept over the past year at a store in Pittsford, N.Y. I’ve always wondered why grocery stores have been slow to embrace an expansion of their prepared food programs through delivery. The NPD Group, a research outfit, reports that visits to “grocerants” (grocery store restaurants and hot food counters) have increased close to 30% since 2008. More than 40%

of Americans buy prepared foods from grocery stores, and a hot meal from the grocery store costs $4.22 on average, according to NPD, compared to $7.96 at a fast-casual restaurant, a 53% difference. With how busy everyone is these days, sales of prepared foods at grocerants are only going to rise. What Wegmans is doing is taking the grocerant strategy one step further by offering delivery. Innovative prepared food programs, like Wegmans’ program, also offer a huge opportunity for grocers to elevate their private brand programs, since prepared foods are a store brand. If a customer orders pizza delivery from Wegmans, for example, that customer may be inclined to buy the Wegmans store brand pizza sauce. Grocers should expand their hot food sections and offer most of it for delivery. The next time a consumer thinks about ordering a pizza for delivery, the question shouldn’t be limited to “Papa John’s or Domino’s.” The grocery store should be part of that equation, too. SB

Put your mind in the Tropics! Subscribe to the iTi Innovation blog for recipes, infographics, and more.

ititropicals.com/blog 8

Store Brands / May 2019 / www.storebrands.com

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Getting Social

Q A with Carol Angrisani Author of a consumer e-newsletter and video series on StoreBrandsUSA.com

How did you come into the world of private brands? In 1995, I joined the staff of Supermarket News as an associate editor. It’s been great to be part of the industry all these years, especially now that I’m writing a consumer e-newsletter and hosting a video series about store brands at StoreBrandsUSA.com. Describe the private brands industry in one word. Valuable.

Carol Angrisani keeps consumers up to date on private brands at StoreBrandsUSA.com.

What do you like most about the industry? The appeal of private label goes far beyond price. There has been so much flavor, ingredient and packaging innovation that many shoppers choose which stores to shop at specifically for their store brands. Whether it’s food, beverage, health and beauty care, household goods or another category, private label delivers on both quality and value. What one great thing does the industry have going for it? At this moment: millennials. Along with their increasing purchasing power, millennials are open-minded and love to try new products and flavors. Millennials fully embrace private label and appreciate it for all it has to offer. What is the industry’s biggest challenge? The heavy promotional spend by national brands. But it’s great to see how retailers are using tools like social media as a way to engage shoppers and overcome that challenge. I am

seeing more use of Facebook coupons, YouTube recipe videos, Instagram contests and other tactics to promote store brands. This is what makes my job so rewarding. Through the content I create for StoreBrandsUSA, I’m able to educate shoppers about store brand products available both in-store and online. What trait in yourself do you attribute most to your success? My willingness to adapt to new situations. There have been many changes not only in the food retail industry, but also the publishing industry. I welcome new ways of getting the job done. What’s the best advice someone ever gave you? “Learn something new every day.” You have a week off. Where do you go and why? Fire Island, N.Y. This barrier island is truly a hidden gem. Along with beautiful beaches on the Atlantic Ocean, there is a small-town ambiance, wild deer and no cars. If you were born 100 years ago, what would you do for a living? I’d be a nurse. I initially wanted to be a nurse before deciding on journalism. I was a hospital candy striper in high school, so I got a first-hand look at the many responsibilities of a nurse. Nurses are truly the backbone of the health care industry. What’s the best book you’ve ever read? “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail” by Cheryl Strayed. SB www.storebrands.com / May 2019 / Store Brands

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ales of private-branded food products are on the rise. And it’s easy to understand why. The results of our Store Brands 2019 Editors’ Picks Awards in 30 food categories provide substantial evidence of the quality, innovation and value occurring in the store brands industry. Our program, open to private label manufacturers and retailers that self-manufacture their own brands, recognizes the best new food product concepts available for private branding. We’ll continue our Store Brands 2019 Editors’ Picks Awards in August with the best new beverages in private brands, and in October with the best new nonfood products. Considering the food products we sampled and judged, it’s no wonder that some manufacturers and retailers are experiencing unprecedented success with their private brands. We received nearly 250 entries of food products in this year’s competition. Most of the products entered are on target in what store brands are becoming. We are thoroughly impressed with what manufacturers and retailers are doing to differentiate on many levels. Premiumness is definitely at a lofty level in store brands. To be eligible for entry in this year’s competition, the products must have been introduced in 2018. A team of editors judged the entries on taste and mouthfeel, innovation, on-trend impact and appealing presentation. Gold, silver and bronze honors are issued in most categories, but some categories received only gold or gold and silver awards. We congratulate the following winners in the categories listed on the following pages: www.storebrands.com / May 2019 / Store Brands

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GOLD: FGF Brands Inc. — Signature Select Original Mini Naan Bread (Albertsons Companies brand) and Specially Selected Mini Naan Bread (ALDI brand) Downright delicious. Light and airy with a buttery and slight salt flavor. According to FGF Brands, the bread is baked in a patented high-heat stone oven to replicate traditional methods. SILVER: Ardent Mills LLC — L’oven Fresh Marbled Cinnamon Breakfast Bread and L’oven Fresh Apple Strudel Breakfast Bread (ALDI brands) Excellent flavor. The cinnamon and apple strudel flavors, combined with great mouthfeel, make for a memorable eating experience. The breads also contain no artificial preservatives or flavors and no high-fructose corn syrup. BRONZE: (tie) Wholesome Harvest — Specially Selected Maple French Toast Bagels (ALDI brand) A fabulous breakfast treat that’s not just for breakfast. Maple French toast flavor is unmistakable but not overpowering. La Fournee Doree — Specially Selected Brioche Hot Dog Buns and Specially Selected Brioche Rolls (ALDI brands) Light and puffy but rich and flavorful. The French would be proud and impressed.

CANDY AND CHOCOLATE

CANDY AND CHOCOLATE

GOLD: Storck USA — Moser Roth Dark Collection: Caramel Sea Salt (ALDI brand) The phrase “to die for” comes to mind when experiencing this high-end product. The sea salt and caramel provide a heavenly distinction. A slight crunch adds to a savory experience. SILVER: Lily O’Brien’s Chocolates —Specially Selected Caramel Crave (ALDI brand) Something here for every flavor palate. The 15 individual caramel-filled chocolates come in five on-trend flavors, including maple caramel, apple pie, espresso, caramel ganache and salted caramel.

CEREAL AND GRANOLA

BRONZE: Natra Chocolate America — Choceur Gift Card Holder Chocolates (ALDI brand) The Belgian chocolate not only tastes great, but this is also a great idea as the product is packaged to be presented with a gift card. The chocolate just might be better than any gift card.

CEREAL AND GRANOLA GOLD: Southern Bakeries — Millville Oats & Honey Bar Granola and Millville Cinnamon Bar Granola (ALDI brands) The former is super crunchy with a buttery oats and honey flavor. The latter features a bright cinnamon flavor. Both make for an excellent breakfast option or snack. 12

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SILVER: Post Consumer Brands — Millville Original Balance Multigrain Cereal (ALDI brand) Now this is a healthy cereal that blows away expectations. Great crunch and flavor.

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BRONZE: Attune Foods — Strawberry- and Vanilla-Flavored Granola (Smart & Final brand) Nice combination of flavors. Product contains hemp and flax, both trendy ingredients.

CHEESE GOLD: Somerdale International —Specially Selected Normandy Honey & Pecan Baking Brie and Specially Selected Normandy Cranberry Baking Brie (ALDI brands) Portion size is perfect as some brie wheels are too big. Nuts taste fresh and are nicely seasoned in honey and pecan version. Cheese has a high-quality taste in both versions. Both are also very creamy.

CHEESE SILVER: CA Form USA Corp. — Specially Selected Red Wine Cheese and Specially Selected Sparkling Wine Cheese (ALDI brands) Wine provides a subtle but not overpowering taste. High-quality presentation. Made from Italian-imported cheese and gluten-free. BRONZE: Coombe Castle International — Happy Farms Preferred Valentines Day Cheese Assortment: Wensleydale with Raspberries & White Chocolate Waxed Heart (ALDI brand) Excellent and creative example of a seasonal store brand. And as far as taste, this combination works pretty darn well.

CONDIMENTS CONDIMENTS

COOKIES, CAKES AND OTHER SWEET SNACKS

GOLD: Aurora Products — Wellsley Farms Organic Salad Topping (BJ’s Wholesale Club brand) Made with sweetened cranberries, sesame sticks, walnuts, pepitas and sunflower seeds. Great combination and very innovative. Perfect for a salad or a snack or even on top of a chicken breast, not to mention other foods. SILVER: George DeLallo Co. — Park Street Deli Olive Variety Pack: Provolini Antipasta; Park Street Deli Olive Variety Pack: Pitted Olives Jubilee; Park Street Deli Olive Variety Pack: Jumbo Pitted Kalamata Olives; and Park Street Deli Olive Variety Pack: Greek Feta Salad (ALDI brands) The products in this line feature olives that don’t have a metallic taste (like many packaged olives). The olives taste fresh and are not overly salty. Perfect for parties.

COOKIES, CAKES AND OTHER SWEET SNACKS GOLD: The Kroger Co. — Simple Truth Chocolate Cake with Coffee Frosting (Kroger brand) Coffee cake never tasted so good, but this product provides a new twist on the standard version. The chocolate is moist and tasty. The coffee frosting, which is only on the top of the cake, is rich and flavorful. Sold under 14

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Kroger’s popular Simple Truth line, the product is made with cage-free eggs, which is pointed out on the packaging. This is indulgence done right.

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SILVER: The Father’s Table — Signature Select Cheesecakes (Albertsons Companies brand) The 40-ounce version features 12 varieties of cheesecake, including New York, turtle, blueberry, chocolate, brownie, raspberry, chocolate chip, chocolate cherry, strawberry, chocolate marble, vanilla bean and raspberry white chocolate. The cakes look luscious and taste the same. In fact, they look so good that you don’t want to eat them. But you do! BRONZE: (tie) Delighted By Hummus LLC — Park Street Deli Vanilla Bean Dessert Hummus and Park Street Deli Brownie Batter Dessert Hummus (ALDI brands) We are impressed with this sweet take on hummus, which works wonderfully. Rich, creamy and delectable. Give and Go — Sweet P’s Bake Shop’s Eggnog/Gingerbread Mini Muffin Combo, Apple Cinnamon and Cinnamon Bun Mini Muffins, Apple Caramel Cupcakes, Unicorn Mini Cupcakes, Birthday Cake Cupcakes (Topco Associates brands) We love some of the unique flavor profiles here under the Sweet P’s Bake Shop line. The products are yummy and perfect for many occasions.

CRACKERS

CRACKERS GOLD: M&M Food Market (TWI Foods) — M&M Baguette Crisps These bite-sized toasted baguette crisps are infused with parmesan and garlic. Full flavor and super crispy for a terrific crunch. Love the golden brown edges. SILVER: Rovira Foods Inc. — Honey & Oats Soda Crackers According to the company, these are the first soda crackers available in the U.S. made with honey and oats. Nice taste and texture.

DIPS DIPS

GOLD: Duke Sandwich Productions — Park Street Deli Buffalo Chicken Party Dip (ALDI brand) To think it all started with the Buffalo chicken wing many years ago. This innovation is creamy with a nice texture and a sharp (but not too sharp) taste that pays homage to its origin. SILVER: Cedar’s Mediterranean Foods — Park Street Deli Classic Hummus Mini Cups and Park Street Deli Red Pepper Hummus Mini Cups (ALDI brands) Creamy with excellent texture and taste. Also very convenient. BRONZE: Simply Fresh Foods — Little Salad Bar Layer Dip (ALDI brand) A healthy combination of pinto beans, guacamole, salsa and cheese (cheddar and Cotija). A dipper’s delight.

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Congratulations to for excellence in new product innovation!

Editor's Picks Awards program recognizes the best new product concepts available for private branding based on taste, innovation and visual presentation.

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GOLD: Nature’s Touch Frozen Foods — Naturalia Frozen Fruit (Metro brand) We sampled the frozen strawberries and frozen mangoes (there are also frozen raspberries, frozen blueberries and a frozen berry mix) and were impressed. When thawed, the fruit holds its texture, firmness and tastes great. The company touts that products are tested twice for pesticide residue (at the farm and its facility).

FROZEN SNACKS AND APPETIZERS GOLD: Kahiki — Firecracker Chicken Egg Rolls An explosion of flavor with excellent mouthfeel. This combination of spicy white chicken meat with red and green cabbage, yellow carrots and diced jalapenos in a crispy red wrapper was the clear-cut winner.

FROZEN SNACKS AND APPETIZERS

SILVER: The Kroger Co. — Private Selection Calabrese Salami & Marinated Peppers Pizza (Kroger brand) The verbiage on the package claims that the product’s ingredients — calabrese salami, arugula pesto, marinated red peppers and Grana Padano cheese — will cause mouths to water. A taste of this, and it’s more like Niagara Falls. BRONZE: Kahiki — Black Pepper Chicken Potstickers This product takes a few minutes of stove-top prep time, but the effort is worth the few minutes it takes. Luscious, to say the least.

FROZEN VEGETABLES

FROZEN VEGETABLES

GOLD: Seneca Foods — Frozen Veggie Sides Super convenient with on-trend and tasty flavors, including creamy veggies and rice; pasta primavera; super green and barley; cauliflower with veggies and quinoa; Asian-style veggies and rice; corn and black beans; and firecracker corn. SILVER: Ittella Foods International — Season’s Choice Garlic Riced Cauliflower and Season’s Choice Plain Riced Cauliflower (ALDI brands) Riced cauliflower is low-carb, gluten-free and on-trend.

ICE CREAM AND FROZEN DESSERTS ICE CREAM AND FROZEN DESSERTS

GOLD: G.S. Gelato & Desserts — Extra Choco Cherry Oat Milk Frozen Dessert, Strawberry Oat Milk Frozen Dessert, Cold Brewin’ Coffee Oat Milk Frozen Dessert and Oatmeal Cookie Oat Milk Frozen Dessert Innovative on many fronts, starting with oat milk, which is made by blending water and oats and then straining the liquid. Not only dairy-free, but oat milk also packs many nutrients. And then there are the many tastes displayed by this product line, which is outstanding. SILVER: Albertsons Companies — Signature Reserve Brazilian Guava Cheesecake Ice Cream (Albertsons Companies brand) Oh … my … goodness! Can ice cream taste any better? A perfect blend of ingredients that combines on-trend flavors.

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is our re cip e e D ess is your stor c c y Su tion a c i d

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BRONZE: Casa del Gelato —Specially Selected Lemon Italian Ice Cream Cups, Specially Selected Chocolate Italian Ice Cream Cups and Specially Selected Black Forest Italian Ice Cream Cups (ALDI brands) An impressive line of high-end products all falling under the heading of “delectable sweet treats.”

JAMS, JELLIES AND PRESERVES ICE CREAM AND FROZEN DESSERTS

GOLD: Crofters Food Ltd. — Signature Select Preserves, including Apricot Preserves, Cherry Preserves, Four Fruit Preserves, Wild Blueberry Preserves, Blackberry Preserves, Raspberry Preserves, Strawberry Preserves (Albertsons Companies brands) It was tough deciding which preserve in the line is the best because they are all splendid — offering a texture, taste and appearance that are exceptional. We are particularly fond of the wild blueberry, blackberry and four-fruit offerings.

JAMS, JELLIES AND PRESERVES

MEAL SOLUTIONS AND MEAL KITS GOLD: DePalo Foods — Mama Cozzi’s Pizza Kitchen Pepperoni Calzone and Mama Cozzi’s Pizza Kitchen Four Cheese Calzone (ALDI brands) These calzones offer a fine meal solution for several reasons. First, they’re delicious. Second, they’re convenient — they can be prepared in a microwave in two minutes. Third, they’re something a bit different. Would love to see Mama Cozzi add some new varieties.

ICE CREAM AND FROZEN DESSERTS SILVER: (tie) Aryzta LLC — Mama Cozzi’s Pizza Kitchen Southwest Style Flatbread (ALDI brand) Flavors abound in this concoction of Monterey jack and cheddar cheeses, diced chicken breast, tomatoes, onions and jalapenos with a barbeque sauce and chipotle ranch drizzle. Kahiki — Orange Yuzu Chicken A delicious stir fry that combines lightly breaded white chicken meat with carrots, sugar snap peas, water chestnuts, and red peppers in an orange yuzu sauce. BRONZE: (tie) Gehl Foods — Equate High Performance Protein Shake (Walmart brand) This ready-to-drink product, which comes in chocolate and vanilla flavors, may just be the best protein shake we’ve ever tasted. Each 11-ounce serving contains 30 grams of protein and a slew of other vitamins and minerals. The Kroger Co. — Private Selection Cup & At ‘A.M. Egg Frittata (Kroger brand) Billed as breakfast in a cup, this product solves the portable hot egg breakfast problem in minutes. And the product solves it well with a tasty mixture of eggs, carrots, broccoli, red bell peppers and mushrooms.

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Founded in 1990, Celtrade Canada Inc. is a processor of sauces, condiments and dressings serving a balanced mix of North America’s top supermarkets, big-box retailers, specialty food retailers, and food service distributors and processors. The Mississauga, Ontario-based company boasts an extensive product portfolio of more than 500 SKUs comprising 15 distinct product families, including specialty dressings, flavored mayonnaises, infused oils and vinegars, transformational flavor pastes, barbecue sauces, ethnic-inspired solutions, gourmet cooking sauces, and a wide range of vegan-oriented solutions. “Our team of chefs, culinary experts, procurement specialists and manufacturing professionals create an array of products that are globally sourced and authentically created,” said David Lewis, Celtrade Canada’s executive vice president of sales and marketing for North America. “Using only the highest-quality ingredients,

Celtrade Canada is known for creativity, innovation and exceptional taste.” It’s at a sophisticated manufacturing facility — where freshly peeled and cut lemongrass, small-batch roasted spices, sweet caramelized onions and slow-roasted garlic are concocted — that Celtrade Canada assembles the key ingredients to make retailers’ products special and differentiated. “Celtrade Canada takes pride in sourcing these ingredients from their place of origin around the world,” Lewis says. Innovation is the bloodline to Celtrade Canada’s success. The company works intrinsically with its clients to develop and co-develop equitable solutions that are consumer-driven. The company’s corporate culture places high value on both syndicated and insight-led data that has enabled Celtrade to evolve its portfolio

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toward higher-margin, value-added products with higher probability of consumer acceptance. Celtrade Canada’s Signature Select BBQ Sauces were recently awarded a Gold Award in Store Brands’ 2019 Editors’ Picks Awards. “We are delighted to have developed these innovative flavor solutions with our partners at Albertsons Companies,” Lewis said. “The flavors are a testimony to understanding how our consumers are seeking exciting premium solutions within a mature category. From the Sweet and Tangy Bourbon or the Chipotle Craft Beer, to the Hawaiian Style Hot Rum, or my personal favorite the Habanero Lime Tequila, there are a range of flavors and heat indexes to satisfy all palates.” n

Celtrade Canada’s line of Signature Select BBQ Sauces was awarded a Gold Award in Store Brands’ 2019 Editors’ Picks Awards.

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GOLD: The Kroger Co. — Private Selection Carne Asada Jerky (Kroger brand) Unbelievable aroma and flavor. When you open the package, it smells just like fresh-cooked carne asada. Jerky has a nice color with visible fresh spices. Not too salty. Delicious.

MEAT, SEAFOOD AND POULTRY (FROZEN) GOLD: AZ Gems — Fremont Fish Market Medium Raw Peeled Shrimp (ALDI brand) OK, so frozen shrimp isn’t really innovative, but so what? This product cooks up well in minutes and tastes exquisite. Its packaging shouts that it’s all natural and contains no preservatives. It is also sustainably sourced, a big differentiator for private brands these days.

MEAT, SEAFOOD AND POULTRY (FROZEN) SILVER: The Kroger Co., Maple Breakfast Meatballs (Kroger brand) Meatballs for breakfast? Why not? This is a bit of an innovative risk but it works. The fully-cooked meatballs are tender and tasty, and not overpowered with maple taste. Meatballs and eggs anyone? BRONZE: Tri-Union Frozen Products —Fremont Fish Market Cooked Shrimp in Medium, Large and Jumbo Sizes (ALDI brand) No matter the size, these are high-quality and sustainably sourced products.

MEAT, SEAFOOD AND POULTRY (PROCESSED)

MEAT, SEAFOOD AND POULTRY (PROCESSED) GOLD: The Kroger Co. — HemisFares Beech Wood Cold Smoked Salmon (Kroger brand) Perfectly smoked with mild beech wood. Rich in color and taste; the salmon just seems to melt in your mouth. The product also tells a fine story about its origin and sustainable characteristics. HemisFares is Kroger’s ultra-premium line and this product represents the line well. SILVER: Daniele Inc. — Appleton Farms Prosciutto (ALDI brand) This is an excellent prosciutto made by a family company that knows how to make it. BRONZE: Carl Buddig — Lunch Mate Tubs in various protein selections including uncured honey ham, uncured smoked ham, lower sodium uncured honey ham, oven-roasted turkey breast, rotisserie chicken breast and roast beef (ALDI brands) Deli meat done right by a manufacturer that has been making it for more than 75 years. Also, deli meat done right at a tremendous value — $3.99 for 16 ounces.

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VISIT NOLUMA.COM TO LEARN MORE

OPTIMAL LIGHT PROTECTION WITH NOLUMA TECHNOLOGY We compare your packaging options for light protection capacity and guide you to the best cost efficient design that prevents content change due to light exposure. Our patented technology measures, assesses and then Noluma certifies the end result as optimally light protected. Noluma.com info@noluma.com © 2019 Noluma International, LLC. Noluma™ and the Noluma Logo are trademarks of Noluma International, LLC.

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NOLUMA

LOCKING IN FARM-FRESH FLAVOR WITH LIGHT-PROTECTED PACKAGING Food and beverages don’t always reach consumers with the same nutritional content and taste as when they left the farm. One of the main factors is light – both natural and artificial, such as retail lighting, LED and Fluorescent lights. As consumers wake up to this fact, brands are at risk of losing trust. But right now, they have a huge opportunity to get ahead by optimizing their product packaging to protect nutrients against light damage, and communicating this to their customers with a Noluma logo – the only way to reassure them that the food they’re buying has been fully light-protected.

Noluma International LLC is the first company to use technology developed to assess, measure and certify light protection in packaging in relation to its contents. Noluma’s testing process replicates two weeks of light exposure in less than two hours, saving companies time and money. The Noluma team can then assess the effectiveness of the packaging, objectively collaborating with consumer-packaged goods companies to offer guidance on how to redesign packaging content to better protect from light damage. Noluma is the only company that certifies products as meeting the highest standards of light protection. A Noluma™ certification provides customers with the guarantee that a product’s nutrition and sensory qualities is fully protected from light damage by its packaging.

Light protection in action Jersey Girls Dairy, based in Vermont, is proud of the milk it produces. To preserve both nutrients and sensory quality, Jersey Girls partnered with Noluma to measure the light protection of its packaging and advise on the development of a container that would preserve the taste, freshness and nutrients in its farm-fresh milk. Through this partnership, Noluma launched a new light-protected bottle, and used local campaigns to help educate people about how light affects milk. The campaign resulted in Jersey Girls’ sales tripling in just two weeks, with the quality improvements noted by local consumers, who recognized the smell and taste difference of light-protected milk compared to those contained in unprotected packaging. As more consumers become aware of light degradation and nutrient loss, they’ll begin to seek out brands that can guarantee their products are sufficiently protected. It’s a trend that all food brands and manufacturers would be wise to get ahead with now – and Noluma can help. For more information, email info@noluma.com Learn more at Noluma.com

©2019 Noluma International, LLC. Noluma™ and the Noluma Logo are trademarks of Noluma International, LLC.

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PASTA AND PASTA MIXES

GOLD: Agrusa Inc. — Signature Reserve Pasta Penne Rigate, Signature Reserve Pasta Linguine, Signature Reserve Pasta Orecchiette, Signature Reserve Pasta Fusilli, Signature Reserve Pasta Bucatini (Albertsons Companies brands) Quite frankly, this is some of the finest pasta we have ever tasted, which is a reason we decided to award the entire line and not just one product. The dough of the pasta is bronze die-cut for a rougher texture and a porous surface, which means it “catches” the pasta sauce. The pasta is also slow-dried to enhance natural flavor, according to the manufacturer. This is pasta on another level. Oh yeah, it’s made in Italy.

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SILVER: The Kroger Co. — HemisFares Spinach & Grana Padano Filled Pasta (Kroger brand) Imported from Italy and tells a story — “Our authentic Italian recipe honors the centuries-old pasta making tradition of the Emilia-Romagna region.” Feels like you’re eating something totally different. And this is excellent ravioli. BRONZE (tie) — Nuovo Pasta Productions — Priano Butternut Squash Ravioli and Priano Pumpkin Sage Ravioli (ALDI brands) We like the innovation here. The flavors grab your attention. The pasta backs up the innovation with savory products. Seviroli Foods — Ravioli Portobello Mushroom Ravioli is packed with portobello and cremini mushrooms, and ricotta and Parmesan cheese, which makes for a solid combination.

PEANUT AND NUT BUTTER

PEANUT AND NUT BUTTER GOLD: Hampton Farms — Wellsley Farms Almond Butter (sold at BJ’s Wholesale Club) The dry roasting gives it a not-too salty flavor. Not oily or greasy like many other almond butters. Very good almond flavor.

PEANUTS AND NUTS PEANUTS AND NUTS

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GOLD: The Kroger Co. — Chipotle Citrus Cashews (Kroger brand) Blown away by this product. The crunchy exterior of these nuts is addictive. They are not too sweet, not too salty and completely delicious. SILVER: Marathon Ventures — Everything Bagel Flavored Cashews (Fresh Thyme Farmers Market brand) This might be a bit of an off-the-wall combination, but that’s what innovation is all about sometimes. And this savory combination of cashews, seeds and spices is spot on. BRONZE: Star Snacks — Wellsley Farms Roasted Mix Nuts (BJ’s Wholesale Club brand) Nice combination of peanuts, almonds, cashews, filberts and pecans — a highquality mix. Excellent taste and texture. Not too salty like so many nut products.

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PET FOOD

PET FOOD

PLANT-BASED AND DAIRY-FREE FOODS

GOLD: Sunshine Mills — Pure Being Premium Salmon and Sweet Potato Dry Dog Food and Pure Being Premium Chicken and Brown Rice Dry Dog Food (ALDI brands) Clearly, premium dog food, which is on-trend with many pet lovers. Billed as “natural dog food� that contains no corn, wheat or soy; no by-product meal; no added artificial color; and no artificial preservatives. Our panel of dogs enjoyed both versions.

PLANT-BASED AND DAIRY-FREE FOODS GOLD: Ungar’s — Earth Grown Chickenless Patties (ALDI brand) These soy-based patties offer excellent taste and texture, and are on-trend as vegetarian and vegan options that contain no artificial colors and preservatives. SILVER: (tie) Ethical Brands — Simply Nature Organic Soybean Spaghetti, Simply Nature Organic Black Soybean Spaghetti and Simply Nature Organic Edamame Spaghetti (ALDI brands) Pasta has an unfamiliar look (color doesn’t have that pasta color) but it looks great once cooked. Taste was excellent. The best part is the nutrition. High in protein and fiber and low in carbs. Keeps you full a longgggg time.

Complete your Brand’s Portfolio with the crunchiest and tastiest Hispanic cracker!

           

www.storebrands.com / May 2019 / Store Brands

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SILVER: Don Lee Farms — O Organic Quinoa & Kale Veggie Patties (Albertsons Companies brand) Impressive combination of organic ingredients — patties also contain carrots, onions and spices — that result in a savory taste. BRONZE: Earth Grown — Vegan Cream Cheese (ALDI brand) Smooth and creamy — hard to believe it’s a vegan product. Nicely done.

PLANT-BASED AND DAIRY-FREE FOODS

SALTY SNACKS GOLD: Snack Innovations — Fava Bean Chips Snack Innovations bills itself as a company offering “better-for-you snacks reinvented.” No argument here. Fava beans are said to be loaded with vitamins, minerals, fiber and protein. These chips, with their chili cheese flavor, offer a bold and distinct flavor. This is innovation on myriad levels.

SALTY SNACKS

SILVER: The Kroger Co. — Kroger Cuban Sandwich Style Chips (Kroger brand) Wow! Delicious and not too salty. We could instantly taste the Cuban flavors, notably the ham, pork, Swiss cheese and tangy notes of pickles and mustard. Amazing product and super innovative, as Cuban sandwiches are on-trend now. BRONZE: Cornfields LLC — Simply Nature Organic White Cheddar Puffs (ALDI brand) Tastes better than cheese puffs. Wonderful cheddar flavor. Soft and buttery. Yum!

SAUCES AND SALSA

SAUCES AND SALSA

GOLD: Celtrade Canada — Signature Select Line of BBQ Sauces, including Habanero Lime Tequila, Hawaiian Style Hot Rum, Southern Whiskey, Chipotle Craft Beer and Sweet and Tangy Bourbon (Albertsons Companies brands) An excellent line of sauces that all feature a “spirited” taste. Color and texture are exceptional. Taste is rich. These are go-to sauces for any barbecue, but we wouldn’t limit them to just barbecues. SILVER: The Kroger Co. — Private Selection Huli Huli & Rum BBQ Sauce (Kroger brand) Delicious aroma — you can smell the rum and pineapple when you open the bottle. Sauce is thick and rich. BRONZE: Simply Fresh Foods — Simply Nature Organic Medium Salsa and Simply Nature Organic Mild Salsa (ALDI brands) Nice chunky blends of tomatoes, onions, jalapeno peppers, cilantro, vinegar and seasoning.

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SHELF-STABLE FRUIT

SHELF-STABLE FRUIT GOLD: Pouchtec — Simply Nature Superfruit Chia Strawberry Banana Squeezies and Simply Nature Superfruit Chia Blackberry Squeezies (ALDI brands) These organic fruit blends, which come in squeezable one-serving packages, are made with real fruit and contain no preservatives. The chia seeds, regarded as one of the healthiest foods on the planet, also add to an excellent texture. SILVER: NSI Group LLC — Simply Nature Freeze Dried Fruit: Strawberries; Simply Nature Freeze Dried Fruit: Fuji Apples; and Simply Nature Freeze Dried Fruit: Asian Pears (ALDI brands) Excellent color, texture and aroma with a satisfying taste. Fruit in a pouch concept is very innovative. BRONZE: (tie) Sun Pacific — Specially Selected Cara Cara Oranges (ALDI brand) Firm to the bite. Delectable rich color. Juicy and sweet with a memorable aroma.

www.storebrands.com / May 2019 / Store Brands

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BRONZE: Pacific Coast Producers — Full Circle Market/Yellow Cling Peach Slices and Full Circle Market/Yellow Cling Pear Slices (Topco Associates brands) OK, we’ve seen this before — canned fruit. But these products are different. They are packed in 100 percent fruit juices, not some sugary-laden syrup. Packaging is also non-BPA (bisphenol A). Taste and mouthfeel are outstanding.

SHELF-STABLE VEGETABLES SHELF-STABLE FRUIT

GOLD: Seneca Foods — Chef ’s Best Veggie Trays Get your veggies — and get them fast because they are shelf-stable and microwaveable. And they taste superb! Varieties include firecracker corn, corn and black beans, carrots, and green beans.

SNACK BARS SHELF-STABLE VEGETABLES

GOLD: Schulze & Burch — Millville Protein Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Chewy Bar and Millville Protein Peanut, Almond and Dark Chocolate Chewy Bar (ALDI brands) Thick and tasty and loaded with protein (10 grams per bar) and fiber. A sweet, salty and healthy treat.

SPICES AND SEASONINGS SNACK BARS

SPICES AND SEASONINGS

GOLD: The Spice Lab — Hawaiian Hula Rub A fantastic combination of spices, including salt, brown sugar, dehydrated soy sauce, red chili flakes, sesame seeds, ginger and more. This concoction can punch up any dish with its distinct but not overpowering flavor. SILVER: The Kroger Co. — Simple Truth Organic Truffle Parmesan Seasoning (Kroger brand) Amazing product for fries, vegetables, eggs and pretty much any dish where you want a deeply delicious flavor. BRONZE: Cumorah Marketing Systems LLC — Mama’s Rub and Hot Mama’s Rub We love the fiery look. This is sweet heat done right!

TRAIL MIX

TRAIL MIX

GOLD: Woodstock Farms Manufacturing — Raspberry Fruit Trail Mix, Wasabi Ginger Trail Mix, Blueberry Hemp Trail Mix and Orange Ya Glad Trail Mix We had a difficult time picking one of these trail mixes over the other so we decided to pick all four. We are impressed with the innovation, not to mention the distinct blends and tastes. SILVER: TreeHouse Foods — Wellsley Farms Peanut Buttery Trail Mix (BJ’s Wholesale Club brand) Delicious fresh-tasting trail mix. Not too sweet, not too salty. Each flavor is accurately represented.

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BRONZE: Bakery on Main — Specially Selected Organic Original Coconut Clusters and Specially Selected Organic Original Chocolate Coconut Clusters (ALDI brands) Coconut remains a popular flavor and these crunchy blends are also on trend by being organic.

YOGURT GOLD: Schreiber Foods — Specially Selected Indulgent Honey Greek Yogurt (ALDI brand) While the popularity of Greek yogurt is waning, consumers still love that it’s packed with protein. Hence, we like this yogurt for its health attributes but not at the expense of a sweet honey taste.

YOGURT

SILVER: Albertsons Companies — Open Nature Vanilla Icelandic Yogurt (Albertsons Companies brand) Icelandic yogurt is thicker than Greek yogurt. It’s also growing in popularity because of its healthy benefits. This product doesn’t disappoint. SB

It Pays to Ship Smart Industry-Leading Sanitization and Product Safety

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Don’t miss Store Brands’ 2019 Editors’ Picks for

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Best Beverages in the August issue, and Store Brands’ 2019 Editors’ Picks for Best Non-Foods in the October issue.

The Sustainable Shipping Choice 100% Recyclable Pallets

www.storebrands.com / May 2019 / Store Brands

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PACKAGING

Taking a ‘fresh’ approach Packaging on the perimeter must appease myriad consumer demands, from convenience to sustainability By Lawrence Aylward

It has been said that the fresh department is the gateway to gaining consumer trust. And with more retailers growing their store-branded fresh offerings — because of increased demand and the shrinking of the center store — packaging continues to play a vital role in gaining that trust. “Fresh categories are critical for retailers in establishing perceptions with shoppers,” says Tory Gundelach, vice president of retail insights for market researcher Kantar’s Consulting Division. “This is one of the main reasons most retailers, particularly grocers, have fresh departments front and center when you walk in the door.” The role of packaging differs greatly by fresh category, Gundelach points out. “In certain categories like produce, packaging can actually signal to the shopper that the product is not as fresh as open stock produce,” she adds. “In areas like meat, packaging is critical for shoppers to feel like they are buying a safe product. Overall, it’s critical that packaging in perishable categories keeps product fresh and protected during transport and while it is on the shelf.” Rebecca Casey, vice president of marketing and consumer market development for Chicago-based TC Transcontinental Packaging, says retailers want convenience in fresh packaging to appease consumer needs. TC Transcontinental Packaging manufactures flexible packaging for store brands, including fresh products. Casey says flexible packaging can fit the consumer’s on-the-go lifestyle with convenience features such as zippers, handles, spouts and venting for microwaving. Oven cook-in can even be added to bags and pouches, she adds. One of the latest ready-to-eat conveniences to enter the supermarket perimeter through flexible packaging is in the produce section, Casey notes. “Flexible packaging is allowing retailers the ability to offer consumers

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fresh-cut product packed in-store with a value-added steamable feature,” she says. “Consumers can take advantage of grab-ngo convenience, as well as enjoy healthy eating options that are simple and easy to prepare using the convenience of their microwave.” Casey says flexible packaging offers excellent protection barriers that can be customized to accommodate almost any type of fresh product by incorporating the barrier properties and macroand micro-perfing technology to keep products fresh. THE “FOUR PS” OF PACKAGING Glen Adamik, director of strategic marketing for Commerce, Calif.-based Elkay Plastics, which also offers flexible packaging, says the most important functional aspects of packaging as they pertain to fresh foods are the “four Ps,” but not the same four Ps of marketing, which are product, price, placement and promotion. “When it comes to packaging for food, I tell my team there’s a different set of ‘Ps’ to be mindful of, which encapsulate the value packaging ought to deliver: presentation, protection, preservation and proposition,” Adamik says. Presentation means the package needs to present its contents in an aesthetically appealing way, he says. Protection means the package needs to protect products from the rigors of not only production, but shopper handling. Preservation cites that sealed, but often breathable packaging, needs to help extend, or at least not inhibit, product shelf life, according to Adamik. And proposiFlexible packaging is allowing retailers the ability to offer consumers fresh-cut product packed in-store with a valueadded steamable feature, such as TC Transcontinental Packaging’s Steam N’ Eat Pouch.

Store Brands /May 2019 / www.storebrands.com

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A d ve rt o ri a l

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Alpha Packaging Marketing VP Marny Bielefeldt talks sustainable packaging

How does Alpha Packaging define “sustainable packaging”? “Sustainable packaging” can mean different things to different brands, depending on what their product is and what they are trying to achieve. We typically define something as sustainable if it uses fewer raw materials – either through reduced package weight or through recycled content that replaces virgin material. Sustainable can also encompass materials made from renewable resources – such as plant-based plastics. When customers ask to see our “sustainable options,” we take them through a series of questions to determine the options that might be right for their products, customers and retail environment.

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Alpha Packaging has made it clear that it wants to lead in sustainable packaging. Talk about your goals here. To be a leader in sustainability, a packaging manufacturer needs to make sustainable solutions available to a greater number of brands, and needs to take a leadership role in educating brand owners about the right options for their brand. Historically it has been the larger consumer product companies that had access to bio-based resins and packaging made from recycled content. Alpha wants to make recycled-content packaging available to more companies through smaller minimum order quantities, and we want to educate emerging brands about all the options that can help them take steps in the right direction.

How is e-commerce driving changes in your sustainable packing strategy? E-commerce drives two competing pressures for all packaging, including sustainable packaging. First, it creates the desire for less and lighter-weight packaging to minimize shipping costs where possible, which is a sustainable objective as well. But counter to that, e-commerce also requires packaging that is sturdy enough to make it through tough shipping conditions – so taking out too much weight in a bottle or jar could lead to crushing or leaking during shipping. At Alpha, we look for solutions that minimize the bottle’s weight without compromising its performance.

Talk about what you are doing specifically in this segment for consumer packaged goods. Most of the sustainable options we offer to CPGs fall into one of four categories: recycled post-consumer resins (PCR) for both PET and HDPE resins; recyclable packaging made from PET or HDPE; plant-derived (bio-based) resins; and light-weighted bottles and jars that use less resin per bottle.

What challenges in this segment has Alpha Packaging had to meet to become a more sustainable packaging supplier? In order to become a sustainable partner, we have had to invest in research and development to run new resins and explore new additives our customers are interested in. We’ve also had to make a commitment to find FDA-approved sources for all sustainable resins, and run 100% recycled content in both PET and HDPE plastics. What needs to happen to advance the use of packaging made from renewable resources? Two things need to happen to advance the use of resins made from renewable sources. First, the packaging needs to perform as well as conventional packaging materials (oxygen barrier characteristics, heat tolerance, moisture vapor transmission, etc.). Second, there needs to be a legitimate way to recycle or incinerate bottles made from non-traditional, plant-based resins so that these packages are not doomed to join a landfill or contaminate the existing plastic recycling streams.

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PACKAGING DIGIMARC, WALMART COLLABORATE TO REDUCE FRESH FOOD WASTE AND IMPROVE EFFICIENCY, ACCURACY AT CHECKOUT Beaverton, Ore.-based Digimarc Corp. is collaborating with Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart to improve the management of packaged fresh foods. Digimarc, the inventor of the Intuitive Computing Platform (ICP) featuring Digimarc Barcode, said the program is intended to reduce fresh food waste and provide everyday lowest prices by automating the markdown process. “We are working closely with Digimarc to innovate and apply new technologies that will aim to reduce waste, help improve our overall store operations and improve customer experience,” said John Crecelius, senior vice president of central operations at Walmart. “As we apply this new technology to our fresh processes, our goal is to realize new customer benefits while accelerating our commitment to reduce waste.” The scope of the companies’ partnership on improving efficiency and accuracy of checkout has been expanded through technology development and business process engineering to include waste reduction by automating many aspects of packaged fresh food inventory management. Fresh product labels can be crinkled, smudged, wrapped around edges or fraudulently altered, which contribute to product shrinkage, lower inventory accuracy and suboptimal customer experiences, according to Digimarc. The Digimarc Barcode for Fresh Product Labels makes scanning more reliable, simplifies operations, improves inventory accuracy and provides a better customer experience, the company states. 34

PACKAGING

tion states that the package needs to act as a medium for conveying a brand’s value proposition, knowing it will be read both in-store and at home. The four Ps of packaging should also be in-sync with transparency, Adamik notes. “Going beyond just the listed ingredients on the label, it’s also important to consumers to see the physical product before purchase,” he says. “They can determine on their own how fresh and how healthy the product is. Seeing the product through packaging also provides inspiration for consumers. The trend toward clear containers or transparent window packaging is definitely growing.” Sustainability in fresh packaging is also in increased demand. “Consumers are demanding sustainable products that are recyclable or compostable,” Casey says. “They wish to contribute to a better environment, starting with what they consume and reducing packaging waste. They are also asking to understand how recycling works, and how they can make a significant impact. There are definitely opportunities to educate them on the topic.” Casey says TC Transcontinental Packaging offers products that have less of an environmental impact throughout their entire life cycles. “For example, flexible packaging is light and can be transported better,” she says. “Our Hot N Handy bag for chicken greatly reduces the number of truckloads required for delivery compared to the average chicken dome. This feature reduces the carbon footprint produced during transportation.” Casey says TC Transcontinental Packaging wants to create a circular economy where all the players from sourcing, manufacturing and endof-life management are involved and accountable to create the perfect sustainable package. “We believe that we need to work as a team to reach this objective together,” she states. Adamik says fresh department shoppers still have to satisfy both their desire for freshness as well as for convenience. He also says shoppers are ripe for packaging made of compostable material,

and notes that Elkay Plastics is responding to this by releasing a new line of fully compostable bags in June. “Plastic is still the hero of presenting, preserving and protecting food, and we have plenty of reasons to celebrate its benefits, Adamik adds. “At the same time, we continue to develop packaging options that might not include plastic at all in a continuous attempt to just make packaging better.” THE FUTURE As the fresh category continues to grow, so will packaging capabilities. New packaging designs that minimize waste and costs while still delivering on consumer conveniences will continue to grow, Casey says. “Convenience features will be in high demand,” she adds. “Also, singleserve and controlled-portion packaging appeals to several different consumer demographics in the fresh produce section. They allow consumers to snack healthy without being concerned with measuring to determine the nutritional content of a single-serving size.” Adamik says packaging of the future will likely be relied upon more to assist with maintaining an unbroken cold chain as home delivery continues to grow. “In stores’ fresh departments, packaging will likely need to accommodate more on-site packing — such as branded containers for bespoken meals or ingredient collections — or packaging that helps processors deliver goods that appear to have been packed in the store,” he says. “We’re even seeing changes to store lighting — from incandescent to LED — prompting changes to certain packaging material in an effort to optimize presentation.” Kantar’s Gundelach predicts that consumers will keep pushing for more sustainable packaging in the future. “We already see packaging-free stores popping up,” she adds. “While [those stores] will most likely remain a niche trend, manufacturers should expect shoppers to demand improvements in the suitability of packaging compared to where we are today. Younger shoppers in particular want to see less plastic and just less packaging used overall.” SB

Store Brands /May 2019 / www.storebrands.com

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CATEGORY INTELLIGENCE CANDY AND CHOCOLATE

SWEETENING THE POT Candy sales are robust, for sure, but it’s about more than just feeding all the sweet teeth out there. Premium, gourmet confections are driving growth in the chocolate sector while indulgence and new experiences form the hook in the non-chocolate sector, according to market researcher Packaged Facts. However … Consumer concerns about the perils of excess sugar consumption have limited the category’s growth potential, leading companies to amp up development of health-conscious confections as a remedy, Packaged Facts notes. Healthy snacking trends, powered at least in part by fears over the specters of diabetes and childhood obesity, coexist with the enduring love of indulgent treats. Marketers could benefit by developing betterfor-you candies featuring nutritious ingredients or inclusions such as nuts, seeds, botanicals and fruit, Packaged Facts advises. Additionally, marketers could respond to growing consumer demand for clean labels and transparency by offering natural, organic and minimally processed products; lowering sugar content; avoiding artificial, GMO and other controversial ingredients; offering information on ingredient sourcing and processing; and addressing eco-consciousness, fair trade and sustainability concerns. U.S. market demand for non-chocolate candy rose an average of 4.9% a year from 2007 to 2017 and is forecast to climb 3.7% annually until 2022, according to Packaged Facts’ “Non-Chocolate Candy: U.S. Market Trends and Opportunities,” published in November. U.S. market demand for chocolate confections is expected to rise 2.8% annually until 2022, according to Packaged Facts’ “Chocolate Candy: U.S. Market Trends and Opportunities,” published in October. Total U.S. retail dollar sales of non-chocolate candy are expected to register $10.9 billion for 2018, according to Packaged Facts. Chocolate candy sales are estimated to be more than twice that for 2018, at $23.1 billion. FEELING GOOD Consumers want to feel good about the sweets they treat themselves to, industry observers say. Led by their dominant demographic, millennials are highly informed and motivated to seek information about what to buy, says Eric Holler, vice president of national sales for the retail division of Quality Candy Co. LLC in Henderson, Nev.

“They want a cleaner ingredient deck. They want environmentally sound packaging and sourcing,” Holler explains. A manufacturer of hard and soft sugar candy, Quality Candy’s new brand, BETTER4Ü, is billed as the world’s first no-sugar, no-artificial ingredient, organic candy. Following European trends, U.S. retailers and consumers alike want ethically produced, sustainable chocolate, says José Anotonio Camúñez, Natra sales director for the Americas in Toronto. The demand for confections with less sugar and products with sustainable, organic and clean ingredients is strong, he adds. Based in Madrid, Natra is a Spanish multinational corporation and producer of chocolate confectionery, spreads and cocoa products for private label and other food companies. Consumers are paying closer attention to labels than they have in the past, seeking out food products that offer fewer and more familiar-sounding ingredients, says Darin Ciavarella, the cocoa and chocolate retail channel lead for Minneapolis-based Cargill, Inc. “They are also looking for food that was produced in a way that aligns with their ethical values, and cocoa and chocolate are no exception to this.” Better-for-you confectionery products and ingredients is a trend that continues to grow, notes Margaret Roeder, director of business development for Kruger North America in Oak Park, Ill. “Reducing the non-healthy aspects of candy [by

DO consider offering more premium products to consumers who are willing to pay for them. DON’T forget the importance of offering better-foryou options.

www.storebrands.com / May 2019 / Store Brands

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CATEGORY INTELLIGENCE CANDY AND CHOCOLATE Chocolate Candy

Private Brands

All Brands

Dollar Sales (in millions)

$204.2

$11,317.6

Change vs. Year Ago

7.9%

0.6%

Dollar Share

1.8%

100%

Unit Sales (in millions)

74.2

4,996.2

Change vs. Year Ago

7.0

0.4%

Avg. Price Per Unit

$2.75

2.27

Non-Chocolate Candy

Private Brands

All Brands

Dollar Sales (in millions)

$363.4

$5,446.6

Change vs. Year Ago

-4.1%

2.3%

Dollar Share

6.7%

100%

Unit Sales (in millions)

257.1

2,904.5

Change vs. Year Ago

-5.6%

-0.3%

Avg. Price Per Unit

$1.41

$1.88

Source: Market Advantage, IRI Liquid Data, IRI, a Chicago-based market research firm. Total U.S. multi-outlet (grocery, drug, mass market, military and select club and dollar retailers) for the 52 weeks ending Jan. 27, 2019.

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using less sugar and no high fructose corn syrup] or adding beneficial ingredients [such as super foods] is what seems to be a major category trend,” Roeder adds. Kruger North America is the U.S. branch of The Kruger Group, based in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany. Its private label product categories include chocolate and non-chocolate confections. Flavor innovations, particularly seasonal flavors that offer novelty, remain an important approach to standing out on shelves with relevant, exciting products, Ciavarella says. Some examples, he adds, include cinnamon for the winter holidays, salted caramel during the fall and s’mores flavors for the summertime. In packaging, concerns about protecting the environment are growing, observes Barry Rosenbaum, president of Hicksville, N.Y.-based Nassau Candy, a manufacturer, importer and distributor of specialty confections, gourmet foods and perishables. “We’re seeing a big movement in packaging toward protecting the environment, and we’re going to see [the trend toward] environmentally appropriate packaging grow,” he adds. In the chocolate and confectionery space, packaging and formats are evolving to meet consumers’ changing lifestyles, including resealable packaging for on-the-go consumption as well as single-serve formats and sizes for portion control, Ciavarella says. SB

Store Brands / May 2019 / www.storebrands.com

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CATEGORY INTELLIGENCE BABY CARE

BABY BOOM

DO consider selling private brand organic formula at a lower price. DON’T forget millennials are looking for private label baby lotions and soaps.

One of the most important questions swirling around the minds of parents with a baby is: What do we feed our child? These days, the answer to that question is frequently clean label, organic and, most important, private brand. We all know that an increasing number of consumers are spending more time and money than ever before on their health and wellness, including buying more organic and clean-label food. In 2018, U.S. organic food sales rose nearly 9% over the previous year, surpassing $21 billion, according to market researcher Nielsen. That growth has expanded to include the baby care category, as more parents are looking for free-from and natural products for their infants and toddlers just like they are shopping for themselves. One of the driving forces behind this clean-label trend in baby food and baby care products is millennials. This group of consumers, born between 1980 and 1999, are laser-focused on health and wellness and many of them are now having babies. According to market researcher Information Resources Inc. (IRI), sales of baby food reached $1.6 billion during the 52 weeks ending Feb. 24, 2019, with private brands accounting for nearly $82 million of sales, a whopping 10.8% increase. Sales of baby formula reached $4.3 billion during the same period, with private brands accounting for nearly $3.2 million of sales, a decline of 2.2%. Suppliers say a lion’s share of those private brand sales in baby food are increasingly made up of free-from and organic products. “Like many other categories, the private brands baby segment has seen a trend toward organic over the last few years,” says Scott Thornton, vice president of sales for Private Brands Consortium PBC Inc., a Montreal-

Baby Formula/Electrolytes Private Brands

All Brands

Dollar Sales (in millions)

$321

$4.3

Change vs. Year Ago

-2.2%

0.8%

Dollar Share

7.3%

92%

Unit Sales (in millions)

366

34

Change vs. Year Ago

-1.4%

-1.1%

Avg. Price Per Unit

$9.34

$16.37

Source: IRI, a Chicago-based market research firm. Total U.S. multi-outlet (grocery, drug, mass market, military and select club and dollar retailers) for the 52 weeks ending Feb. 24, 2019.

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based private brands supplier focused on baby foods. “Consumers are also looking for healthy, organic snacking items for their babies and toddlers.” Thornton says his company is getting a lot of requests for new products to have healthy grains, fruits and plant-based proteins added to them and, like adult snacks, products with reduced sugar and sodium. Another relevant trend is “Eat Your Colors,” where bright and engaging colors like blue, green, oranges and purple encourage better eating habits from the beginning. Super foods are also playing a significant role. It’s not just about what the product doesn’t contain, it’s also about the value add it may provide in every serving, suppliers say. “We are developing with the millennial mom in mind,” says Sharvari Dayal, product marketing manager of store brands for Baxters Food Group in Cincinnati. “Millennial moms will turn to private label for an affordable solution as long as it delivers on a trusted and quality feeding solution.” In addition to baby food, other baby care products that are hot in private label include personal care items that are organic but perform as well or better than their conventional counterparts. “The educated consumer is looking to replace nearly all of their traditional baby products with natural and organic versions,” says Amanda Chawansky, sales manager for Taos, N.M.-based Private Label Select, a company that develops and manufactures natural and organic personal care and cosmetics products, including salves and balms for infants and mothers, for major retailers. “For example, organic chest rub with essential oils, natural diaper creams with zinc oxides, botanical oils replacing mineral baby oils, etc.,” Chawansky says. Ensuring retailers stay current with the ever-changing demands of parents and ingredient trends will be a challenge, Dayal says. The product set has to evolve with consumer trends that will command constant category review and close collaboration between retailers and manufacturers. “That’s particularly true for private brand infant feeding options because the ante gets upped with the price/value equation and an expectation that innovation isn’t just able to be delivered by national brands,” she says. “Private brands have an even more important place at the table — even for baby — so innovation has to be a key focus.” SB

Store Brands / May 2019 / www.storebrands.com

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CATEGORY INTELLIGENCE BAKERY, DOUGH AND ROLLS

IN SEARCH OF A BREAD BOOST

o

DO create some excitement around items in the category — reminding consumers that it’s fun to break bread.

Bread is becoming a victim of its own success. Because the product has almost universal household penetration, merchandisers are facing the steep challenge of finding ways to grow activity, and even sustain interest in light of evolving shopper attitudes. Revenues in the $21 billion category rose just 1% from 2017 to 2018 and only 5% since 2013, states market researcher Mintel, which also forecasts slow expansion over the next five years with sales likely to increase just 5% through 2023. Indeed, 21% of shoppers indicate that they decreased their bread consumption in 2018 compared to the previous year, while 16% had an increase in consumption, Mintel notes in its July 2018 “Packaged Bread US” report. “The category’s largest segment, fresh loaf bread, continues to be especially sluggish, suggesting that consumers are turning to alternative types of breads and/or are cutting back,” Mintel notes. More than two-thirds of the consumers who are moving away from the category cite carbohydrate reduction as a key influencer, which suggests that

DON’T forget to promote freshness and quality, and use packaging and sampling to spotlight product attributes.

40

lighter, reduced- or low-carb options are needed to stem the attrition, Mintel states. Yet, Mintel research also found that most consumers are not actively looking to expand consumption, and many are indicating that health benefits and other attributes would not sway them to eat more. “This suggests that most nutritional needs are already being met or, more likely, that nutrition isn’t top of mind with bread,” Mintel states. “Any significant growth for the category will have to come from increased consumption of less widely and commonly used bread types. Consistent communication of everyday uses and occasions may be a spark for increasing consumption.” Merchandisers also are more likely to generate excitement and increase trial by responding to shoppers’ interest in freshness and quality, and using packaging and sampling to spotlight attributes, Mintel notes. “Brands in each segment should accentuate their different strengths, benefits and best uses as well as other advantages that consumers might not be aware of yet,” Mintel reports. “Demonstration of versatility of both products and their individual strengths may encourage consumers to eat different types of bread more often for different needs.” Because most bread consumption occurs at breakfast, lunch and dinner, positioning bread for snacking or appetizing may also help to spur additional purchases. “Bread is routine, and consumers seem to be stuck following the same practices,” Mintel reports. However, with most consumers apparently open to trying unfamiliar products, category expansion is possible. “To grow the category in all segments, it will be essential to encourage trial of underutilized products, challenge routines and create some excitement around these seemingly mundane bread occasions,” Mintel states. “Reminding consumers that it’s fun to break bread.” That includes responding to shoppers’ interest in breads with healthier ingredients, which have more global flavor profiles, says Gerri Krenner, director of sales and marketing for National Choice Bakery, a

Store Brands / May 2019 / www.storebrands.com

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CATEGORY INTELLIGENCE BAKERY, DOUGH AND ROLLS South St. Paul, Minn.-based bagel supplier. “Products with whole grains, sprouted and ancient grains and seeds are becoming more popular,” she notes. In addition, it’s important for retailers to leverage the shelf space that will best spotlight their store brands, promote products via social media and call out desirable elements, Krenner says, which for millennials and Generation Zers include freshness and the use of grains and natural ingredients. “Consumers perceive private label to supply high quality and value,” she states. “Retailers should tout those attributes and health claims on the front panel of attractive packages.” THINK OUTSIDE THE CENTER STORE The bakery departments of retail outlets,

Fresh Bread

Private Brands

All Brands

Dollar Sales (in millions)

$1,791.1

$8,949.7

Change vs. Year Ago

-7.1%

-0.1%

Dollar Share

20.0%

100%

Unit Sales (in millions)

1,111.5

3,582.3

Change vs. Year Ago

-10.5%

-4.5%

Avg. Price Per Unit

$1.61

$2.50

Hamburger and Hot Dog Buns Private Brands

All Brands

Dollar Sales (in millions)

$772.7

$2,095.8

Change vs. Year Ago

-1.3%

-1.6%

Dollar Share

36.9%

100%

Unit Sales (in millions)

610.7

1,131.8

Change vs. Year Ago

-0.5%

-2.2%

Avg. Price Per Unit

$1.27

$1.85

All Other Fresh Rolls/Buns/Croissants Private Brands

All Brands

Dollar Sales (in millions)

$511.3

$1,930.6

Change vs. Year Ago

-1.6%

+1.7%

Dollar Share

26.5%

100%

Unit Sales (in millions)

203.2

650.7

Change vs. Year Ago

-6.3%

-1.8%

Avg. Price Per Unit

$2.52

$2.97

Source: InfoScan Reviews, IRI, a Chicago-based market research firm. Total U.S. supermarkets, drugstores, mass market retailers, military commissaries and select club and dollar retail chains for the 52 weeks ending Feb. 24, 2019. 42

meanwhile, are improving their bread revenues, increasing 1.4% in 2018 versus a year earlier, with rolls and buns having a 1.1% gain and bagels a 5.6% increase, states the “2019 Power of Bakery” report. Bread revenues from in-store bakeries grew 1.3%, while rolls and buns had a 3.3% gain. The “2019 Power of Bakery” is published by the Washington, D.C.-based American Bakers Association and the Arlington, Va.-based Food Marketing Institute. Research was conducted by San Antonio-based 210 Analytics LLC and Cincinnati-based Todd Hale LLC. Because consumers are increasingly looking to experiment with new items, flavors, ingredients, brands and ethnic selections, retailers can benefit by providing samples of novel offerings while leveraging eye-catching displays, states AnneMarie Roerink, a 210 Analytics principal. Indeed, she notes that bakeries are experiencing big growth with “small sellers,” including croissants and artisan breads, while bagels, specialty rolls, corn bread and naan bread are among the fastgrowing items that retailers produce in-store. “Success lies with staying on top of consumer trends and wants regarding item types, attributes and ingredients,” Roerink says. “This means frequent and constant innovation, which isn’t always easy for store brands.” Retailers, she states, can effectively support store brands by cross-merchandising private label bread selections with other items in the store to drive trial, developing a consistent private label look for bakery products, and responding to shopper interest in health and transparency. About 75% of shoppers look for specific ingredients and seek certain nutritional callouts when buying functional items from the bakery, including bread, rolls and buns, the “2019 Power of Bakery” states. “Big wants are whole grains and multi-grains, which are driven by baby boomers, and the absence of artificial ingredients in breads, which is millennial-driven,” Roerink notes. Indeed, the shift in consumer preferences toward premium selections is narrowing the market for conventional bread products, states John Madigan, lead industry research analyst with market researcher IBISWorld Inc., in the company’s December “2018 Bread Production in the US” report. “In order to attract health-conscious consumers, some operators have introduced alternatives that are more nutritious, while others have extended their product offerings to include premium, specialty varieties,” he notes. SB

Store Brands / May 2019 / www.storebrands.com

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CATEGORY CLOSEUP

$15.99 The price of a baked in-store Costco Wholesale brand sheet cake, which serves 48 people.

20.7 % 73%

Millennials and Gen Z consumers surveyed in 2019 who have purchased baked goods in the last week. Source: American Bakers Association

33.1%

$13.8

60%

Growth in sales of baked goods online in 2018.

Consumers who say they do not look for specific brands when purchasing fresh bakery items.

Source: IRI

Source: IRI 2018 Baked Goods Omnibus Report

BILLION

Source: IRI

Unit volume growth last year of private label dairy puddings and desserts, one of the five leading supermarket categories in unit volume growth. Source: PLMA

$46.3

Total bread and baked goods sales in 2018, split between the fresh bakery department and items located in the center store, frozen and dairy departments, for the 52 weeks ended March 20, 2019. The categories grew a combined 1.5% between 2018 and 2019.

Baked Goods/Desserts

$24 BILLION

Sales of high-fiber baked goods in U.S. in 2018. Source: Euromonitor International

BILLION

In-store fresh bakery sales in 2018.

“Americans will always love cookies, and growth will be driven by both private label and premium products that deliver more nutrition or indulgence with unique flavors and formats.� David Sprinkle, research director, Packaged Facts

Source: American Bakers Association and Food Marketing Institute

www.storebrands.com / May 2019 / Store Brands

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SUSTAINABLE Ensure your brand delivers the message that matters. Consumers are looking for products with sustainability and sourcing messages on the packaging. Ask us how we can help build your brand with responsible sourcing and recyclable packaging.

CONTACT MASSIMO ZANETTI BEVERAGE USA TO FIND OUT MORE! corporatebrands@mzb-usa.com | www.mzb-usa.com

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Profile for ensembleiq

Store Brands - May 2019  

Store Brands - May 2019