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Retail News DECEMBER 2019

Ireland’s Longest Established Grocery Magazine


ELECTRONIC CIGARETTE — CONTAINS NICOTINE NICOTINE IS AN ADDICTIVE SUBSTANCE

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Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie|1

Contents News

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Thanks for your support 2019 was a funny old year. On the one hand, it was a story of reasonable economic growth, as we returned to almost full employment. On the other, the every-moving spectre of Brexit meant that consumer confidence remained a bit jittery. Plus, the employment market, combined with the high cost of living, meant that many retailers found it difficult to attract and retain staff. The new Apprenticeship in Retail Supervision, the first national apprenticeship programme for the sector, from Retail Ireland Skillnet, should go some way to addressing this issue. See full story on Page 5. Hopefully 2020 will bring some certainty, and that by the time you read our January/February issue that we will know just what kind of Brexit we are dealing with and be able to plan accordingly. Many of the country’s biggest retail groups reflect on the impact of Brexit and all the other issues that faced the FMCG market in 2019 in our annual Retail Groups Report (Page 39-66), as well as predicting what we will face in the coming year. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the groups, the suppliers, wholesalers, distributors and all who make up this wonderful sector for supporting Retail News throughout 2019, and to wish you all a very happy and busy Christmas season and a peaceful and profitable new year. Kathleen Belton Editorial & Marketing Director

why the company’s long-standing commitment to limiting its environmental impact is more relevant now than ever.

Retailers frustrated by inability to share information about criminals.

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Musgrave announces sustainability agenda; Aldi launches Food for Good campaign.

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FDI launches 10-year strategy for industry; Aldi wins corporate impact award; Keynote speaker announced for CSNA Conference.

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Ireland’s first retail apprenticeship programme launched; Heineken Ireland wins sustainability award; Carbery Group secures €35m EIB backing.

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Newspaper buyers worth €1.9 billion annually to the retail sector; 88% of Irish food SMEs expect growth in 2020.

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The Food Safety Consultative Council hosted an open meeting to review and debate the role of plastic in the food sector: Food and Plastic – A Question of Taste?

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The Irish Grocers Benevolent Fund annual Christmas lunch was one of the social events of the year, raising valuable funds for this most worthy of causes.

Tetra Pak 23

Nazanin Moradi, Tetra Pak’s sustainability expert, explains

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Managing Director: Patrick Aylward Editorial & Marketing Director:

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Kathleen Belton

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Email: ciara@tarapublications.ie Reproduction without written permission is strictly prohibited.

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A new report into the Irish bakery sector reveals the factors that would make consumers buy more bakery products, helping retailers to target key customer groups. Aaron Dodd reports.

Flahavan’s 33

Flahavan’s provides tips on how to Stay Unflappable while Christmas shopping, to celebrate the launch of two new flavours in its Flapjacks range.

Retail Groups Report 39

The annual Retail News review of the biggest retail brands in the country, as the groups reflect on the last 12 months and predict what 2020 might bring for Irish grocery retailing.

39

On the Vine 70

Jean Smullen looks back over the year in the wine trade, including the continued rise of Spanish wine on the Irish market.

Regulars & Reports

Ireland’s Longest Established Grocery Magazine

Wine Correspondent: Jean Smullen

Four SuperValu stores have won top awards at the Edward Dillon & Santa Rita Estates SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards.

Bakery

IGBF Christmas Lunch

Retail News Chief News Reporter: Pavel Barter

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Grocery market on strong footing ahead of Christmas rush.

Food & Plastic 16

SuperValu Off Licence Awards

10 18 26 34 68 72

Industry News Retail Ireland: Monthly Update Drinks News Pizza Forecourt Focus Shelf Life


2|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

News

Retailers frustrated by inability to share information about criminals RETAILERS are unable to prevent shoplifting due to their inability to share information about serial offenders. This was one of the central concerns raised at the recent Garda National Strategic Retail Forum. While retailers in the UK can exchange images and information about shoplifters, data protection regulations (GDPR) prevent them from doing the same in Ireland. “We know criminal gangs move around the country, hitting retailers systematically and strategically,” said Thomas Burke, Director of Retail Ireland. “To counteract that, retailers need an understanding of who these people are and what their patterns are.” Retail Ireland is among the representatives working with the Data Protection Commissioner’s office to try and expand a retailer’s ability to communicate. “Our primary concern is to stay within the law,” said Burke. “Nobody wants to fall foul of the law. At the same time, it’s a serious issue if we can’t utilise CCTV to prevent crime and protect our staff.” Marcella O’Neill, proprietor of O’Neill’s Mace in Limerick, corresponds with other local retailers via a WhatsApp group, but she doesn’t share images due to GDPR regulations. O’Neill, a member of the Convenience Store and Newsagents Association (CSNA) executive and former President of the Association, was among those in attendance at last month’s forum, which is held Marcella O’Neill, member twice a year. of the CSNA Executive and The retailer, who retailer. owns a 3000 square feet newsagents, deli and grocery store, said that communication could be also improved between Gardaí and retailers. “When you’re in a shop, you’re on your own,” she said. “All you know are the problems coming in your door from people robbing you. You don’t know what the Gardaí are doing or how they are working behind the scenes. The guards take CCTV footage: that’s it. I felt, from the forum, that they are working for us. But there’s definitely a lack of communication.” Shoplifting remains an ongoing concern for small businesses, said Neil McDonnell, Chief Executive of the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (ISME), “and there has been a marginal increase in the last 12 months. Grocery is the sector most targeted for theft in shops. Christmas sees the biggest increase in retail theft.” One of the problems facing O’Neill’s Mace at present is a horde of youths arriving on bicycles, stealing as much as they can, then leaving. ISME raised this issue at the forum. McDonnell described it as “yamming, steaming or rushing, whereby a group of people target a shop or outlet by coordinating on social media and then proceeding to rob.” At the forum, Gardaí said they were aware of this new approach to theft and vowed to stamp it out. However, other areas of criminality are taking up their time. Gardaí have issued warnings to retailers, in recent times, over credit card fraud.

Incidents have involved customers arriving at the till with expired cards, fake cards, or no cards at all, and seeking cash-back. “We see spikes in this on occasion and it seems to be back again,” said Burke. “Over recent months, Neil McDonnell, Chief Executive of the the operations have become more Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association. sophisticated. Organised criminal gangs are moving around the country. The challenge is to educate our members as to the types of credit card fraud, what’s happening in terms of the pattern of behaviour, and to make sure their systems are in place to protect them.” Retailers appear to be increasingly vulnerable due to defamation laws. The current laws mitigate against shopkeepers from tackling shoplifting, believes McDonnell: “There is no ‘safe script’ for shopkeepers to use with individuals they suspect of theft - i.e. a formula of words which will protect them against an assertion by a plaintiff against a claim of defamation. Therefore, the best advice is to identify known shoplifters and refuse them entry to the store.” Yet with restrictions on sharing information about known shoplifters, retailers are hamstrung. “The law is never really on your side,” said O’Neill. “If a staff member asks a customer, ‘Did you pay for that?’, suddenly you’re being sued. I tell my staff now, ‘Don’t approach anyone, unless you are 100% sure’. You’re better to let them walk out with it, as much as you hate to do that. We’re in a society where suing is the quickest and easiest buck you can make.” ISME has advocated that Ireland changes its defamation act in order to stop libel shopping. RGDATA has also called upon the Gardaí to establish a separate unit to tackle exaggerated or fraudulent insurance claims. Tara Buckley, RGDATA’s Director, said that a Garda investigation unit could enforce consequences for fraudulent claimants. “If you rob a bank, you know there are serious consequences RGDATA Director General, if you are caught,” said Tara Buckley. Buckley. “If you decide to take a fraudulent insurance claim, there doesn’t seem to be many downsides. You might get paid a lump sum of money. If it’s found that the claim is untrue, there are no penalties. The Gardaí should be arresting those people.” Retail representatives told Retail News they were overwhelmingly in favour of the Garda National Strategic Retail Forum. Retail Ireland described it as an opportunity to explore


Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie|3

News how staff can be protected from instances of crime, and looked after in their aftermath. The Irish police force lack resources but they do not lack willingness, said Burke: “They are very open with us and fair with their time, providing people within the force to help us understand at a local level. Local knowledge is crucial when it comes to crime prevention.” O’Neill was in agreement. “There is a comfort in knowing someone is there: a name and a face you can talk to. We have a good community on William Street in Limerick. We’re proactive. The other day, we visited the local superintendant. He was helpful and took all our requests on board.” Retailers believe increased visibility on the streets is a

surefire way of driving down shoplifting. On a recent occasion, a youth ran out of O’Neill’s with a stolen drink and confectionery product. “Two guards happened to be passing and caught the offender,” she recalled. However, the shopkeeper is keen to point out that this was a rare occasion. Increasingly, retailers feel as though there is no line of defence between them and the criminals. “You worry about your staff; you worry about your customers,” said O’Neill. “You worry about yourself too. You’re at the frontline and you have no protection.” The Garda National Strategic Retail Forum recommends that victims of crime contact the Garda Victim Liaison Office (GVLO). (01) 6663349 email: crimevictims@garda.ie

Musgrave announces sustainability agenda MUSGRAVE has announced a range of new sustainability commitments across its operations and retail brands, including plans to reduce the company’s carbon footprint by 70% by 2025, the equivalent of removing 20,000 cars off the road per year or 29,000 tonnes of CO2. Musgrave’s ‘Taking Care of Our World’ sustainability strategy consists of 25 commitments to reduce impacts on the environment, improving the health of shoppers and support the well-being of people and communities. They include: • • • •

making 100% of its own brand, fresh produce and in-store packaging recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025; reducing the carbon impact of the company’s operations across the island of Ireland by 70% by 2025; operating all Musgrave facilities with 100% green electricity and sending zero recoverable waste to landfill; ensuring that food surplus is used to alleviate food poverty through partnerships with re-distribution charities and that food waste is minimised;

Launching the strategy, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton TD, argued that “Industry must show leadership in responding to what is the greatest challenge of our time”, noting how “the entire retail industry has a powerful role to play in tackling this issue.” Chris Martin, Musgrave Chief Executive, added: “We have a responsibility to make a difference to the health and well-being of our people, partners and consumers, whilst supporting the communities we serve and reducing our environmental impacts. The need for change is urgent,

particularly in areas such as health, climate change and plastics; Musgrave is committed to significant operational and behavioural transformation to leave a positive legacy for the generations that follow.” Meanwhile, Musgrave has agreed to acquire the brand and company assets of Drinks Inc, the Belfast-based independent drinks distributor, which is also the exclusive agent for premium brands and wineries including BrewDog, Dingle Distillery and the UK’s number one wine brand, Isla Negra. Drinks Inc will continue to trade as a stand-alone business.

Pictured at the launch of Musgrave’s sustainability strategy, ‘Taking Care of Our World’ at SuperValu Killester, Dublin, are (l-r): Chris Martin, CEO, Musgrave; Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton TD; and Edel Clancy, Director of Corporate Affairs, Musgrave.

Aldi launches Food for Good campaign IRISH households throw out €1.5 billion worth of food each year, peaking at Christmas time, when households waste 50% more - the equivalent of hundreds of thousands of Christmas dinners, according to a new survey conducted by iReach Insights on behalf of Aldi Ireland. The news came as Aldi launched its Food for Good campaign with FoodCloud, whereby from November 29 to December 8, Aldi customers could buy and leave food donations in their local store, so that it can be distributed to local charities. “Now in its second year, Aldi’s Food for Good campaign in cooperation with FoodCloud has helped to make Christmas that little bit brighter for those most in need,” said Aldi Group Buying Director, John Curtin.

Santa Claus is pictured at the launch of the Food for Good Christmas campaign in the Aldi Royal Canal Park Store, with Aldi Communications Director, Padraig Barry; co-founder of FoodCloud, Aoibheann O’Brien; and TV personality, Glenda Gilson.


4|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

News FDI launches 10-year strategy for industry FOOD Drink Ireland, the Ibec group that represents the food and drink industry, has launched a new report highlighting the critical importance of the sector to Ireland and the main strategic challenges and opportunities to be considered by policymakers over the next 10 years. The report makes detailed policy recommendations in the areas of skills, competitiveness, market development, innovation, and Paul Kelly, Director, Food sustainability. It also highlights that Brexit policy responses must Drink Ireland. address all scenarios from no deal to future relationship. Some of the recommendations outlined in the report include: •

Increase funding for enterprise-led skills development, open up the Employment Permit system to food processing operatives and increase the focus on automation and

• • •

digitalisation; Support an ambitious EU trade agenda that promotes trade both at multilateral and bilateral levels to secure additional market access in strategic growth markets at similar tariff levels to competitors; Ensure a strong focus on nationally funded research and development and involvement in transnational networks such as the EU’s Horizon programme; An effective implementation of the Climate Action Plan with financing supports for abatement measures, as well as sustainable packaging supports; Provision of the necessary resources to maintain our world class food safety regime.

Speaking at the launch of the report, Director of Food Drink Ireland, Paul Kelly stressed that one in eight jobs in the Irish economy are now linked to agri-food and drink. “Sustaining growth for the sector is imperative in sustaining the growth of the wider economy,” he said. “A hugely important measure to mitigate the risks and challenges faced by the sector is to implement policies to control our cost base, whilst providing support for companies to innovate and improve both productivity and sustainability.”

Keynote speaker announced for CSNA Conference THE Convenience Stores and Newsagents Association (CSNA) have announced that Brian Donaldson, Maxol Group CEO, has been confirmed as the first of a panel of keynote speakers at their much anticipated National Conference 2020, which takes place in Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel, Killiney, Dublin, on May 28. Brian is Director of Irish Petroleum Industry Association, Director of the International Board for NACS and newly appointed Chairman of Retail Ireland. CSNA CEO, Vincent Jennings, commented, “We are delighted to have Brian as a keynote speaker at our event. Brian has a wealth of experience in the forecourt and retail sector, we are thrilled that Brian will be sharing his experiences with attendees on the day.” For more information, see www.csna.ie. CSNA CEO, Vincent Jennings, & Maxol Group CEO, Brian Donaldson.

Aldi wins corporate impact award ALDI Ireland has been honoured with the Corporate Impact Award at the Irish Red Cross Humanitarian Awards 2019. The accolade recognises the retailer’s exemplary contribution to environmental projects such as carbon reduction and plastics and packaging initiatives. The reach and impact of Aldi’s work played a major role in securing the coveted award. “We are honoured to have been presented with the Corporate Impact Award by the Irish Red Cross,” said John Curtin, Group Buying Director. “As a company, we have strived to put Corporate Responsibility at the core of our activities. It is very important that our environmental projects form part of our core business. This award today signals that the work Aldi is doing is making a significant impact, and that is something that we as a company are extremely proud of.”

Derry Gray, Partner, BDO (left), presents the Red Cross Corporate Imact Award to Padraig Barry, Communications Director, Aldi Ireland.


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News Ireland’s first retail apprenticeship programme launched RETAIL Ireland Skillnet has launched Ireland’s first national apprenticeship programme for the sector. This landmark programme is notable for its 52% female participation rate, compared to an average of just Thomas Burke, Retail Ireland Director. 5% across other apprenticeship schemes in Ireland. “Acquisition and retention of talent has become increasingly

difficult across all sectors in Ireland as the economy experiences an increasingly tightening labour market,” noted Director of Retail Ireland, Thomas Burke. “In response, national retailers have come together to collaborate in the development of Ireland’s first National Apprenticeship for the retail sector. The Apprenticeship in Retail Supervision programme provides a new and exciting opportunity to attract and retain talented individuals in the industry, while helping further define clear career paths for those in the sector, assisting them on a path towards management roles in the industry. The programme employs an ‘Earn as You Learn’ model, inspired by similar German apprenticeship programmes.” Solas, the State Body with the responsibility for funding, planning and co-ordinating Further Education and Training, provides funding for the programme which ensures there is no registration fee for employers and apprentices.

Heineken Ireland wins sustainability award HEINEKEN Ireland has been named as winner of the Sustainability Project Impact Award at Bord Bia’s prestigious Food and Drink Awards. The award recognises companies that have planned and executed significant sustainability commitments in relation to sourcing, resource efficiency, health & nutrition and their contributions to their local communities. “This award marks the culmination of years of hard work in sustainability,” noted Kathryn D’Arcy, Director of Corporate Affairs. “The deadline on our current set of sustainability targets is 2020 and it is with real pride that we arrive at these deadlines, having surpassed several of those targets ahead of time. Setting our new 2030 targets has allowed us to renew our commitment and double down on our ambition in sustainability. To receive this award just as we start out on this phase of our sustainability journey assures us we are on the right path and inspires us to pursue our fresh goals with a renewed sense of determination and possibility.” Other winners at the Bord Bia Food & Drinks Awards included Diageo Ireland, who won the Diversity and Inclusion Award, while Leitrim’s The Shed Distillery, which makes Gunpowder Irish Gin, won the hugely competitive Brand Heineken Ireland’s Kathryn D’Arcy (left), Corporate Affairs Marketing Award. Director, and Dervla Arthurs, Brand Manager.

Carbery Group secures €35m EIB backing THE European Investment Bank (EIB) has agreed to provide a €35m loan to enable the expansion and diversification of the Ballineen facilities of Carbery Group, the leading international dairy, ingredients and flavours business. Carbery is 100% owned by four Irish dairy cooperatives. This is the first ever EIB financing for Carbery Group and will support the construction of a new €78m manufacturing plant at Ballineen, which will enable the company to diversify its range of cheeses and produce mozzarella for export to a range of international markets. “This long-term loan represents the first direct EIB support for investment in the Irish cooperative sector in 45 years and the first Irish investment under the EIB’s dedicated streamlined agriculture financing programme,” noted Jason Hawkins, CEO of Carbery Group, and Andrew Andrew McDowell, Vice President of the European Investment McDowell, Vice President of the European Investment Bank, responsible for agriculture and lending operations in Ireland. Bank.


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News Newspaper buyers worth €1.9 billion annually to the retail sector NEW consumer research from Behaviours & Attitudes reveals that newspaper purchasers spend an average of €14 per shopping trip, including the price of their newspaper, which generates an estimated €1.9 billion in direct and indirect sales to the retail sector. The quantitative study, commissioned by NewsBrands Ireland, the representative body for Ireland’s leading news publishers, took place in October 2019 and was conducted amongst a sample of 510 respondents nationwide in 24 stores. The study also found that: •

• • • •

The Irish newspaper buyer is a frequent and committed one – with a majority (54%) buying a paper three to seven days a week. The average newspaper purchaser picks up 1.2 papers per trip – rising to 1.4 papers on Sundays; 95% of those who had just purchased a newspaper that day had planned to do so before entering the store; Just over half of all newspaper purchasers will travel to another shop to buy their preferred title if it is not in stock; Newspaper impulse purchasing is highest amongst all 16-34-year-old buyers, one in six of whom only decided to pick up a newspaper while in the outlet; There are three triggers of equal importance for impulse newspaper buyers – headline impact, adjacency to other products planned to purchase, and positioning of the

newspaper display as encountered in-store; The most commonly purchased non-paper categories linked to newspaper purchasing are milk and bread, with reasonably high proportions also opting for something from the deli counter, and/or fresh produce.

“This research proves that newspapers remain a highly profitable retail product category,” noted Vincent Crowley, Chairman of NewsBrands Ireland. “Consumer behaviour and reading habits continues to shift and evolve but the fact is that three million newspapers are still sold every week. Our publishers are committed to working with retailers to help them maximise sales and drive valuable footfall into their stores.”

88% of Irish food SMEs expect growth in 2020 AN impressive 88% of Irish SME food companies expect revenues to rise in 2020, according to new research from PwC and Love Irish Food, despite sectoral challenges in the year ahead. However, just 6% Grace McCullen, Senior Manager, expect to achieve PwC Ireland Retail & Consumer price increases Practice, and Kieran Rumley, in current trading Executive Director, Love Irish Food. conditions, indicating that margin improvements will be derived from advances in technology and operational efficiencies.

Sustainability is high on the agenda, with 84% reporting that they have an environmental sustainability plan in place to make improvements in 2020. Brexit remains a concern, with 31% delaying investment in their businesses in the last three years due to Brexit. Kieran Rumley, Executive Director, Love Irish Food, said: “The survey highlights evidence of optimism amongst Irish SMEs around growth into 2020, notwithstanding a difficult trading environment. There are considerable challenges in areas such as availability of skills across the board from operational, to technical to management – which in turn highlights the need for a greater take-up of available apprenticeships in the industry.” Rumley warned, however, that “behind these positive signals, there remains the worrying inability of Irish food producers to recover adequate costs, forcing them to continue to operate on even tighter margins.”

Keelings selected as domestic winners KEELINGS Select won the Domestic Success Award at the Bord Bia Food & Drink Awards. Pictured are (l-r): Aisling Boggan, National Account Manager; Ger Foley, Leinster Account Manager; Cormac Dunlea, Business Development Manager - Cork; Caroline Keeling, Keeling Group Chief Executive; Colm Bury, Managing Director; Joe Bergin, Financial Director; Mariana Suvorova, Sales Executive – Dublin; Peter Thompson, Senior Sales Executive – Dublin; Alan Fay, Systems & Controls Accountant; and Timmy Moloney, Sales Executive – Tipperary.


SEASONS GREETINGS TO ALL RETAILERS & YOUR FAMILIES

THANK YOU FOR YOUR CONTINUED SUPPORT


8|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

News Grocery market on strong footing ahead of Christmas rush ALL of Ireland’s major grocery retailers achieved growth again in the 12 weeks to November 3, 2019, according to the Total Take Home Grocery - Ireland Consumer Spend latest figures from Kantar. On average, people visited stores 62 times in the 12 Weeks to 03/11/19 change** 12 Weeks to 04/11/18 %* %* % most recent period and shopped at four separate retailers, as more frequent Total Grocers 100.0% 100.0% 2.6 trips helped to drive sales. Total Multiples 88.6% 89.6% 3.8 “Overall shopper frequency SuperValu 21.4% 21.2% 1.5 Tesco 21.3% 21.1% 1.5 rose by 2.2% in the latest 12 weeks Dunnes 22.4% 22.8% 4.4 compared with last year, suggesting an Lidl 11.7% 12.0% 4.9 increase in people shopping around for Aldi 11.7% 12.5% 9.6 the best deals,” noted Charlotte Scott, Other Outlets** 11.4% 10.4% -6.2 Consumer Insight Director at Kantar. “This phenomenon is in no small part *= Percentage Share of Total Grocers thanks to the popularity of the discount **= Includes stores such as M&S, Boots, Spar, Centra, Greengrocers, Butchers And Cross Border shops supermarkets – their comparatively Dunnes’ growth of 4.4% was again the fastest among the smaller product ranges mean shoppers often visit them in three biggest retailers. Ireland’s largest supermarket also conjunction with other stores, where they top up on specific increased its market share by 0.4 percentage points, bringing items.” it to 22.8%. Dunnes will be anticipating further growth as we While overall market growth remained strong at 2.6% enter what is traditionally its strongest time of year. “Typically, this period, that is marginally slower than last month’s figure Dunnes performs well during the festive season as shoppers as consumers dialled back spending ahead of the run-up to trade up and are willing to spend more on premium items,” Christmas. “The slight deceleration in the past 12 weeks is explained Scott. “Last Christmas, the retailer recorded its largely down to shoppers being wary of spending and holding highest market share since March 2013 and having been top of back slightly ahead of the big Christmas rush,” Scott reveals. the retailer rankings for over a year now, it will be looking to “This month saw price per pack drop by 1%, indicating that break that record this December.” customers traded down in order to manage their spend. Aldi and Lidl enjoyed the fastest growth in the market this However, with Halloween now finished, we’re already seeing period, with sales increasing by 9.6% and 4.9% respectively. evidence of people getting in the festive spirit as 6.5% of us Shoppers visiting stores more often in the latest 12 weeks was have bought a mince pie – worth €383,000 to retailers so far key for both retailers, as new offers tempted people through this year.” their doors. “Aldi has placed increased focus on brands in Retailers responded well to this year’s cold and wet recent months, and as a result branded sales have increased October by pushing additional sales of classic winter warmer by 34.2%,” Scott revealed. “These items now make up 10.8% categories. Fresh soup grew by 9.9% this period, while hot of spend at the grocer, compared with just 8.8% this time last drinks were up 7.7%. Biscuits also benefited from those year. additional cups of tea and coffee, growing at 2.9%, with Tesco “Lidl, meanwhile, has looked to capitalise on the growing reaping the most reward from the trend, as biscuit sales at the popularity of meat-free alternatives by introducing vegan retailer grew by 10.8%, according to Scott. burgers and sausages to stores across the country. It’s no Overall, it has been a strong month for Tesco, which wonder the retailer sees potential in this market; some 40.4% was the only retailer to accelerate growth in the latest 12 of shoppers bought a vegetarian product in the latest 12 weeks weeks, increasing sales by 1.5%. It remains the third largest while meat-free burgers and grills have grown by 7.7% year on supermarket in Ireland with a 21.1% share of the market, just year,” the Kantar Director concluded. behind SuperValu at 21.2%. Both retailers performed well over Grocery market inflation stands at 1.2% for the 12 week Halloween, recording an additional €6m of confectionery sales period ending November 3, 2019. collectively.

ABP lifts sustainability award ABP was awarded the overall Sustainability Award at the recent Bord Bia Food and Drink Awards, recognising ABP’s success for creating a culture of sustainability throughout the business and in achieving its ambitious 2020 sustainability targets ahead of schedule. The company’s sustainability strategy “Doing more with less” is closely aligned to the UN Sustainable Goals. This strategy encompasses the entire supply chain from farms, to processing sites and the end consumer. Pictured are (l-r): Tara McCarty, CEO, Bord Bia, with Eoin Ryan and Fiona Geraghty from ABP Ireland.


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10|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Industry News BWG Foods wins innovation award BWG Foods and its Mace retail brand have received national recognition at the highly prestigious eir Spider Awards, which took place in the RDS recently, taking home the Best Innovation and Best Integrated Media Campaign awards respectively. BWG Foods received the Best Innovation award for its highly innovative Shoplink App, a feature rich e-commerce solution which brings the best of B2C technology to a B2B platform. Developed in conjunction with BWG Foods’ digital partner, Tribe Digital, ShopLink is a sleek, responsive and highperformance application that has quickly become the Group’s core stock ordering system and has transformed the ordering process for BWG Foods’ retail network of over 1,000 Spar, Eurospar, Londis, Mace and XL stores, and is expected to transact over €1 billion in revenue in 2019. Separately, Mace took home the Best Integrated Media Campaign Award for its Extra Smile campaign which featured Johnny Sexton as brand ambassador and was underpinned by a series of nationwide community initiatives, advertising and social media activations.

Tonic Wei Zhe Tang and Niamh Coleman, BWG Foods, are pictured accepting the eir Spider Award for Shoplink.

Mace Marketing Manager, Caitriona Cousins (right) and Mace Marketing Administrator, Michael Cazabon, receiving the Best Integrated Media Campaign award at the 2019 eir Spider Awards.

SuperValu Corbally wins Supermarket of the Year Award GARVEY’S SuperValu in Corbally, Limerick, has won the National Supermarket of the Year Award 2020 at the Retail Excellence Awards. Winning the store title is recognition of the exceptional standards that Garvey’s SuperValu in Corbally has attained, beating off 30 competing outlets from across the country thanks to its unquestionable commitment to meeting and exceeding customer expectations. Receiving the award, Gerard Walsh, Store Manager, paid tribute to his team and acknowledged that their enthusiasm and dedication to customer service was instrumental in the store winning the award: “Winning this award was an amazing team effort and we’re lucky to have great employees working for us who strive to deliver the best service, product offering and value for our customers day in day out, so being named National Supermarket of the Year is testament to their dedication.” Gerard and the Garvey’s team are pictured celebrating their win.

Iceland Ireland opens Blanchardstown store ICELAND Ireland has opened its 27th store in Ireland, at Mountview Shopping Centre in Dublin’s Blanchardstown, bringing 38 new jobs to the area. Opening in time for Christmas, the new flagship store covers just over 11,000 square feet, and will stock hundreds of big brands, as well as festive favourites, while also offering a convenient free home delivery service. “This flagship store will offer customers great quality foods at the best value on the market in a retail store environment with the customer very much at the heart,” noted Ron Metcalfe, Managing Director of Iceland Ireland.

Lidl launch 2019 Trolley Dash in support of Jigsaw LIDL Ireland gave customers across the country the chance to win their ‘big Christmas shop’ for the price of a €1 ticket, with 100% of the proceeds being donated to Lidl’s charity partner, Jigsaw - the National Centre for Youth Mental Health. Customers could purchase a €1 Trolley Dash ticket at the checkout in any of Lidl’s stores throughout Ireland, with the winners of each draw given the opportunity to do a ‘Supermarket Sweep’ style dash around their local Lidl store, grabbing as much of their Christmas shopping as they can in just two minutes. David Gillick, Irish International Track and Field Athlete, Lidl Ambassador and advocate for youth mental health (pictured), said, “The proceeds raised from initiatives such as the Lidl Trolley Dash all help to support the crucial work Jigsaw are doing with young people facing mental health issues, as well as their parents and guardians.”


QUALITY ASSURED

* Nielsen ROI Extended Scantrack, RMC SOM, YTD 6th October 2019. Outer must be removed before retail sale. Packs in this outer are Plain Packaging compliant. This advertisement is for tobacco retailers only and should not be made available to the public nor should it be displayed in any area where it is visible to the public.

Toradh caithimh tobac – bås. Smoking kills.


12|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Industry News Aldi ranked as Ireland’s most recommended retailer ALDI has been crowned Ireland’s most recommended retailer by consumers across the country in a new survey from market-research firm YouGov. YouGov’s 2019 Advocacy Rankings screened 77 brands to calculate their net recommendation scores for the period of November 2018-October 2019 and Aldi’s score surpassed all other retailers in Ireland, taking second position across all brands after streaming giant, Netflix. “We are constantly striving to offer customers the highest quality Irish products at market leading prices. Clearly this mission is succeeding, with so many people happy to endorse our business and recommend us to a friend or family member,” noted John Curtin, Aldi Group Buying Director.

Keelings CEO receives UCD Alumni Award CEO of Keelings, Caroline Keeling was one of nine graduates from UCD’s six faculties recognised at its 2019 Alumni Awards. Recognised by UCD for her numerous contributions to the growth of Irish food, both at home and abroad, Caroline Keeling has proven her commercial acumen in business. Under her tenure as CEO, the firm’s turnover has increased by more than 50% and Keelings now employs over 2,000 people.

Aurivo wins sustainability award AURIVO, the globally-focused agribusiness headquartered in the north-west of Ireland, was recently awarded the Most Sustainable Business 2019 accolade by Compass Group in recognition of its outstanding contribution to sustainability and the environment. Sustainability is a key focus of Aurivo’s five-year growth plan, Engage 2022, which has seen several sustainability measures introduced across the group under its sustainability strategy, including the recent launch of a 1.75L Tetra Rex Bio-based carton, which contains 75% less plastic than the previous 2 litre plastic bottle for its Connacht Gold milk brand. Pictured are (l-r): Chris Chidley, Managing Director, Compass Group Ireland; Tony Sweeney, Assistant Sales Manager, Aurivo; Sean Henry, Area Sales Manager, Aurivo; and Steven Cenci, Manging Director, Compass Group UK.

Lidl launch in-store ‘Waste Not’ initiative LIDL Ireland’s ‘Waste Not’ initiative is rolling out to all 200 Lidl stores across the island of Ireland, creating a significant price reduction on a range of chilled food products that have reached their best before date but are still perfectly fresh and fine to eat. Reduced products through ‘Waste Not’ will be clearly displayed and available to customers in a newly branded area in the chilled food section, and each store will refresh the area once a day to include a wide range of products for purchase, including fresh meat, poultry, fish, and chilled products such as prepared salads, cooked meats, milk and yogurts. “This initiative, launched by Lidl, will be welcomed by consumers, who are looking to retailers to employ more sustainable practices. Working individually and collaboratively, the entire retail industry has a powerful role to play in tackling this issue and it is welcome to see Lidl taking this positive step,” said Minister for Communications, Climate Action and the Environment, Richard Bruton TD, pictured with Deirdre Ryan, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at Lidl Ireland & Northern Ireland.

Deirdre O’Kane helps launch Tesco Ireland Christmas Food Appeal ACTRESS and comedian Deirdre O’Kane and Aaliyadh Farrell, aged four, urged shoppers throughout the country to donate generously as they partnered with Tesco Ireland to help launch the Annual Christmas Food Appeal, in partnership with FoodCloud. Now in its sixth year, the annual appeal took place across Tesco’s Extra and Superstores nationwide on November 29 and 30, encouraging shoppers to support those in need within their local communities this Christmas, by donating a product when they shop in-store this weekend.


Congratulations to our

AWARD WINNING Off Licences

Overall Centra Off Licence Exce llence Award: Donnellan’s Ce ntra, Loughville , Co. Clare

d Winner: Neighbourhoo n, Co Kilkenny w lto Pi , ra nt Ce Hickson’s

Most Improved Store: Deegan’s Centra, Urlingford, Co. Kilkenny

Convenience Wi nner: Reidy ’s Centra, Fo ynes, Co Limerick

Off Licence of the Year: Overall Winner SuperValu , Cork Ryan’s SuperValu Glanmire

Munster Off Licene Store of the Year: Hurley’s SuperValu Midleto n, Cork

Leinster Off Licence Store of the Year: Moriarty’s SuperValu Balbriggan,Dublin

nce Store of the Year: Connacht Ulster Off Lice macross, Monaghan rick Car alu erV Fleming’s Sup


14|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Industry News Tesco Ireland awarded Business Working Responsibly Mark

TESCO Ireland has been awarded the Business Working Responsibly Mark, Ireland’s leading standard for sustainability and CSR. The Mark is accredited by Business in the Community Ireland and is independently audited by the National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI). Tesco Ireland CEO, Kari Daniels, described the Mark as “an important affirmation that we are on the right path and is a vote of confidence for our colleagues, customers and communities”. Pictured are Jim O’Keeffe, Managing Director of Retail Banking, AIB; Kari Daniels, CEO, Tesco Ireland; and Tomas Sercovich, CEO, Business in the Community Ireland.

Irish Distillers named World Whiskey Producer of the Year

IRISH Distillers, producers of some of the world’s most enjoyed whiskeys, has taken home the World Whiskey Producer of the Year trophy at the International Wine and Spirits Competition. Irish Distillers scooped the respected accolade after scoring the highest number of medals across its portfolio of Irish whiskeys throughout the 2019 awards season, beating distillers from Japan, Ireland and the USA. The result follows an outstanding year of recognition for Midleton Distillery, which saw it claim 24 award wins, including the Worldwide Whiskey Trophy for Redbreast 12 Year Old Single Pot Still, which continues to be the most decorated single pot still Irish whiskey in the world. Pictured are: Paul Wickham, General Manager Midleton Distillery, Irish Distillers; Tommy Keane, Production Director, Irish Distillers; Sir George Fistonich, President, IWSC; Billy Leighton, Master Blender, Irish Distillers; and Dave McCabe, Blender, Irish Distillers.

Aldi unveils revamped Graiguecullen store ALDI’S store in Graiguecullen, Co. Carlow, store has reopened its doors to customers, following an extensive renovation project which saw the store completely refurbished as part of Aldi’s €160m investment in its Irish store network. Featuring the exciting new Project Fresh layout, Aldi’s Graiguecullen store offers a wide selection of fresh food at the front of the store, hi-spec fixtures and fittings and new signage that provides a more efficient and hassle-free shopping experience. There are also 96 car parking spaces available for customers, and the store will be powered by 100% green electricity.

Horgan’s awarded Authorised Economic Operator certificate CORK company Horgan’s Delicatessen Supplies Ltd has been awarded the coveted Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) certificate. AEO accreditation is awarded by customs authorities across the EU to a business that has proved it’s a ‘trusted trader’, is financially solvent and its supply chain is secure. The certification can go a long way in futureproofing businesses as the threat of Brexit looms on the horizon. “While no company can become Brexit-proof, Horgan’s Delicatessen Supplies Ltd has taken all the steps necessary to ensure we are as agile as possible, given the uncertainty that lies ahead,” said Michael Horgan, Managing Director at Horgan’s, pictured (centre) with William Harnedy, Operations/Warehouse Manager; Edward Horgan, Sales Manager; Paul Horgan, Purchasing Manager; and David Dowling, Technical/Quality Manager.

Guinness delivers festive cheer THIS Christmas, Guinness teamed up with An Post and Alone to transform beermats into festive postcards, so people could send festive message to friends and family at home and abroad. With every postcard sent, Guinness made a donation to Alone, helping them in their efforts to reduce loneliness and isolation in older people this Christmas. Postcards were available at over 100 pubs across the country, and could be posted at any post box free of charge. An Post also rolled out special edition Guinness ‘post boxes’ in selected pubs in Galway, Kilkenny, Meath and Dublin.


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16|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Food & Plastic

FSAI debates role of plastic in food sector ‘Food and Plastic – A Question of Taste?’, an open meeting hosted by the FSAI, provided a platform for experts to debate the use of plastic packaging in the food sector and the changing attitudes towards plastic use. THE Science Museum in Dublin proved the perfect backdrop for the The Food Safety Authority of Ireland’s (FSAI) Food Safety Consultative Council open meeting to review and debate the role of plastic in the food sector: Food and Plastic – A Question of Taste? The day involved an exploration of the role of plastics in the food sector and the consequences of its use. Television programmes such as Blue Planet have brought the impact of plastics on our environment very much into the public consciousness, painting plastics in a poor light and pushing the issue front and centre with consumers across the western world. It is true that plastic rubbish has had a huge impact on the natural world and that the way we are doing things now is simply not sustainable. However, it is also true that changing things will not be easy to do. Plastic is ubiquitous because it is so useful; without plastic packaging the supply chain as we know it cannot work. Transport of loose products over long distances is not practical and introduces huge cross-contamination risks. Alternative packaging types all have their own consequences and were they to become as frequently used as plastic, there is no doubt they would have a huge impact on the environment too. Utilising ‘good’ science A message repeated time and again on the day was the fact that we need to use good science to find solutions that will work for the long term and also be practical. That means that we will not only have to change the way we use plastics, we are going to have to change how we do everything and we need to change together: governments, brands, producers and consumers alike. According to Dr Pamela Byrne, CEO, FSAI, global production of plastics has increased twentyfold since the 1960s, with some 1.5m people employed in the plastic sector in Europe and over 25m tonnes of plastic waste generated every year.

Pictured are Anna Turrell, Head of Sustainability, Nestlé UK and Ireland; Ray Bowe, Chair, Food Safety Consultative Council; and Dr Pamela Byrne, CEO, FSAI.


Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie|17

Food & Plastic “Plastic is an important and ubiquitous material in our economy and daily lives,” noted Dr Byrne. “It has multiple functions that help tackle a number of the challenges facing our society. However, we need alternative packaging and plastic solutions which can still do what they need to do, but do not negatively impact the environment. That means research is needed into new plastic alternatives, which will be complex and take time, as there is no one solution to date.” The FSAI chief described packaging for food as “a necessity as it is important for food safety and preservation. It also avoids unnecessary food waste and associated carbon emissions. Packaging is critical for providing information to consumers on the ingredients, allergens, shelf-life and provenance of food and it is vital for regulatory authorities for enforcement and food traceability if there is a food safety issue and a food product needs to be recalled from the market.” Engaging with the public Ray Bowe, Chair, Food Safety Consultative Council, believes that events such as this open meeting give the general public an opportunity to engage with the FSAI around topics of common interest, such as the relationship between plastic and food safety in the food chain. Such engagement is going to be very important if we are to find solutions that will work for society. “Research is evolving and needs further depth to better inform the right decisions that will protect both the food chain and the planet for the future,” Bowe stated. “Now more than ever, the issue of plastic pollution is causing worry to the general public, but industry needs packaging solutions to ensure food is safe. The world is at a turning point, where the role that plastic plays in more sustainable ways of feeding people safely is at the heart of global debate.” Changing the view Jack O’Sullivan, Director, Zero Waste Ireland, called for a complete change in how people and industry use plastics, ”We have to take a totally different view of plastics - no longer manufacturing it for quick use and to be thrown-away; but either replace plastics entirely with other materials from renewable sources or manufacture sparingly and efficiently for long-term use and total recycling. We have to live within the carrying capacity of planet earth, and completely eliminate fossil fuels from our ‘diet’. This requires no more production of the plastics we currently use, all of which are made from oil derivatives. Instead there are plenty

Dr Pamela Byrne, CEO, FSAI, addresses the open meeting on Food and Plastic – A Question of Taste? of replacement substitutes which we can make from plant materials which are renewable and recyclable.” Microplastics and humans Focusing on microplastics in particular, Professor Gordon Chambers from Technological University Dublin’s School of Physics, Clinical and Optometric Science explained that, “Tackling plastic pollution represents a significant challenge to society. First, we have to break society’s addiction to single-use plastic to help turn the flow of plastic into the environment off. Secondly, we need to deal with the legacy plastic that is clogging our environment. This plastic litter degrades over time to produce tiny fragments of plastic called microplastics, which can potentially enter into the food chain and be subsequently consumed. Other pathways for exposure to microplastics exist; including airborne microplastics.” Professor Chambers did point out that there is no evidence of any specific health risk associated with microplastic exposure in humans. However, the lack of long-term studies on exposure to microplastics represents a significant knowledge gap in our understanding of these tiny entities and he suggested we need more research into the effects of long-term exposure. Nestlé’s plastic pledge Anna Turrell, Head of Sustainability, Nestlé UK and Ireland, outlined how Nestlé is committed and investing to deliver 100% recyclable or reusable packaging by 2025 across its vast portfolio of products. “As we work

towards the realisation of a circular economy for plastic, it is imperative that we work together as industry, government and civil society,” Turrell stressed. “Plastic packaging plays an important role in safely delivering food and drinks to consumers and reducing food loss and waste, so we need to carefully consider alternatives before making changes. We believe that with effective collaboration, collection and recycling of plastic is not only possible, but can catalyse the change required to create a more effective plastics system in which plastics never become waste. We are committed to being an active and progressive partner to find solutions, whilst moving ahead to deliver 100% recyclable or reusable packaging by 2025.” The Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences was established, dedicated to the discovery and development of functional, safe and environmentally friendly packaging solutions. Its focus includes recyclable, biodegradable or compostable polymers, functional paper, as well as new packaging concepts and technologies to increase the recyclability of plastic packaging. “New solutions will be tested in various product categories, before they are rolled out across Nestlé’s global portfolio,” Turrell explained. The only we way we are going to find solutions to the problem of plastic packaging is by using good science and working together across all parts of society to implement changes that provide solutions that work for all. The FSAI is keen to keep the conversation going and encourages people looking to learn more to visit FSAI.ie.


18|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Retail Ireland: Monthly Update Retail remains steady, but Brexit jitters endure RETAIL Ireland recently published its latest quarterly Retail Monitor. The report details that sales values grew by 2.3% in the second quarter of 2019, while sales volumes grew by 5.1% in the same period, demonstrating steady but unequal growth. After the modest second quarter, many in the retail sector were hoping that this quarter would be more robust. By and large, this was the case, but this growth has come from a low base. That said, there is cause for some guarded optimism from the overall data this quarter. However, with volume of sales far outpacing value, this further underlines the deep discounting that has become part and parcel of the sector. “One constant in the Irish retail landscape for some time now has been the trend for deep discounting,” Retail Ireland Director, Thomas Burke, explains. “Regardless of the category, it does appear that Irish consumers and by default, Irish retailers, are now addicted to price promotion as a sales driver and generator. This continues to pose a challenge for the retail sector, one which is likely to be exacerbated in the coming weeks as we approach the landmark discounting periods of Cyber Monday and Black Friday. Consumers are ever increasingly seeking discounting and sales throughout the year are not just confined to these two periods, which have now become a mainstay of the retail landscape in Ireland.” The report also reflects the impact which Brexit-related concerns have had on retail sales, with nervousness apparent throughout the year. “Since 2016, the issue of Brexit has been a constant concern for business and consumers alike,” Burke explained. “The recent extension of planned exit of the United Kingdom from the EU to January 31, 2020, has given some respite to the retail sector as it prepares to enter the biggest shopping season of the year, but this is only a momentary one, as all eyes will once again be trained on the UK as the country goes to the polls on December 12. We now have the prospect of Brexit uncertainty continuing over the most important trading period of the year, Christmas.” In looking forward to the end of the year, Burke noted: “Irish consumers are increasingly discerning and will shop around for value for their money. While nervousness in relation to Brexit remains a challenge that we must overcome, on the whole consumers are willing to spend their money in the domestic economy, albeit Retail Ireland Director, Thomas Burke. cautiously. That is not to say, however, that the sector does not face many challenges in 2020, but it is creating employment for over 300,000 people in Ireland and it is in relatively good health. This is largely in spite of the current economic and political atmosphere, not because of it.”

Key trends set out in the Retail Ireland Q3 2019 Monitor include: Convenience remains the bedrock of growth: The performance of supermarkets and convenience stores in Q3 has been strong. At the end of September, the change year-on-year was +4.6% in value and +5.3% in volume. This growth is not evenly spread, however, with convenience stores faring better than supermarkets, and within the supermarket sector, hard discounters have been doing better than traditional supermarkets. The gap between volume and value growth continues to narrow, but with volume continuing to lead value, there are no signs of inflation in food retailing yet. Home improvements remain the order of the day for the sector: Q3 was a quarter of mixed performance for DIY and hardware stores. July and August saw a continuation of the positive trend in the sector, built very much on the back of consumer confidence to undertake the small home improvement projects that are the mainstay of demand. Tools demand remained strong, with the decorative category performing at a trend level. September saw the situation alter with political developments in the UK, with a noticeable change in sentiment seeing consumers rein in their commitment to spend until the situation becomes clearer. This is hopefully a short-term trend. Fashion and footwear on the rebound: After a soft second quarter, sales values and volumes in the fashion, footwear and textiles category got a much needed boost in Q3, with a modest rise at the start of the quarter due to an uptick of sales for back to school time, before levelling off at the end of the quarter. Again, it can be clearly seen in the data that seasonality and events are the major driver of sales in this space. As the Christmas period comes into view, this category will be hoping for a robust season to make up some ground.

Tel: 01-6051558 www.retailireland.ie Need more? For more information about what we do and how your retail business can benefit from our unique services and supports, please visit us at www.retailireland.ie.


Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie|19

Certified Fishmonger Qualification

Official fishmonger certificate launches in 2020 Ireland’s first certified fishmonger qualification begins in early 2020. IRELAND’S first accredited fishmonger qualification will start in January 2020. The new programme, Certificate in Fishmonger Skills, is being led by Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), Ireland’s Seafood Development Agency, and is accredited by Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI). To date, participants accepted on the programme comprise a mix of independent fishmongers and seafood specialists from the multiple retail sector. Ian Mannix, Head of Skills Unit, BIM, described how the aim of the training is to retain and attract talent into the industry: “Today’s consumer has come to expect their fishmonger to have a broad knowledge of seafood. They want them to be able to advise them when they are at the counter. This new programme will provide solid, fully certified training to anyone working in seafood retailing; practical skills they can then apply in the industry. Moreover, improved skills in the workplace will ultimately lead to better sales and better retention of staff.” Building professionalism The new training combines practical and classroom learning and includes modules on seafood labelling, nutrition and food safety. The programme also includes hands-on demonstrations in fish filleting and culinary skills and is aimed at existing staff in seafood retailing or those interested in pursuing a career in the industry. Master fishmonger Hal Dawson is one of the trainers on the new programme. “The new course will build professionalism within the industry. Having this qualification on your CV,

will give fishmongers a real advantage,” noted Hal, who has worked in the seafood industry since 1972. Seafood retail sales rose by 2% in 2018 according to the BIM Business of Seafood report. Sales of loose fish experienced the sharpest increase (+8%), in comparison to pre-packed (+1%). Salmon remains the number one fish species bought by consumers in Ireland. However, there has been a marked increase in demand for lesser known species, owing to higher awareness of sustainability and provenance. Sharing the passion for seafood Laura Desmond, National Sales Manager, Oceanpath, completed the

pilot fishmonger skills programme in 2018. She spoke of how the training has given her more experience in grading fish quality and food safety: “I started out in sales and engineering and made a switch to the fish business in 2010. I now manage Reid’s Fish Market, owned by Oceanpath. I love the freedom of my job. I’m in my car and get to share my passion and knowledge of seafood to fishmongers working in the different stores. I can go into any of our stores now and ensure we’re selling the best quality fish. “ The Certificate in Fishmonger Skills is taking place in Dublin and Cork early in 2020. To find out more or to request an application form, please email seafoodskills@bim.ie or visit www.bim.ie.

Pictured are (l-r): Hal Dawson, Master Fishmonger and one of the trainers on the new Certified Fishmonger Qualification Programme, with Laura Desmond, National Sales Manager, Oceanpath, Dublin.


20|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

IGBF Christmas Lunch

Festive fun at IGBF lunch The Irish Grocers Benevolent Fund annual Christmas lunch was one of the social events of the year, raising valuable funds for the most worthy of causes. OVER 1,200 people from Ireland’s grocery industry gathered at the Clayton Burlington Hotel for the 2019 Irish Grocers Benevolent Fund Christmas Lunch, held on Friday, December 6, to raise funds for the industry charity. Now in its 56th year, this luncheon event, the biggest in the IGBF social calendar, again officially marks the countdown to Christmas for the trade and brings together suppliers, retailers and support companies to raise valuable funds. Organised by Hotel Solutions DMC, and hosted by comedian Jason Byrne, this year’s event saw entertainment by the Brass Monkeys and Digital Fire performers. Kindly sponsored by the National Lottery and PRM, the annual event continues to be the biggest single fundraiser for the IGBF, thanks to the participation and support of the trade. A very worthwhile cause Kari Daniels, the outgoing IGBF President of Appeals and Chief Executive Officer at Tesco Ireland, thanked attendees and sponsors for their generosity. During her address to the audience, Daniels noted, “2019 has again been another amazing year for the IGBF, using a varied calendar of events, including the IGBF Sports Lunch, TWIG’s networking lunch, the Grocers Fun Run, Stocked Music and Food Festival and of course, our annual Christmas lunch, to name but a few, to bring our grocery community together and raise funds for a very worthwhile cause.” Daniels proudly announced that this year, these combined events have raised over €650,000. 2020 President of Appeals unveiled At the lunch Leonard Hegarty, Chairperson of the IGBF, announced

IGBF President of Appeals and CEO of Tesco Ireland, Kari Daniels, is pictured with the IGBF Committee at the Christmas lunch.

Pictured are the outgoing IGBF President of Appeals Kari Daniels, CEO of Tesco Ireland; Leonard Hegarty, IGBF Chairperson; and Frances Higgins, IGBF Vice-Chairperson.


Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie|21

IGBF Christmas Lunch the IGBF’s new President of Appeals for 2020, Sharon Buckley, Musgrave Group Commercial Director, and wished her well in her new role. Reflecting on his first year as Chairperson, Hegarty also noted, “It is only through the generous ongoing support of the trade and of our sponsors at key events throughout the year that we are able to provide financial relief to members of the industry and their families, who find themselves in need of assistance”. A tribute was paid to Billy Reilly, who passed away this year. Billy was one of the recipients of IGBF support who had bravely talked in 2018 about what it meant to live with a terminal illness and what the support of the IGBF had meant to him and his family at a difficult time in their lives. For further information on the IGBF and its activities for 2020, please visit www.igbf.ie.

The team from the National Lottery.

IGBF Chairperson Leonard Hegarty, with Vice Chair Frances Higgins, are pictured with IGBF founder, Tim Nolan.

Comedian Jason Byrne entertains the audience at the IGBF Christmas Lunch.

The Today’s Women in Grocery committee.

Pictured are Rosemary Garth, Communications and Corporate Affairs Director, Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard and DIGI Director; with Gareth Davis, Category Manager; and Eoin Smyth, Irish Distillers.

The PRM team are pictured enjoying the IGBF Christmas Lunch.

The team from Kantar, including Aisling Murphy, Seoin Talbot, Emer Healy, Julie Newman, Patrick Dolan, Charlotte White, Amy Richardson and Simone Kinch.


Souper Stars from Avonmore AVONMORE Soups have launched a brand new ‘Grab and Go’ range, a response to the growing demand for healthy, filling, simple lunchtime meal solutions. The ‘Grab and Go’ range is available in 300g tubs that can be popped straight in the microwave and eaten from the tub. The range includes three smooth flavours – Slow Cooked Chicken with Vegetables, Select Vegetables with Parsley, and Vine Tomato and

Italian Parmesan. Stock these soups in the front of stores’ fridges next to sandwiches and salads (RRP €1.99). Avonmore soups are in growth by +3.1% volume (AC Nielsen, TS, MAT, November 3, 2019) and have the highest brand awareness of the fresh soup category at 90% (Bord Bia Brand Health 2019). A sure reason to stock up on Avonmore Soups this winter!

A SOUP- ER! LUNCH 100% RECYCLABLE


Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie|23

Tetra Pak

Tetra Pak: committed to its environmental journey Nazanin Moradi, Tetra Pak’s sustainability expert, explains why the company’s long-standing commitment to limiting its environmental impact is more relevant now than ever. “A PACKAGE should save more than it costs”: this was the belief of Dr Ruben Rausing, the founder of Tetra Pak, the world’s leading food processing and packaging solutions company. His vision was to create a beverage carton package that would distribute food safely while only using a minimal amount of plastic. Even today, on average, over 70% of the material that makes up Tetra Pak cartons is paperboard – a plant-based and renewable material. Increasingly, we are also using renewable plant-based materials to replace the fossil-based plastics used in beverage cartons such as plant-based polymers produced from sugar cane.

Lower carbon footprint Research shows that beverage cartons have a lower carbon footprint than alternative packaging and harnessing more plant-based materials decreases the reliance on the earth’s finite natural resources (Source: IFEU metaanalysis: LCA studies on beverage cartons and alternative packaging). Furthermore, all our paperboard is sourced from Forest Stewardship Council™ (FSC™) certified forests and other controlled sources Nazanin Moradi, Tetra Pak sustainability expert. and we can now supply FSC-labelled packages equipment from anywhere in the world. even more While at the end of the lifecycle, energy cartons can be recycled and separated efficient. into paperboard pulp and plastic and We also aluminium material streams, which can have a longbe made into new products such as new term ambition packaging, soap dispensers, napkin that our entire holders and plant pots. packaging material Ongoing investment in environmental portfolio innovation will be But there’s no question that finding made from 100% renewable materials, solutions to sustainable challenges without compromising safety, quality or remains a journey for everyone involved in functionality. Creating this ideal package the industry. We’re committed to ongoing will require significant innovation and investment in environmental innovation development, and we are already working to make our processing and packaging hard to deliver it.


24|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

SuperValu Off Licence Awards

Top SuperValu off licences rewarded Four SuperValu stores have won top awards at the Edward Dillon & Santa Rita Estates SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards.

Trisha Feely, Export Sales Manager, Santa Rita Europe, is pictured with Overall Store of the Year Winners Liam Ryan, Lillian Twomey and Ross Helan of Ryan’s SuperValu, Glanmire, Co. Cork, along with Andy O’Hara, CEO, Edward Dillon; and Kevin O’Callaghan, Trading Manager, Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland, at the Edward Dillon & Santa Rita Estates SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards. THURSDAY, November 28, saw the annual Edward Dillon & Santa Rita Estates SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards taking place at The Talbot Hotel, Dublin, with four SuperValu stores winning the top awards on the night. The winners were selected from over 220 SuperValu stores across Ireland, from which 25 finalists came through the judging process. All 25 finalist stores attended on the night and the winners were: •

Overall Winner SuperValu Off Licence of the Year: Ryan’s SuperValu Glanmire, Co. Cork.

Munster Store of the Year: Hurley’s SuperValu Midleton, Co. Cork.

Leinster Store of the Year: Moriarty’s SuperValu Balbriggan, Co. Dublin.

Connacht/Ulster Store of the Year: O’Gorman’s SuperValu Carrickmacross, Co. Monaghan.

Guests on the night enjoyed a cocktail reception, tasting some of Edward Dillon’s best loved brands, including Hennessy and Bombay Sapphire Gin. Hosted by RTE’s Shay Byrne, with

entertainment from top Irish comedian and actress Deirdre O’Kane, guests had an evening of laughter and delicious food, paired with Santa Rita wines. This year’s Edward Dillon & Santa Rita Estates SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Award winners receive an exclusive trip to Argentina, visiting Mendoza and the Dona Paula vineyards and exploring the sights of Buenos Aires. Liam Ryan, Lillian Twomey and Ross Helan were there on the night to represent SuperValu Glanmire and were presented with the Overall Off Licence of the Year Award. Tommie Grimes, Denis O’Brien and


Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie|25

SuperValu Off Licence Awards Garret Boyle were there on the night to represent SuperValu Midleton and were presented with the Munster Off Licence of the Year Award. Luke Moriarty, Sinead Brogan, Brian Carrick and Bobby Heade were there on the night to represent SuperValu Balbriggan and were presented with the Leinster Off Licence of the Year Award. Vanessa Morris and Ralph Johnson were there on the night to represent SuperValu Carrickmacross and were presented with the Connacht/ Ulster Off Licence of the Year Award. Each of the winners were presented with their award by Andy O’Hara, CEO, Edward Dillon and Trisha Feely, Export Sales Manager, Santa Rita Europe. All the finalists were judged by Rodney Trenwith and were marked on a range of criteria, including overall appearance, innovation and customer service. “Every year the standard of stores exceeds and surpasses the year previous,” noted Andy O’Hara, CEO of Edward Dillon. “It’s brilliant to see the passion that each store has to achieve excellence. We would like to thank and congratulate all the four winning stores, and also to each of the finalist stores.”

Tommie Grimes, Denis O’Brien and Garret Boyle of Hurley’s SuperValu, Midleton, Co. Cork, are pictured accepting the Munster Store of the Year Award from Trisha Feely, Export Sales Manager, Santa Rita Europe, and Andy O’Hara, CEO, Edward Dillon, at the Edward Dillon & Santa Rita Estates SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards.

Trisha Feely, Export Sales Manager, Santa Rita Europe, and Andy O’Hara, CEO, Edward Dillon (right), are pictured with Luke Moriarty, Bobby Heade, Sinead Brogan and Brian Carrick of Moriarty’s SuperValu Balbriggan, Dublin, Winner of the Leinster Store of the Year Award at the Edward Dillon & Santa Rita Estates SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards.

Ralph Johnson and Vanessa Morris of O’Gorman’s SuperValu Carrickmacross, Monaghan, Winner of the Connacht/ Ulster Store of the Year Award, are pictured with Trisha Feely, Export Sales Manager, Santa Rita Europe (left) and Andy O’Hara, CEO, Edward Dillon (right), at the Edward Dillon & Santa Rita Estates SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards.


26|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Drinks News Coca-Cola Signature Mixers Beaujolais Nouveau 2019 arrives in Ireland available to bring home SUMMER 2019 saw the launch of Coca-Cola Signature Mixers, created by some of the world’s most influential and inventive bartenders to perfectly pair, enhance and elevate dark spirits and premium vodka. This Christmas, Coca Cola Signature Mixers are not only available in leading bars and restaurants across Ireland, but also in Dunnes Stores, Tesco and SuperValu. Consumers can serve their favourite spirit with a twist at home, as each Coca Cola Signature Mixers pack includes one of each Signature Mixer flavour in a 200ml bottle: Smoky Notes, Spicy Notes, Herbal Notes and Woody Notes.

BEAUJOLAIS Nouveau enthusiasts around the world, including Ireland, enjoyed their first sip of this vin de primeur on November 21, 2019, to celebrate the arrival of the new vintage. As distributor for Georges Duboeuf in Ireland, Febvre took its first delivery of Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau just in time to have it delivered to off-licences and restaurants around Ireland; in line with French law, Beaujolais Nouveau cannot be released for sale until the third Thursday in November each year. Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau 2019 is now available nationwide through independent off-licences, with an RRP of €12.99.

Fanta turns to the dark side

Roe & Co Distillery hosts Christmas craft fairs ROE & Co hosted another Roe & Collective workshop series during December, with whiskey tasting, wreath creation, grazing board assembly and sustainable fashion workshops. The brand brought some of Ireland’s most impressive creatives together at its distillery, in the heart of Dublin’s Liberties, to celebrate craft, partnering with Sustainable Fashion Dublin, The Garden at Powerscourt Town House, and BlackSheep Foods.

KINETIC recently joined forces with Fanta to develop and deliver a Halloween themed OOH (Out of Home) advertising campaign. To mark Fanta’s transition to the ‘darker side’, Kinetic effectively utilised its in-house capabilities to promote the terrifyingly twisted limited edition Fanta Dark Orange through a number of bespoke light projections at various locations in Dublin, including St Stephen’s Green Shopping Centre, Amiens Street, Dame Street and Grafton Street. Working alongside media agency Mediacom Ireland, and creative Hogarth, the Halloween-inspired creative projection gave the classic drink an eerie makeover. The blood orange drink promised to ‘tantalise taste buds’ to terrified passers-by.

International Poitín Day MONDAY, November 18 was International Poitín Day and new innovations, influenced by the original Irish spirit, which is shrouded in a long history of mystery, are poised to make a splash in the coming years. Banned from 1661 to 1997, poitín is an ancient farm-based spirit, first made by monks in the 6th century. With the advent of the craft distillery revolution in Ireland, innovation has resulted in producers creating revolutionary new poitín products, inspired by the rebellious spirit that kept the product alive during its days of illegality. Vincent McGovern, Head of Drinks Ireland – Spirits, said, “Poitín is emerging from the shadows, with a brighter future in which it will be further recognised as one of Ireland’s iconic drinks, with quality brands made by forward-looking distilleries.”


TOP 50 CENTRA STORES CELEBRATED AT THE DIAGEO SPONSORED CENTRA OFF-LICENCE EXCELLENCE AWARDS 2019 Colin Kenny, Diageo Channel Controller commented, “Diageo would like to acknowledge all the efforts of the participating retailers. This is a fine example of how such an initiative can inspire store operators to raise standards which, ultimately, adds to the bottom line. As one of the biggest retailers in the convenience channel in Ireland, commanding a 15% share of the Total Beer & Spirits market and is a key partner for Diageo. For our part, we have demonstrated our commitment to our partnership by extending our Field Sales coverage in Centra by 77% to over 320 stores this year. Diageo recognises that consumer habits are constantly evolving and our brewers are always on a journey of product innovation to offer choice.” (L to R) Colin Kenny (Diageo), Kevin Foley (Centra Foynes, Co. Limerick), Martin Kelleher (Musgraves)

The Guinness Storehouse, the home of Guinness, hosted Centra’s top 50 finalists for the Diageo sponsored Centra Off-licence excellence awards, a black Tie Gala event which took place 21st November 2019. The awards represent the commitment of the partnership between Diageo and Centra to develop Centra Off-Licences by promoting and rewarding standards of distinction. While there are many new challenges facing off-license retailers such as the arrival of structural separation and minimum unit pricing, it was acknowledged by all attendees that (L to R) Colin Kenny (Diageo) Ewelina Prochniak, Edwina Donnellan, Marlena Morasiewicz, Joan these awards are inspiring Centra retailers across Ireland to raise the bar, Donnellan (Centra Loughville, Co. Clare), Martin Kelleher (Musgraves) with host Hector Ó hEochagáin focusing on delivering innovation and premium choices to its consumers. Hosted by the ever-popular Hector Ó hEochagáin, the main winners were ‘Most Improved Store’, which went to Deegan’s Centra Urlingford, Co. Kilkenny, the ‘High Convenience Winner’ was Ryan’s Centra O’Connell St, Dublin, the ‘Convenience Winner’ was Reidy’s Centra, Foynes, while ‘Neighbourhood Winner’ went to Hickson’s Centra Piltown. The ‘Overall Centra Off-Licence Excellence Award’ went to Donnellan’s Centra, Loughville, Co. Clare. Each of the winners were presented with their awards by Colin Kenny, Diageo Channel Controller and Martin Kelleher Managing Director at Musgrave Retail Partners Ireland. As well as being recognised on the night, the winners of the Centra Off-Licence Excellence Awards sponsored by Diageo were also presented with a prize of an exclusive trip to Diageo’s finest distilleries in Scotland. The attendees (L to R) Colin Kenny (Diageo), Connie Lynch, Donal Hickson, Sharon Power (Centra Piltown, Co. enjoyed the remainder of the night on the seventh floor, which houses Kilkenny), Martin Kelleher (Musgrave) the Gravity bar overlooking Dublin city. 310 stores participated in the competition, now in Diageo’s second year, with the judging mechanic helping them to identify opportunities, Rory McHugh, Diageo Senior National Account Manager, acknowledged demonstrate quality on offer and unlock sales opportunities in what is the enthusiasm at the event among retailers, “Judging by the increase both a challenging and progressive part of the Irish Retail sector. The in overall scores and the increase in participating stores, there seems awards have gone from strength to strength with entries up by 110 stores to be a great sense of ambition to constantly push the boundaries. As a versus 2018 and average store scores improving by 5% year on year. result of being focused on reaching such high standards, and despite big competition, Centra has delivered a brilliant year and are growing ahead of the market and we commend you on that.”


28|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Drinks News Carlsberg 0.0 launches in Ireland CARLSBERG 0.0 has now launched in Ireland. Carlsberg 0.0 is a refreshing, great tasting Danish Pilsner with zero alcohol, zero sugar and 46 calories per bottle. The new nonalcoholic beer is inspired by the Danish values of balance, socialisation and zero compromise on taste or quality. With a refreshing malty, caramel body and a crisp pilsner-style bitterness, Carlsberg 0.0 offers all the flavour of Carlsberg Pilsner but with zero alcohol, The Danish Way. “The Irish and the Danes share similar values, and with an upward trend in Ireland of consumers seeking more balanced drinking choices, we’re confident that this new beer will go down incredibly well,” noted Carlsberg Brand Manager, Hannah Todd. The launch of Carlsberg 0.0 will be supported by an extensive multimedia campaign across Digital, OOH, PR, Sampling and Experiential throughout the Island of Ireland. Carlsberg 0.0 is initially available in 330ml bottles, with 330ml cans hitting fridges from February.

Rye River launches limited edition Cognac barrel aged beer

FOLLOWING on from their success at the World Beer Awards 2019, Irish craft beer brewery Rye River Brewing Company has created a new limited-edition seasonal brew entitled Garnet. Described by head brewer, Bill Laukitis as “a one of a kind beer created with a great deal of love and care”, Garnet is an exceptional Cognac Barrel Aged Imperial Brown Ale and has a 10-year shelf life. With an abv of 9.5%, Garnet is available in selected independent off licences nationally priced at €14.99 for the 750ml bottle, with special limited edition gift boxed versions available for €19.99. There are only 2080 bottles of this limited, premium small batch release. Garnet is available through Fourcorners craft beer distributors.

Poacher’s: the perfect match for Christmas

POACHER’S Premium Irish mixers have a menu of festive drinks, encouraging your consumers to mix it up this Christmas. Irish owned and produced in Wexford, Poacher’s mixers are made with Irish spring water and natural ingredients and come in four varieties: Classic Tonic with hand-picked Irish thyme; Wild Tonic with hand foraged Elderflower from County Wicklow; Citrus Tonic with orange and Irish rosemary; and the new Poachers Light tonic, with only 14 calories per bottle. The Irish company also produces a dry style Ginger Ale, made with natural ginger and organic apples from Highbank Orchard in County Kilkenny, and a revitalising Irish Soda Water. For more information, see www.poachersdrinks.com.

Coca-Cola introduces innovative packaging technology COCA-COLA and its strategic bottling partners, Coca-Cola HBC and Coca-Cola European Partners, has begun rolling out the KeelClip, an innovative, minimalist paperboard packaging solution, on its multipack cans across Europe, with Ireland being one of the first countries to go live. This move underscores the Coca-Cola system’s commitment to reduce the use of plastic by using solutions that are more sustainable in terms of recyclability and overall environmental footprint as it works towards its global goals for a World Without Waste. As part of this initiative, Coca-Cola HBC will remove shrink wrap from all of its can multipacks in all European Union markets by the end of 2021. In total, Coca-Cola HBC will invest €15m in KeelClip and will begin the roll-out in Ireland and Poland early next year.

Schweppes gets creative for Christmas SCHWEPPES fizzed into the festive season with the Schweppes Ultimate Mixer Studio, a pop-up creative space that opened its doors in the heart of Dublin city centre from December 5-7. Located at 20 Dawson Street, the studio hosted some of Ireland’s leading creatives, mixologists and music makers for a long weekend of entertainment, art and inspiration. Guests at the studio enjoyed Schweppes cocktails, live screen printing with Jill & Gill, and music from Tara Stewart, Stephen Byrne, January Russell Winters, and Gordon Johnson, while artist Signs of Power hand-painted a colourful mural in the space.


have you seen what we’ve been up to?

TO SEE HOW WE CAN HELP YOU AND YOUR BUSINESS GROW... join us Contact: ColinDonnelly,SPARSALESDIRECTOR: 0863803924 EMAIL: cdonnelly@bwg.ie OR SARAHCONROY: 01-4090362 EMAIL:sconroy@bwg.ie


30|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Bakery

Irish bakery market proves its worth

A new report into the Irish bakery sector reveals the factors that would make consumers buy more bakery products, helping retailers to target key customer groups. Aaron Dodd reports. DÉLIFRANCE has released ‘Prove It: The Great Irish Bakery Report’, a comprehensive overview of the bakery market in the Republic of Ireland in 2019. The market report is made up of original consumer research, along with market data, and highlights key consumer demands and areas of growth. The report focuses on the industry’s key categories of bread, viennoiserie, patisserie and savoury, and focuses on specific consumer behaviours and preferences, as well as the drivers, challenges and trends shaping these categories. The main takeaways from the report are that 50% of consumers have changed the types of bread they buy, opting for wellnessfocused wholegrain/wholemeal seeded options; 81% of consumers are eating freshly baked pastries regularly; cakes (68%) and muffins (63%) are consumers’ favourite patisserie products; and 44% of consumers eat savoury pastries at least once a week. Délifrance has also highlighted

several wider trends in the industry. Consumers are more focused on wellbeing, health and nutrition than ever before. There is a multigenerational shift towards nutritional bakes, with 25-34-year-olds most conscious about nutrition and wellbeing. Consumers are calling for a reduction in salt, sugar, fat and calories across all products, as well as demanding more flavours and more vegan options, especially in viennoiserie and savoury products. Bread: back to basics Bread has seen a return to basics; rustic hand-crafted bakes and wholesome customer experiences around provenance and freshness are capturing consumers’ attention. The wellness economy in Ireland is worth €2 billion a year, expected to rise to €2.3 billion by 2020, and bread is taking a slice of the action. There are endless possibilities for wellness inclusion loaves, such as seeds, nuts, grains, alternative flours, vegetables and fruits. Bread continues to be a staple of

‘Prove It: The Great Irish Bakery Report’ by Délifrance.


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Bakery consumers would like to see healthier options and 20% of 25-34-year-olds are interested in vegan savoury options.

Bread has seen a return to basics, with rustic hand-crafted bakes proving hugely popular. the Irish diet, with 45% of the population eating bread products daily. Lunchtime is the most popular time of the day, with 69% of Irish consumers eating bread products for lunch. Délifrance found that consumers would eat more bread if there were more flavours, healthier options and alternative flours and grains. The biggest consideration when buying bread is freshness, with 70% of consumers agreeing this is the most important factor. The majority of people still buy their bread products in supermarkets (87%), while 30% of people purchase from artisan bakeries (30%) and 18% from independent coffee shops. Viennoiserie: this means everything to me Pastries and croissants are no longer just for breakfast; hybrids such as cruffins, cronuts and crolls are changing the eating habits of consumers, and we are now seeing these exciting new products eaten throughout the day. There has also been a big push for vegan viennoisserie, as consumers are looking for plant-based fats to replace traditional butter and cream. The top three considerations for consumers when buying a pastry are freshness, flavour and price. Supermarkets are still the most popular place to buy pastries and the most popular pastry is the croissant. More than a fifth of people enjoy pastries as their mid-morning snack and the majority eat their pastries at home (70%). Pastries are very popular with 25-34-year-olds, many using the pastry as a quick breakfast on the go, while almost half of Irish consumers are more likely to buy a pastry with a hot drink.

Patisserie: the sweet success From themed afternoon teas to cupcake towers and every flavour doughnut imaginable, patisserie and sweet treats are the most flamboyant and colourful baked goods. But health is impacting on this diverse category too, with 49% of consumers saying they would buy more patisserie if healthier options were available, particularly important to the 25-44 age bracket. On-trend natural sugar alternatives are making their mark, with consumers opting for flavours such as beetroot, honey and coconut oil, to name a few. Although consumers love new twists and creations, tradition still dominates patisserie, with 40% of consumers preferring France to be the place of origin for their sweet treat. Keeping with the theme of tradition, chocolate is the most popular flavour. But one in three consumers admit they would buy more patisserie products if there was a larger range of flavours, such as vanilla, custard, caramel and coffee. Savoury: a thriving sector The Irish food to go market is thriving, 72% of people regularly buy food and drink on the go. The ham and cheesefilled jambon is a national treasure; in 2018, Délifrance sold six million jambons in Ireland alone. Savoury pastries are a popular choice amongst consumers, with 44% of consumers eating a savoury pastry once a week, usually at lunchtime. The top factors which influence consumer purchasing behaviour are freshness, taste and price. While the ham and cheese jambon remains the public’s favourite, 48% of

The future Délifrance anticipates a continued focus on health, wellness and veganism going forward. It will be important for suppliers and manufacturers to keep up with these trends and develop products which meet the needs of the health-conscious consumer. To showcase the best of Irish baked goods, Délifrance organised a tour of Dublin bakeries and cafes who have embraced the latest trends, from the traditional Bewley’s Café and the Parisian style Ladurée, to plant-based café Veginity and the very modern Eathos. It is an exciting time in Ireland for the baking industry. The call from consumers for new flavours and more options means producers must focus on creativity and innovation to ensure they stay up to speed with the latest trends and meet consumers demands.

The croissant remains Ireland’s most popular pastry. “The Irish bakery market is currently worth €1.1 billion, growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 1.9% year-on-year, presenting a significant opportunity to smart operators,” explained Stéphanie Brillouet, Marketing Director for Northern Europe & North America, Délifrance. “Our new insight has defined general consumer trends, as well as the unique behaviours and demands of different demographics. We’ve also listened to what’s dominating online conversations and revealed the factors that would make consumers buy more bakery products. This is excellent information for operators to capitalise on, to maximise their offer and target their key customer groups most effectively.”


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Flahavan’s

‘Stay Unflappable’ with Flahavan’s Flahavan’s provides tips on how to Stay Unflappable while Christmas shopping, to celebrate the launch of two new flavours in its Flapjacks range. FLAHAVAN’S has gotten a flavour of the top things that get Irish shoppers in a flap in the run-up to Christmas. The survey of over 1,000 adults across the country revealed that Irish shoppers are most likely to feel stressed over long queues (46%), trying to park (43%) and the increase in traffic over the Christmas period (41%). Stay unflappable The ‘Stay Unflappable’ survey, conducted to celebrate the launch of Flahavan’s new Lemon & Poppyseed and Dark Chocolate & Orange Flapjacks, revealed that savvy Christmas shoppers work hard to stay unflappable, with four in 10 trying to get their shopping done early and three in 10 writing shopping lists (and trying to stick to them). Flahavan’s Flapjacks, the perfect on-the-go snack, are available in seven wholesome flavours, including Original, Choc Chip, Cranberry & Orange, Fruit

Flahavan’s new Lemon & Poppyseed and Dark Chocolate & Orange Flapjacks.

& Nut and Multi-Seed and now in delicious Lemon & Poppyseed and Dark Chocolate & Orange. Individually wrapped for freshness, you can pop one in your bag, keep them at the ready in the car or on your desk at work, to enjoy when you need a boost! Planning ahead Speaking about the survey, Suzanne Walsh, Brand Manager for Flahavan’s, said: “Christmas can be a busy and stressful time of year and it’s clear from our survey results that Irish shoppers are adopting clever tactics to stay calm under the pressure. One of our top tips is to plan ahead and keep your energy levels up by popping a Flahavan’s Oaty Flapjack in your handbag or car – the best way to stay unflappable throughout the festive shopping season.” Flahavan’s festive themed survey also found that women are most likely to get in ahead of the Christmas rush by starting to shop for presents in October or even earlier (43%). Unsurprisingly, 72% of 25-44 year olds try to avoid the crowds altogether by buying most of their gifts online. Other top shopper strategies include wearing comfortable shoes (24%), treating yourself at the end of the shopping trip (15%) and taking regular coffee breaks (12%). Despite the stress, Irish shoppers have not lost sight of the joy of Christmas preparations; 28% revealed that their favourite thing about Christmas shopping

is the atmosphere, while 20% enjoy the sense of satisfaction when it’s all done. 17% of Irish shoppers identify finding that perfect gift for a loved one as the thing that gets them most excited about Christmas shopping.

Flahavan’s Flapjacks are now available in seven wholesome flavours.


34|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Frozen Pizza

Grab a pizza the action!

Pizzas are perfect for home entertaining, as consumers treat themselves to a tasty and ultra-convenient treat. With a host of big TV moments on the way, stocking the biggest pizza brands makes perfect sense. IRISH consumers love pizza: that’s no surprise. Sales of takeaway pizza grew exponentially over the last decade, even during the recession, and consumers love recreating their favourite pizza tastes at home, with the major manufacturers introducing a host of new flavours to tempt consumers. The growth of vegetarianism, veganism and the rise of the ‘flexitarian’ has impacted on the pizza market, with some of the biggest producers in the country introducing vegetarian and vegan variants, as well as pizzas suitable for those with special dietary requirement, such as gluten free options. Pizzas are perfect for entertaining at home, from festive get-togethers to summer barbecues, and indeed they now form a major part of consumers’ big nights in, whether it’s popular TV moments, from talent shows to the latest blockbuster drama series. With 2020 bringing high profile sporting events, including the Euro 2020 football championship, the Olympic Games and the Ryder Cup, the coming year should prove a bumper one for pizza sales in Ireland.

Chicago Town Chicago Town Pizza underwent a significant relaunch in 2019, creating a Masterbrand campaign to celebrate their Chicago-inspired roots, unique bases and their gooey messy goodness. The objective was to unify four strong sub brands already in the market: Chicago Town Takeaway, Pizza Kitchen Tiger Crust, Thin One and Deep Dish. The fully integrated campaign went live in September 2019 and incorporated a packaging refresh, TV, Out of Home (OOH), Social Media, programmatic and shopper marketing. The new packaging helped unify the brand; previously each Chicago Town sub-brand had very distinct packaging. The new packaging now communicates a stronger unified master brand, with the logo given significantly more prominence, followed by the crust type and then the flavour. The photography was also refreshed to help communicate the indulgence of the Chicago Town range of products. “We wanted to bring to life our new positioning,” explains Eoin Mullen, Senior Brand Manager, Chicago Town. “The first step was through the packaging; this

The hugely popular Chicago Town Classic Crust Takeaway pizza. was key in creating a strong Masterbrand visual identity, uniting our sub-brands and encouraging range discovery instore.” The above-the-line campaign incorporated significant TV investment throughout the month of September, creating mass awareness of the brand relaunch. This was supported by VOD and an OOH campaign with six-sheet


Frozen Pizza

WELCOME TO TO WELCOME

PIZZA

HEAVEN WELCOME MY FRIENDTO


36|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Frozen Pizza

The Chicago Town Takeaway Stuffed Crust pizza is hugely popular with Irish consumers. advertising and a number of high impact OOH formats, including Connolly digital gallery, Ballsbridge Digipole and Transvision screens (Connolly, Heuston and Busaras). Social media was a key channel for the campaign and has allowed the brand to remain ‘always on’ since the initial launch activity kicked off. The brand also activated a partnership with Lovin Dublin, which incorporated hosting a ‘Pizza and Movie Night’ at the Sugar Club. At the event, consumers enjoyed a classic Chicago movie, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, while being treated to the full range of Chicago Town Pizzas and Chicagoinspired cocktails/mocktails, with one lucky guest winning a trip to Chicago. Finally, a shopper marketing campaign was activated throughout September and October; this included six-sheet and digital purchase points in close proximity to the brand’s retail

menu, including a Takeaway pizza for all the family to share, with a more recent addition to the range in Takeaway Thin & Crispy, for those looking for a thinner sharing base. The everyday Thin range still provides families Deep Dish, one of the tempting offers from Chicago Town. of all ages with a selection of toppings, from customers. In-store, the POS was Pepperoni to Roast Chicken, while the implemented to communicate the reDeep Pan range has just relaunched with launch at the key buying moment in the an even lighter fluffier base and new frozen aisle. The POS included freezer wraps, aisle fins and floor graphics. The brand has responded incredibly well to the Masterbrand activity, in the latest 12 weeks, the brand has grown by +29%, and in the latest eight weeks by +32% (Source: Nielsen ScanTrack: November 3, 2019). There are some distribution opportunities for the brand in 2020 and listing the core range in all stores will help contribute to retailers’ success in 2020. Goodfella’s Pizza Goodfella’s Pizza, launched in 1993, remains Ireland’s number one frozen pizza brand. Produced in state-of-theart facilities in Naas and Longford, Goodfella’s is proud to be made in Ireland and supporting Irish jobs.

Goodfella’s Classic Crust Takeaway pizza is perfect for all the family to share.

Pizza Kitchen Tiger Crust from Chicago Town, tastes just like Tiger bread.

Team Goodfella’s is constantly striving to meet consumer needs and wants. Tapping into key trends and meal occasions, Goodfella’s has something for everyone and continues to deliver tasty pizzas for all the family. The brand has the widest frozen pizza

Goodfella’s Vegan Falafel pizza offers in-store stand-out and really delivers on quality. more relevant toppings which tap into younger audiences and their preferences: Goodfella’s Cheesy Beef (delivering a “burger” flavour sensation), Meat Feast (a mix of pepperoni, ham and salami for all those meat lovers) and Spicy Chicken Sizzler (for those who like a spicy kick to their pizza). Given the now mainstream nature of vegan products, as well as those with special dietary requirements, Goodfella’s felt it important to create ranges of both Vegan (Falafel and Spicy Vegetable Salsa) and Gluten Free (Margherita and Pepperoni, Mushroom and Ham) that offer stand-out and deliver on quality. Whatever the occasion, whoever you’re with, you can depend on Goodfella’s delicious Italian American style pizzas from the original frozen pizza people: Goodfella’s, Made with Respect! Follow Goodfella’s Ireland on Facebook or visit their website on www.goodfellaspizzas.com for more information.


38|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Recruitment

Possibly the best money you will spend… MORE and more companies are approaching recruitment agencies, having spent a disproportionate amount of time trying to recruit for a vacant role themselves. In reality, it has been proven to be more cost effective to bring in a recruitment partner at the start of the process. With the average time spent by a company being in the region of six to eight weeks before deciding to call upon a recruitment specialist, the whole process gets elongated and costly, especially when weighed up against the cost of having a key role left vacant for an extended period of time. The team at Crossell Recruitment (www.crossellrecruitment.ie) are focused on finding that perfect fit, whether it’s the right job or the right candidate. Being a small agency works to their clients’ advantage, with the team having met

all the candidates prior to being put forward. This gives them an understanding of the candidates’ aspirations and how they will align with a company’s requirements and culture. Matching candidate to employer When you work with the team at Crossell either as a client or a candidate, they take the opportunity to get to know you, your needs, your likes and dislikes. They are not in the business of submitting CVs just to make up the numbers. Their goal is to match a candidate with the right employer, creating a successful longterm partnership for both. Crossell have recruited for some of the biggest household names, including Kellogg’s, Birds Eye and JTI. They don’t

settle for second best. This makes them the natural choice for a client’s recruitment needs. So before wasting a lot of time and hidden expense, give either Keelin or Rob a call on (01) 4603890. Remember: it does not cost you anything, unless they find the right hire for your business.


Retail News Ireland’s Longest Established Grocery Magazine

RETAIL GROUPS REPORT


40|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Retail Groups Report

A strong year for Spar Colin Donnelly, Spar Sales Director, reflects on a super 2019, which saw the Spar group lift a host of awards, both nationally and internationally, including a prestigious award at the International IGD Awards for Spar Merrion Row. How did Spar perform in 2019? Spar is showing very strong overall sales performance for 2019 against the backdrop of a market that is heavily dependent on price promotions and beginning to see a dip in consumer confidence. In 2019, Spar solidified its place in the market as the leading convenience retail group, established for over 55 years, affording the Irish shopper the most innovative, award winning in-store offering and shopping experience. Spar retailers celebrated a wide array of national industry accolades, as well as National Q-Mark Awards and we’re particularly proud of our most recent win for Spar Merrion Row, who took home the Small Store of the Year Award at the prestigious International IGD Awards in London, ahead of international competition from Northern Ireland, Great Britain, Denmark, Belgium and China. This award was a real endorsement of the recent strategy work carried out by the brand, as well as the retail development design response that is currently rolling out across stores in the Spar estate. How do you go about attracting new retailers to join the group? Spar remains a top class symbol for retailers through its portfolio of exclusive offerings, including Spar Deli and coffee

partnerships with Insomnia, Seattle’s Best and Bewley’s. Spar is a leader in retail foodservice, strengthened by numerous food concepts such as ‘6 Av Street Food’, ‘Shakers’, ‘I Scream’ and ‘Pazza Pizza’. Spar continues to focus on supporting local Irish suppliers, providing them the opportunity to reach thousands of customers every day. What does your group offer that others don’t? A key strength for the Spar brand is the partnership with independent entrepreneurs who share the same ethos

Fact File: Spar Name of Group: Spar Head Office: BWG House, Greenhills Road, Tallaght, Dublin 24, D24 Y722 Wholesale Partner: BWG Foods Type of distribution network: BWG National Distribution Centre (NDC) servicing fresh, ambient and alcohol to stores nationwide Number of Stores nationwide: Over 400 Colours: Red, white and green Tagline: “Under the tree at Spar” Average Store Size: 200 square metres

Colin Donnelly, Spar Sales Director. and values. While convenience is the foundation on which the Spar brand is built, the offering is constantly evolving to meet the changing needs of consumers. Today, Spar focuses on the new customer, offering great, appropriate time of day fresh foods, healthy options, expansive range and price and value, all key factors in the Spar offer. The focus on health and wellbeing through the Spar Better Choices campaign is continuing to deliver sales in key categories by offering consumers more choice. We also, through BWG Foods, launched the BWG Academy, which is designed to provide a wide range of selfdevelopment and support programmes that will afford all Spar retailers and their employees with the opportunity to develop new skills that will support the pursuit of long-term and rewarding careers in the retail sector. What advantages do your retail partners enjoy? Being part of Spar International, Spar retailers have unique access to some of


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Retail Groups Report marketing front, continuing to co-invest with our retailers in promoting the brand through a number of high profile sponsorships and activities. Spar launched two new advertising campaigns in 2019, introducing Spar Red Value in April as a new value 2019 saw the successful roll-out of our award-winning campaign across store design across the Spar estate. TV, radio, digital, social and in-store. the best practice in retail from around the July 2019 saw the launch of Spar Always Changing, an exciting new advertising world. In return, Spar Ireland is a leading and social media campaign, which takes light on a world stage, responsible further ownership of the iconic fir tree for pioneering some of the latest and and strapline, ‘Under the tree at Spar’. greatest thinking in convenience, with 2019 marked the 5th year of Spar’s new store designs and food solutions. sponsorship of the FAI Primary School 5s Programme, which has continued to How many new stores joined your group grow over the past five years, with 37,448 in 2019? children taking part, making up 4,681 The number of stores in the group is over teams and representing 1,696 schools. 400 and growing, with 2019 being a really This is a growth of 96% in the five years successful year for both new and existing that Spar has been sponsoring what is stores adopting and upgrading to the new now the biggest grassroots programme store design for the Spar brand. in Ireland. Female participation was at an all-time high of 42% in 2019. What were the other highlights of 2019 2019 also saw Spar appointed as for the Spar group? Official Convenience Retail Partner One of the biggest wins in 2019 was the of Athletics Ireland. The partnership successful roll-out of our award-winning includes Spar’s support of The Daily Mile, store design across the Spar estate. Not an initiative in more than 800 primary only is this being seen in new stores within the group, but existing retailers are schools which sees children run or jog at their own pace, for 15 minutes every day, also investing in this modern, innovative making them fitter, healthier, and more and fresh store design. able to concentrate in the classroom. Spar has had a busy year on the

Pictured at the announcement that Spar is the Official Convenience Retail Partner of Athletics Ireland are Irish international athletes and Spar Ambassadors Rhasidat Adeleke and Mark English, along with Spar Sales Director, Colin Donnelly.

Spar Carrigstown continues to make an appearance on TV screens each week on the set of the nation’s favourite soap, Fair City, as part of the ongoing sponsorship. Spar continued its successful partnership with celebrity TV cook, Donal Skehan, as sponsor of Donal’s Super Food in Minutes on RTÉ, while launching an exciting viewer’s competition offering two lucky viewers the chance to win a trip to LA. How do you think the Irish grocery market changed in 2019? The uncertainty of Brexit lingered right through the year, which undermined consumer confidence across the Irish grocery market and spend was most certainly impacted as a result. However, we are seeing positive trends in terms of health and wellness.

Republic of Ireland Manager, Mick McCarthy, is pictured with Spar FAI Primary School 5s Ambassadors, Republic of Ireland international Megan Campbell and former Republic of Ireland international Keith Andrews, at the National Finals. What effects do you think Brexit will have on the market? Brexit is certain to impact on the retail industry, along with all other sectors of our economy, but it is impossible to gauge what those effects will be until the whole process is concluded and, crucially, the work of Brexit only actually begins when (if) the UK actually leaves the European Union. What plans do you have in place for 2020? On the back of strong retail sales performance in Spar for 2019, the team are continuing to implement Spar’s three-year strategy out to 2021 with confident growth plans for the next two years, with 2020 underpinned by a strong pipeline of new business. This continued growth is testament to the hardworking Spar retailers and strong business partnerships.


42|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Retail Groups Report

Eurospar celebrates 21st birthday Fact File: Eurospar

As Eurospar celebrated its 21st birthday in Ireland, Malachy Hanberry, Eurospar MD, reflects on a very positive year, the potential impact of Brexit and why there is nothing like peer-to-peer endorsements when it comes to attracting new retailers to the Eurospar group. THE first Eurospar supermarket opened 21 years ago and the network has expanded to 51 supermarkets nationwide today. Eurospar supermarkets and their retailers are at the heart of local communities around Ireland: family run businesses, committed to servicing the local neighbourhood. The Eurospar brand is owned by BWG Foods, a leading wholesale and retail company. Working in partnership with independent retailers, BWG ensures a profitable business model and a world-class supermarket offer, constantly innovating through product development, cutting-edge store design and service. Through its wide network of stores, BWG Foods supports local jobs, suppliers, producers and community groups. Malachy Hanberry, Managing Director, Eurospar, reveals the group’s achievements over the course of 2019.

How did Eurospar perform in 2019? Eurospar had a very positive year in a very competitive market. We placed a huge emphasis on furthering the six key elements that remain crucial to Eurospar’s success: the best fresh foods; giving shoppers the best value; rewarding them for shopping with Eurospar; stocking product ranges that shoppers want; providing exceptional customer service; and the best possible shopping experience. How do you go about attracting new retailers to join your group? Eurospar places a huge emphasis on retailer relationships and, as a result, we can guarantee that our retailers get the best individual service, advice and support from every member of the Eurospar team. Eurospar retailers have access to

Name of Group: Eurospar Number of Stores nationwide: 50+ Typical Store Size: Medium supermarkets 8-15,000 square feet Head office: BWG House, Greenhills Road, Tallaght, Dublin 24, D24 Y722 Wholesale partner: BWG Foods Type of distribution network: BWG National Distribution Centre (NDC) servicing fresh, ambient and alcohol to all Eurospar Supermarkets nationwide Website: www.eurospar.ie Social Media: facebook.com/ EurosparIreland • Instagram/Twitter: @eurospar_ ireland

exclusive product offers that can set them apart from their competitors, including everyday low pricing and strong weekly and three-weekly cycle promotions, and dedicated account management through a local Regional Operations Advisor. But there is nothing like peerto-peer endorsements and existing Eurospar retailers are always on hand to

Malachy Hanberry, Managing Director, Eurospar.


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Retail Groups Report strategy and in particular our vision to be ‘Famous for Fresh’. We are always looking to improve our numbers and attract new retailers. What were the other highlights of 2019 for the group? We expanded our Price Match or Better and Price Check programmes. These programmes match or better the price of thousands Eurospar supermarkets and their retailers are at the of grocery items heart of local communities around Ireland: family against competitors, run businesses, committed to servicing the local giving Eurospar neighbourhood. shoppers a confidence that speak to prospective Eurospar retailers they are getting the best price for their about the benefits of joining the family. groceries in Eurospar stores We’re also confident that the service We also drove value and we give all Eurospar retailers will be participation in our SuperEasy Rewards the most effective way of attracting new programme by taking an insights-based members into the Eurospar estate. approach to engaging with members. By rewarding smaller cohorts of customers What does your group have that others with offers based on their purchasing don’t? patterns, we increased engagement with All Eurospar Supermarkets are the programme and increased customer independently owned and operated and loyalty. are an integral part of the local communities they serve. Owners and How do you think the Irish grocery staff are committed to providing their market changed in 2019? customers with the very best of service The grocery market remains in and choice to meet their requirements a deflationary spiral, and heavy and needs. promotional discounting remains a common feature. That said, we achieved What advantages do your retail partners satisfactory sales value and volume enjoy? growth in 2019. Brexit uncertainty was an As well as availing of the services offered over-arching context that weighed heavily through the BWG Academy, Eurospar and negatively on our sector during 2019. retailers can develop their own marketing The two high-profile political deadlines and communications campaigns through of March and October seem to me to the branded assets we supply through have supplanted even the weather as the our Marketing Toolkit. Leading edge national topic of conversation. store design; continuously evolving food Consumers certainly reacted offerings; competitive trading packages; negatively to the Brexit threat, as store excellence programmes; staff evidenced by the sharp decline in the recruitment and training initiatives; consumer sentiment index across the unrivalled marketing programmes; are year, with the October 2019 Index at its just some of the tools that Eurospar lowest level since August 2013. Of course, retailers can avail of. our sector has always faced challenges, so we practitioners are used to just How many new stores joined your group ‘getting on with it’. That’s certainly what in 2019? we did during 2019! 2019 was a year of growth and consolidation for Eurospar. As well What effects do you think Brexit will as adding three new Supermarkets have on the market? to our fold, we invested heavily in the In the context of Brexit, the one thing development of our existing stores that we can also be reasonably confident to ensure that they had the in-store about is that the ongoing lack of certainty presence to deliver on Eurospar’s around future arrangements between the

UK and Europe will continue to have a negative impact on consumer sentiment in Ireland. In this context, it is difficult to find any real positives for Ireland; whatever political outcome is ultimately arrived at, a Brexit of any kind will have a negative impact on the Irish economy. This will be felt particularly hard in the food and drink industry where there is such a dependence on trade with UK manufacturers and suppliers, and where a substantial volume of this country’s fresh food requirements transit the UK en route to Ireland. A Brexit of any variety will inevitably be accompanied by cost price increases, new tariff arrangements and supply chain interruption.

Eurospar Gortahork, Co. Donegal, became the first to install solar panels as part of a partnership developed by BWG Foods and Irish renewable energy efficiency company Enerpower. Pictured are (l-r): Dr John Carty of Enerpower; Eurospar Gortahork owner Thomas McClafferty; Managing Director of Eurospar, Malachy Hanberry, and Pat McClafferty, Eurospar Gortahork owner. What plans do you have in place for 2020? Eurospar will roll-out our Famous for Great Value Wines proposition to all stores. That will see the availability of hundreds of wines at prices that match every shopper’s budget, with a variety of wines that are exclusive to Eurospar supermarkets in the Republic of Ireland. Eurospar has invested heavily in store development to allow stores to display their most comprehensive range of wines, covering every price point from €7.99 upwards, so that shoppers have a wide variety of wines that complements their shopping budget. 2020 will also see the roll out of Eurospar’s new three-year strategy that will allow us to reinforce our position within one of the busiest and most competitive markets in Ireland.


44|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Retail Groups Report

Londis celebrates local

2019 was the fourth consecutive year of growth for Londis, who also unveiled their new three-year strategy, explains Conor Hayes, Londis Sales Director. SINCE becoming part of BWG Foods in 2015, Londis has enjoyed four years of continued growth. Originally founded by a group of like-minded retailers who wanted to enhance their businesses through collaboration and co-operation, the sense of community and co-operative ethos remains at the forefront of how Londis does business today. Sales Director, Conor Hayes, explains just what makes Londis so unique. How did Londis perform in 2019? The brand’s sales performance in 2019 has been very strong, with Londis showing positive growth for the fourth consecutive year. This past year was a very important one for Londis as we launched our new three-year strategy, ‘Londis Destination 22’, at our biannual conference in Killarney at the start of October. We unveiled our store design response to the new strategy in Kelly’s Londis Milltown and announced a major new TV sponsorship of one of Ireland’s most watched TV shows, Ireland’s Fittest Family. How do you go about attracting new retailers to join Londis? At Londis, we place a strong importance on retailer relationships and as a result we can guarantee that our retailers will give an honest testimonial about the workings of our team - this strategy has worked very successfully. It is very simple really; retailers listen to retailers. We are

The state-of-the-art Londis store at Dublin City University was named Store of the Year at the 2019 Londis Retailing Awards. also very fortunate that Sean Lavin and the Retail Development Managers are very experienced and speak a common language with retailers that is invaluable in reassuring prospective retailers they’re making the right move. What does Londis offer that others don’t? An integral part of the Londis brand is the sense of community and co-operative ethos that remains at the forefront of how Londis does business today. We pride ourselves on being a large retail group with a retailer focus. Londis has a strong family orientated focus, prioritising retailers’ success, because

when Londis retailers are succeeding, the Londis brand is succeeding. At Londis, we are not content to sit on our laurels; we are always innovating year-on-year and strengthening our retailing offering. We encourage our retailers to invest in developing their stores to keep them at the cutting edge of retail and BWG Foods has put in place a programme of co-investment with Londis retailers to upgrade and modernise their stores. This is supported by an ever-evolving new store concept and retail offer. It is all these initiatives combined that ensures differentiation from competitors, along with driving growth across the Londis group.


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Retail Groups Report Fact File: Londis Name of Group: Londis Number of Stores nationwide: 130+ Typical Store Size: 200 square metres Head office: BWG House, Greenhills Road, Tallaght, Dublin 24, D24 Y722 Wholesale partner: BWG Foods Type of distribution network: BWG National Distribution Centre (NDC) servicing fresh, ambient and alcohol to Londis stores nationwide. Website: www.londis.ie Social Media: Facebook.com/Londis Ireland; Instagram: @LondisIreland; Twitter: @LondisIreland Tagline: Local like you

What advantages do your retail partners enjoy? The retailer and their needs are at the forefront of our operating procedures. With that in mind, we nurture a retailerfocused approach to all aspects of the retail business and encourage an open relationship from the very top all the way through the organisation. This is particularly evident in the development of the BWG Academy, which is a pioneering employee professional development initiative, which includes a dedicated, Dublin-based training and education centre for all our Londis retailers to utilise. This suite of services encompasses everything from recruiting and retaining reliable staff to supporting individual staff on their personal career paths. This is just one initiative that Londis retailers can avail of. What were the highlights of 2019 for the Londis group? Londis had a very successful year with recruitment of stores in 2019 and the Londis estate is expanding and we hope to continue with that success for 2020. As I already mentioned, Londis presented the first part of our three year, ‘Londis Destination 22’ strategy at our very successful biannual conference that took place in The Europe Hotel & Resort in Killarney. We received very positive feedback from our retailer partners during - and post - the event, and we are now striving to update everyone with our progress in early 2020. In June 2019, over 200 Londis retailers, staff, family and friends took on the Hell & Back challenge to raise funds for the Londis charity partner Pieta House. Londis are long-time sponsors of the Hell & Back event, so it was a natural

Londis had a very successful year with recruitment of stores in 2019. fit that we would take on this hellish challenge as our annual fund-raiser. We are thrilled to have Pieta House as our charity partner and, as a combined group of Londis retailers, we are very proud to have raised over €400,000 over the last four years. Every store has played their part in raising this money. It was a very memorable day. We have a great event lined up for 2020, Under the Stars for Joy in aid of Pieta House. We have had a hugely successful year in terms of store standards and industry awards. We had the highest number of retailers achieving the highest standard

Conor Hayes, Londis Sales Director. as set out by SMA store audits in our Londis Retailing Awards this year. Store standards are a very important part of our future and we are thrilled to be making huge steps in this regard, and this is helped in no small way by the RDM team. Finally, we are delighted to be the new proud sponsors of one of Ireland’s most watched TV shows, Ireland’s Fittest Family. This was a significant investment for the Londis brand but one we confidently took as it is a great addition to the Londis brand’s marketing strategy. How do you think the Irish grocery market changed in 2019? Sustainability and foodie trends have come to the fore in 2019 and this is

something I believe will continue to grow into 2020. People are becoming very interested in determining the provenance of the food they are consuming, across all ranges. We know, for example, that a lot of people are conscious about reducing their consumption of meat for sustainability reasons and research tells us that in Ireland at the moment, one in three people are eating less meat. More and more shoppers consider themselves to be vegan or vegetarian and there is an increase in buying “free from” foods, whether it be free from gluten, sugar or dairy. This is something that Londis retailers are particularly well positioned to capitalise on because they are attuned to the needs of their local customer base. What effects do you think Brexit will have on the market? In the event that a Brexit of any kind takes place, the potential impact on the Irish economy will be almost certainly negative. From a food and drink perspective, this is certainly the case: the dependence on UK suppliers and manufacturing facilities, the reliance upon the UK land-bridge and the threat of a new tariff regime will lead to cost price increases and supply chain interruption. In the interim, we can also be reasonably confident that the ongoing lack of certainty around Brexit will continue to have a negative impact on consumer sentiment in Ireland. What plans does Londis have in place for 2020? In the longer term, Londis is focused on the roll out of our three-year strategy ‘Londis Destination 22’. It is a more focused approach to retailing in Ireland and deals with everything relating to shopper buying habits and trends, digital and technological advancements, marketing, store standards, store profitability and new fresh food concepts. It is a very exciting year for Londis and I am very much looking forward to the future of our brand.


46|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Retail Groups Report

Mace: going the extra smile 2019 has been an incredible year for Mace, explains Daniel O’Connell, Mace Sales Director, as the brand prepares to celebrate its 60th birthday in the new year. MACE has been serving the needs of Irish shoppers since the first store opened in 1960, with the convenience brand evolving in line with Irish shoppers over the intervening decades. Mace Sales Director, Daniel O’Connell, talks us through the brand’s brilliant 2019 and the plans in place for its 60th birthday celebrations next year. How did Mace perform in 2019? Mace has had an incredible year on a number of fronts. New store developments have been at a record high; sales have been performing ahead of the market and our marketing campaign

Daniel O’Connell, Mace Sales Director.

featuring our brand ambassador, Johnny Sexton, has resonated with our shoppers beyond our expectations. All in all, we are delighted with the performance and it puts us in good stead for the new year when Mace will be celebrating its 60th anniversary, which is a fantastic milestone for the brand. How do you go about attracting new retailers to join your group? Our toolkit for attracting new retailers has a number of facets to it. We have an incredibly strong and dedicated Mace sales team, who proactively recruit new retailers to our group. Leading edge store design; continuously evolving food offerings; competitive trading packages; store excellence programmes; staff recruitment and training initiatives; unrivalled marketing programmes: these are just some of the tools that the Mace team work on in conjunction with new retailers. However, the most important and effective methods to attract new retailers are retailers that have converted to Mace. New retailers to the group have been overwhelmingly positive about their experience and their commercial performance since joining Mace. So we always recommend that prospective retailers speak to our current customers. What does Mace offer that others don’t? To be the longest established convenience

Fact File: Mace Name of Group: Mace Number of Stores nationwide: 160 Typical Store Size: 135 square metres Head office: BWG House, Greenhills Road, Tallaght, Dublin 24, D24 Y722 Wholesale partner: BWG Foods Type of distribution network: BWG National Distribution Centre (NDC) servicing fresh, ambient and alcohol to all Mace stores nationwide Website: www.mace.ie Social Media: • facebook.com/MACEIreland • Twitter: @MACEIreland • YouTube.com/MACEIreland

retail brand in Ireland is evidence that the Mace team fully understand the need to evolve and adapt to ensure we meet the needs of shoppers and retailers. Backed by the buying power of BWG Foods, Mace retailers have access to an unrivalled range of house brands of foods and hot beverage solutions, an award-winning distribution service and innovative instore ordering technology. Mace offers retailers an instantly


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Retail Groups Report

The Mace brand will celebrate its 60th anniversary in 2020. recognisable brand that is known by shoppers as Irish, local and friendly. Our new contemporary store image has been hugely successful. The fit-out, while being very competitive, delivers an excellent mix of sales and profitability. The Mace sales team are very hands on with retailers to drive the commercial performance of their businesses by executing our Mace brand strategy in their stores every day. What advantages do your retail partners enjoy? Clearly, there are many advantages for independent retailers being part of a symbol group. However, Mace retailers enjoy additional tailored advantages for their store. Current and new retailers can expect quality services in the area of store design and development, IT Systems, great national and local marketing, a best-in-class national multi-temperature

distribution system and of course they benefit from the buying power of a large group. But they also can benefit from great support in the area of HR services and recruitment, including online and off site staff training, staff recruitment and management development courses. In addition, the Mace sales team are on hand to develop their business to achieve long term sales and profitability growth. It’s important for Mace to continue to expand into communities around the country and to bring our excellent offer of superior customer service and fresh food offerings to local shoppers and to those in transit. In total, Mace developed nine new store locations as part of our on-going network development in 2019. What were the highlights of 2019 for you? There are some significant achievements

Mace’s marketing campaign featuring brand ambassador, Johnny Sexton, has resonated strongly with shoppers.

that Mace has attained in 2019. I would first like to acknowledge the fantastic performance of our retailers. Talty’s Mace Lissycasey was awarded a three in a row at the Best in Fresh Awards this year, whilst Roche’s Mace Shanagolden was awarded a Q mark by EIQA for the second year in succession, with Mace Sandymount also on the winners’ podium. This was the second award win for this store, whose manager won a GRAM award earlier in the year. On top of that, we are overwhelmed by the positive consumer reaction to our Mace advertising and digital campaigns featuring Irish rugby star Johnny Sexton. The positive feedback received by our retailers from their shoppers, and backed up by market research results, has proven what a successful campaign has been produced. This was further acknowledged when Mace won ‘Best Integrated Media Strategy / Campaign Award’ at the Spiders 2019. How do you think the Irish grocery market changed in 2019? There are some trends in the marketplace that are affecting all shoppers and that in turn impacts on the grocery market and how we as a brand need to keep evolving. Technology, the health agenda and sustainability are all key drivers within the Irish market, which we believe are going to change how retailers need to adapt their business to meet shoppers’ needs. What effects do you think Brexit will have on the market? There really isn’t enough space within this article to outline the various impacts on the market and given the ever-changing nature of the Brexit process, no doubt things will have changed by the time this has gone to print! What plans do you have in place for 2020? Mace is the longest established retail convenience brand in the market and 2020 is our 60th anniversary. It’s a fantastic milestone and we want to celebrate it with our retailers and shoppers alike, so planning is well under way on that front. There will be a number of important announcements made at the Mace Convention in 2020 which paves the way for the brand to continue to progress with the grocery retail market. Our marketing campaigns have been delivering incredible results for Mace, so we will be revealing even more initiatives as part of the work we do with Johnny Sexton. Watch this space!


48|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Retail Groups Report

XL’s excellent year XL is a flexible retail symbol partner, providing retailers with the opportunity to receive all of the benefits of symbol group membership whilst retaining their independence, explains Paul Bealin, Head of Sales. XL is one of Ireland’s fastest growing symbol groups. This has been achieved by encouraging retailers to retain their independence and local identity, while also benefiting from the many advantages of symbol group membership. Paul Bealin, Head of Sales, talks us through the group’s highlights of 2019 and its plans for the coming year. How did your group perform in 2019? Overall, the XL brand has had a consistently strong performance yearon-year. Sales across a number of categories, including chilled foods, deli and coffee, all saw strong growth. This reflects XL’s focus on our store offering, ensuring the latest concepts and offerings in fresh foods, deli and coffee to go are being offered. How do you go about attracting new retailers to join your group? As a national brand with a local approach, offering retailers the opportunity to retain their independence and local identity, recruitment to the symbol often occurs at a very local on-the-ground level. Both the XL dedicated business development

managers and Value Centre sales team are very focused on new business, as well as serving existing customers. XL offers a flexible, market-leading package, which enables retailers to tailor their shop to consumer needs, and also to react quickly to changing market conditions in order to grow their business. XL’s affordable fit-out cost is one of its many attractions. What does XL offer that other groups don’t? XL is a flexible retail symbol partner, providing retailers with the opportunity to receive all of the benefits of symbol group membership whilst retaining their independence. The partnership is designed to help retailers do business on their own terms, helping to grow sales, minimise costs and maximise profit. XL offers unique consumer promotions which run up to five times a year, aiming to celebrate consumer loyalty as well as encourage it. Campaigns will often involve a fun element or a local community engagement element and examples of prizes have included a week in an adult

Fact File: XL Name of Group: XL Number of Stores nationwide: 250+ Typical Store Size: 110 square metres Head office: BWG House, Greenhills Road, Tallaght, Dublin 24, D24 Y722 Wholesale partner: Value Centre Type of distribution network: 22 Value Centre and Cash and Carry outlets nationwide and chill distribution Website: www.xlstores.ie Social Media: www.facebook.com/ XLIreland/ Tagline: A great deal more at your local store

Gaeltacht and a bicycle for every store to give away! What advantages do your retail partners enjoy? With access to competitively priced


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Retail Groups Report whereby participants are measured on a range of areas, including promotions, merchandising, fresh foods offering, hygiene and customer service, and winners are selected through independent judging. There were many deserving winners and we also introduced three special awards: best newcomer, best community initiative and customer service store of the year. Cassidy’s XL, Carrickmacross, Co. Monaghan, took home the overall accolade of XL Store of the Year.

XL is a flexible retail symbol partner, providing retailers with the opportunity to receive all of the benefits of symbol group membership whilst retaining their independence. products and innovative offerings via the buying power of BWG Foods, one of the many benefits retailers avail of is a vast and diverse supply network through its Value Centre wholesale cash and carry network, and through the company’s chill distribution centre in Dublin. Strategically positioned with 22 Value Centre and Cash outlets located around Ireland, every XL retailer is never far from one and has the full support of their branch. We are renowned for providing superior customer service and our local teams are able to offer advice and expertise. The development team work continuously with retailers to review store performance, ensure the shop layout is working and that sales opportunities are being maximised. We are delighted to have recorded significant growth in 2019 in our store numbers, adding 13 new XLs, and look forward to even more growth in 2020. What were the highlights of 2019 for you? The XL brand was shortlisted for an All Ireland Marketing Award (AIM) in the Gradam Margaíochta le Gaeilge 2019 (Irish marketing) category, which recognises the success and contribution to the on-going process of strengthening the economy of our island. This shortlist came four months after XL was a finalist for Sponsorship of the Year at the Irish Sponsorship Awards. We had one of the best years for our Store of the Year Awards programme,

Paul Bealin, Head of Sales, XL. How do you think the Irish grocery market changed in 2019? Consumers today are more health conscious, eating less processed foods and are looking for more convenient ways to follow a healthier lifestyle and diet. The range of fresh produce has never been

more available to consumers and the increase in demand only demonstrates that consumers are more familiar and adventurous with these products. While the demands for healthier, fresher and natural food solutions are increasing, there is also a trend towards indulgence! What effects do you think Brexit will have on the market? The uncertainly of Brexit and what it will bring is still the main challenge facing the entire industry. As one of the fastest growing convenience brands in the Irish market, XL remains in a strong position to face the challenges and has thrived in what is a highly competitive landscape. On a local level, there are pressures on rate increases, rising wages and compliance costs and that’s why being part of a bigger group offers independent retailers an invaluable support mechanism. What plans do you have in place for 2020? Having been proud sponsors of Ireland’s only Irish language soap, Ros na Rún, since 2017, we’re proud to be developing a tradition of supporting the Irish language. There are some exciting storylines coming to TV screens in 2020 so watch this space! The XL Facebook page will continue to offer lots of interesting Irish focused content. XL is also keeping a very keen eye on both current and future trends, such as the rise of veganism and alternative offerings to suit the ever-evolving consumer. XL will be making a focused effort to maximise its offering in these areas.

XL offers a flexible, market-leading package, which enables retailers to tailor their shop to consumer needs.


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Retail Groups Report

Super Year for SuperValu SuperValu celebrated its 40th birthday in 2019, picking up a host of award wins for both its stores and its product range. SUPERVALU, along with its sister group, Centra, celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2019. The group continues to grow from strength to strength. Its 2018 results saw the group recording a new sales milestone of €2.724 billion. A key trend was the continued growth in SuperValu’s online shopping service, with 25% year-on-year growth in online sales and an additional 26,000 new customers using the service during 2018. 2019 saw the group expanded its network by opening three new stores, creating 210 new jobs in the process, and revamping 30 additional stores as part of a €30m investment programme. Leaders in sustainability SuperValu also takes a leadership position when it comes to sustainability. In 2018, SuperValu became the first retailer in Ireland to introduce fully compostable and biodegradable bags for produce, along with increasing its loose range of fruit and veg. It followed this up by becoming the first national grocery retailer to introduce 100% compostable coffee cups through all Frank and Honest stations in its stores. These form part of a broader strategy to reduce packaging and make 100% of SuperValu’s Own Brand and fresh produce packaging become recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025. Speaking at the SuperValu conference in the Great Southern Hotel in Killarney, Co. Kerry, SuperValu Managing Director Martin Kelleher said: “We continue to build on our food leadership credentials and further establish SuperValu as a destination shop by responding to consumer trends and shopping requirements both in-store and online…. as we continue to roll-out new shopping concepts such as Vegetarian and Vegan zones, new salad bars and health and wellness aisles, adding both theatre and on trend ranges for the new shopper’s evolving tastes.”. The SuperValu National Conference

Pictured at SuperValu Kinsale are (l-r): Ian Allen, Sales Director, SuperValu; Martin Kelleher, Managing Director, SuperValu and Michael Smith, SuperValu Kinsale and SuperValu Retail Chair. in February also saw the presentation of the SuperValu Store of the Year Award to Dano’s SuperValu in Mallow. Dano’s has operated in the Cork town since 1967, when opened by Dan and Rose O’Mahony, parents of the current owner, Paul, who noted how “Trading in Mallow for over 50 years and going from a small galvanised shed to a 16,500 square feet store is a real endorsement for the hard work of the staff over the years and the people of Mallow for their support of a local retailer and local producers.” A year of awards 2019 was a year of award wins for SuperValu. Garvey’s SuperValu in Corbally, Limerick, won the National Supermarket of the Year Award 2020 at the Retail Excellence Awards. Scally’s SuperValu in Clonakilty, Co. Cork, was the winner of the Diversity & Inclusion Award at the global IGD awards for its work on Autism Friendly Shopping, beating off global brands such as CocaCola and retail groups such as Co-Op Group to scoop the coveted prize. As part of SuperValu’s autism-friendly shopping programme, the Clonakilty store has

provided specialised training to staff and organised autism-friendly shopping nights in the store. SuperValu’s autism programme is part of its commitment to building sustainable communities across Ireland. Following on from the launch of its instore autism-friendly initiatives, last year, Scally’s worked together with autism charity AsIAm and other local businesses in the Cork town to gain recognition for Clonakilty as Ireland’s first autismfriendly town. The group scooped a massive 118 Blás Na hÉireann awards at the annual awards ceremony in Dingle. SuperValu picked up 42 awards for its own brand range of products – winning 21 Gold, 11 Silver and 10 bronze, while SuperValu’s Food Academy producers went home with 76 awards, 25 Gold, 27 Silver and 24 Bronze, including two Chef’s Larder Awards for Rocker Organic Farm Mixed Salad Leaves & Dunanny Organic Flour. “SuperValu have always been committed to supporting Irish food suppliers, with 75% of products on our shelves sourced or produced in Ireland and these awards are a real


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Retail Groups Report its kind in Ireland, as part of the Irish grocery retailer’s Real Rewards loyalty programme. Under the terms of the partnership, all Irish Visa debit and credit cardholders will have the opportunity to Pictured are (l-r): Jenni Mundy, Managing Director, UK & double their Ireland, at Visa, Philip Konopik, Country Manager, Ireland at Real Rewards Visa and Martin Kelleher, Managing Director, SuperValu. points when they shop with endorsement of our commitment and SuperValu. SuperValu’s Real Rewards passion to not only support more Irish loyalty scheme currently has 1.3m food producers than any other retailer but members, who earn Real Rewards points also source the best quality products for for every purchase made in-store. our customers,” noted Martin Kelleher. “There has been a huge change in “We’re very proud that SuperValu and so how Irish shoppers make purchases many of our superb local producers have thanks to new technology like contactless received the recognition they deserve payments and the Internet of Things. once again.” Naturally this partnership with Visa was SuperValu’s renowned steak range a perfect fit as a result, giving our loyal received more global accolades at this customers the opportunity to double the year’s World Steak Challenge, held for money-back vouchers that they receive the first time in Ireland, with SuperValu’s from SuperValu,” explained Martin Signature Tastes Hereford Fillet Steak Kelleher. and Signature Tastes Hereford Ribeye The group also continued its hugely Steak both scooping gold awards at the successful SuperValu Getaway Breaks international competition. SuperValu’s brand, now in its 20th year. 2019 saw in Signature Tastes Hereford Striploin Steak the region of 80,000 Irish tourists take also received a silver award. a staycation via the discounted break brand, generating approximately €8m in Unique partnership with Visa revenue for hotels. SuperValu continues to innovate in terms of adding value for its customers. SuperValu celebrates 10-years as GAA November saw the group announcing a partner new partnership with Visa, the first of 2019 saw SuperValu celebrating a decade

Pictured receiving the SuperValu Store of the Year award for 2019 are Paul and Claire O’Mahony, Owners of Dano’s SuperValu Mallow with Ray Meaney, Store Manager.

as sponsor of the GAA Football AllIreland Senior Championship. This year alone, the group contributed over €2.6m to the GAA and GAA Clubs across the country, and throughout their 10 years as GAA sponsor, SuperValu has contributed over €18m to aid the development of our national sport. “Our partnership with the GAA has been a fantastic fit for SuperValu, over the past 10-years,” noted Ray Kelly, SuperValu Marketing Director. “From GAA to Tidy Towns, SuperValu prides itself on being a valued member of every community in which we operate. Our GAA partnership has allowed us to support the development of the game – from where it all begins at grassroots level in towns and communities across Ireland, to players who represent their parish and county. We are very proud to have been on this journey for the past decade and we look forward to continuing our support.” As part of their sponsorship activity this Championship season, SuperValu worked with its ambassadors and the GAA community, to explore what it is that makes GAA so unique. The ‘Where you’re from’ campaign was created to encapsulate the shared values of SuperValu and the GAA, shining a light on people and players who give their lives to football, telling stories of personal challenges and resilience through their GAA brand ambassadors: Bernard Brogan, Dublin; Peter Keane, Kerry; Oisin Kiernan, Cavan; Valerie Mulcahy, Cork; and Andy Moran, Mayo. SuperValu also continued its sponsorship of the TidyTowns competition for the 28th year, with Glaslough, Co. Monaghan named as Ireland’s Tidiest Town for 2019. At the awards presentation, Michael Ring TD, Minister for Rural and Community Development, paid tribute to SuperValu. who “have shown fantastic support for the competition, not only through their financial sponsorship but also through the support provided to local TidyTowns groups by their network of local retailers.” SuperValu was official food partner of WellFest, Ireland’s leading health and wellness festival, for the third year, in May SuperValu serves over 2.6m customers every week and has 220 stores nationwide. Together with its retail partners, SuperValu employs approximately 14,500 staff members, making it one of the State’s largest private-sector employers. SuperValu continues to source locally wherever possible, which helps to sustain 30,000 jobs in the Irish economy.


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Centra continues to innovate Centra celebrated 40 years in operation with a super year, as the convenience retailer continues to evolve with its customers. CENTRA celebrated its 40th birthday in 2019, along with its sister brand, SuperValu. The year began well, as Centra announced its annual results for 2018, where it registered a new record, after hitting sales of €1.63 billion, an increase of 3.6% year on year, further cementing the brand’s position as number one in the convenience market. Speaking at the Centra conference Pictured at the Centra National Conference are (l-r): Dan Curtin, Centra Sales Director; Martin at the Great Kelleher, Centra Managing Director, and Donal Hickson, Chair, Centra Council. Southern Hotel in breakfast roll but walking into a Centra Year award for 2019. Dan Curtin, Sales Killarney, Martin today illustrates how the concept has Director of Centra, said, “Centra stores, Kelleher, Centra Managing Director, been revolutionised with products like such as Cosgrove’s at Maugheraboy, are said: “Our record sales performance is perfect examples of independent retailers Cold Press Tumeric Shots and Paleo testament to the dedication of over 463 Salads,” noted Martin Kelleher. “We aim working hard in their local communities Centra store owners across the country to stay one step ahead of the competition to succeed in a very competitive market, who provide market leading stores in in this respect by ensuring we stay close by meeting the needs of their customers. convenient locations and our ongoing to the modern Irish consumer, who is They provide choice, value and excellent investment in shaping the future of looking for health alternatives, innovative service within their locality on a daily the convenience market. Responding ranges and great quality food for those basis.” to consumers, retailers and market short on time”. 2019 saw Centra opening 25 new trends, Centra has developed a healthier The retailer’s premium “Inspired by” stores across the country, as well as offering and innovative range unrivalled Centra range, which includes products refreshing 80 stores, as part of a €35m by competitors. We plan to continue our like Cold Pressed Turmeric Shots and expansion through new initiatives like our investment, which sees 375 jobs added Paleo Superbowls, reflects the evolving to the Centra network. The revamp Inspired by Centra luxury range, Moo’d taste of the Irish consumer, who is more programme saw Centra rolling out the ice cream and Frank and Honest Coffee, health conscious and looks for premium latest thinking in the convenience market along with driving innovation across all products. Since its launch in July 2018, the that meets new trends and provides areas of the store.” range continues to grow rapidly and was shoppers with a seamless shopping The Centra National Conference rewarded at the prestigious Great Taste experience. saw Cosgrove’s Centra in Maugheraboy, Awards, where the range picked up 16 “In the past, convenience stores Co. Sligo, named the best Centra in awards. Indeed, Centra won 26 accolades would have been synonymous with the Ireland, scooping the Centra Store of the


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Retail Groups Report further seven products to the range and launching new take-home packs in three flavours. Combining the best Irish dairy and Italian ingredients, a unique delicious ice-cream range has been created to offer a contemporary take on an Irish favourite. This year also saw Centra introducing a brand-new vegan range hot from the deli, including a VeganBon, a Vegan Breakfast Bap and a Vegan Sausage Roll.

Des and Martha Cosgrove from Centra Maugheraboy, Co. Sligo, winners of the Centra Store of the Year award for 2019. in total. The Inspired by Centra Porcini & Truffle Ravioli and the Inspired by Centra Buffalo Mozzarella Ravioli were the star products, as both received two-star awards. The Centra Crème Fraiche was awarded two stars for a second time. Not surprising, Centra’s multi-award winning Inspired by Centra Angus sirloin and striploin steaks also picked up a Great Taste Award 2019. The Frank and Honest gourmet coffee offering available in Centra has been a real success, quickly establishing itself as the number one coffee brand in

Ireland. Frank and Honest’s popularity has been further built upon with the launch of capsule and whole bean ranges for the at-home market, a range of coffee accessories and the roll-out of in-store cafes. May 2019 saw Frank and Honest revealing a new range of cold brew coffee, including Cold Brew Coffee Original, Cold Brew Coffee Mocha and Cold Brew Coffee with Coconut. Building on its successful introduction of new brands, 2019 saw Centra rolling out a new ice cream brand – Moo’d – to over 200 stores, adding a

Centra celebrated its sponsorship of the GAA All Ireland Senior Hurling Championship for a 10th year through its #WeAreHurling campaign.

Centra hurling sponsorship Centra continued its sponsorship of the GAA All Ireland Senior Hurling Championship for a 10th year, celebrating its association through its #WeAreHurling campaign. Centra teamed up with Clare’s Podge Collins, Galway’s Niall Burke, Cork manager John Meyler and Dublin’s Cliodhna O’Connor, to reveal their passions on and off the pitch. The campaign recognises and celebrates the individuals within our communities, be it players, supporters, coaches, parents and in many cases its own Centra local retailers, that help make hurling great. Ray Kelly, Marketing Director with Centra, emphasised the importance of Centra’s partnership with the GAA. “Centra is very proud to be entering our tenth year as sponsors of the GAA All Ireland Senior Hurling Championship. Our partnership with the GAA is a natural fit, given the role we play in over 460 communities across the country, communities in which the GAA plays a hugely significant role, with many of Centra’s retailers playing a pivotal role in providing support to their local GAA clubs. We both believe in the power of community and the important role we play in improving the everyday lives of people within those communities right across Ireland.” Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael, John Horan said: “The GAA partnership with Centra is a natural fit. Particularly, our shared presence at the heart of communities right around Ireland. Centra’s #WeAreHurling is a celebration of the power of community and the potential of what can be achieved when people come together. The Centra campaign brings to life the nature of the GAA as an organisation, in particular the reliance on the goodwill and volunteerism of people right around Ireland at all levels of the game.” With over 460 stores nationwide, Centra employs almost 11,000 people and serves over three million customers per week.


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A Gala Performance

2019 was another great year for Gala Retail, with a host of partnerships, promotions and giveaways.

2019 has been a great year for Gala Retail, packed full of activity from partnerships to promotions and massive giveaways. Building on a successful year of 20th birthday celebrations in 2018, which saw the Gala Group reward thousands of customers and communities across Ireland, 2019 saw a continuation of this theme. With over 200 stores nationally and growing, the ‘independent’ nature of Gala Retail’s operating structure continues to be a key driver in attracting new retailers to join Gala. The group’s experience and expertise in the retail sector combines with a flexibility and autonomy offered to retailers that allows them to develop unique, local offerings that are tailored to their community. The Gala Group is made up of a variety of store formats, including forecourt, ‘neighbourhood’ and ‘high street’ stores. Stores in the Gala Group include Gala and Your Stop. “It has been another great year for the Gala Group, including supporting Special Olympics Ireland at the World Summer Games for the second time, launching the Gala Family Fun holiday giveway, delivering another successful Gala Gifts for Schools competition and launching the first ever Gala Retail/ Sunday Independent Inspiration Awards,” explains Gala Retail CEO, Gary Desmond. “A number of in-store promotions and giveaways throughout the year help our retailers to continue to offer consumers an extra incentive to shop with Gala, in addition to offering great value convenience retailing in the heart of the community.” Random Acts of Kindness Day In February, Gala marked Random Acts of

CEO of Gala Retail, Gary Desmond, and Gala Gifts for Schools Ambassador, TV personality and entrepreneur, Aoibhín Garrihy were joined by school children, Brooke Foy and Harrison Clarke for the launch of Gala Gifts for Schools 2019, at Airfield Estate, Dundrum. Kindness Day with a surprise donation of €5,000 to the Barretstown charity, which offers free, specially designed camps and programmes for children and their families living with a serious illness – supported behind the scenes by 24-hour on-site medical and nursing care. Car Giveaway January saw three lucky Gala customers winning a brand new Toyota Aygo car, the top prizes in Gala Retail’s biggest ever Gala Gifts promotion. When shoppers spent €10 or more, they received a

Gala Gifts scratch card, giving them the opportunity to win one of 150,000 instant prizes, including the three Toyota Aygo cars. Special Olympics 2019 saw Gala enter its fifth year of partnership with Special Olympics Ireland, coinciding with the Special Olympics World Summer Games. As an official sponsor of Team Ireland, the Gala Group and its 200 stores helped to fund the travel and participation of the 91 Irish athletes who represented their country at

Former Republic of Ireland international Niall Quinn, Matt English, CEO, Special Olympics Ireland, and Gary Desmond, CEO, Gala Retail (centre), Majella Hennessy of the Gala Retail Council (far left); Karen Coventry, Director of Sport at Special Olympics Ireland, and Gala board member, Pat O’Sullivan of M & P O’Sullivan, pictured with Special Olympics Team Ireland soccer players at the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena in Blanchardstown, Dublin, ahead of their departure to the Special Olympic World Games 2019 in Abu Dhabi.


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Retail Groups Report

Pictured at the Gala Excellence in Retail Awards are CEO of Gala Retail, Gary Desmond, with host of the awards, Síle Seoige, and ‘Mind Magician’, Keith Barry. the Games, which took place in Abu Dhabi in March. Gala stores cheered on Team Ireland from afar, decked out in branded bunting, flags and merchandise for the Games and the group commissioned over 1,500 baseball caps and t-shirts for Team Ireland athletes, volunteers and supporters going to Abu Dhabi. Coinciding with the Games, Gala Retail also ran a holiday giveaway promotion on the Ian Dempsey Show on Today FM, giving away €500 Gala vouchers daily, with an end-of-week prize of a luxury trip for two to the UAE. Gala Family Fun Building on the success of its European Breaks Giveaway, in 2019 Gala launched the Gala Family Fun giveaway, which saw the Gala Group giving away five family trips to terrific locations, including

Disneyland Florida, Disneyland Paris, Legoland and the Algarve. Gala Gifts for Schools Following a hugely successful launch of the inaugural Gala Gifts for Schools competition in 2018, Gala Gifts for Schools returned this year with an increased prize fund of €30,000, split among three winning primary schools. St. Safan’s N.S. in Donegal, Gaelscoil Eoghain Uí Thuairisc, Carlow, and Scoil Mhuire Junior, Blakestown, all received top prizes of €10,000 each after their video submissions to the competition were selected as winning entries. Gala Retail / Sunday Independent Inspiration Awards This year marked the launch of the firstever Gala Retail / Sunday Independent Inspiration Awards, which took place

Pictured at the launch of the first ever Gala Retail / Sunday Independent Inspiration Awards are Sunday Independent columnist and Health & Wellness Coach Alison Canavan; Gary Desmond, CEO, Gala Retail; and Cormac Bourke, Editor, Sunday Independent.

at the Marker Hotel in November. Gala joined forces with The Sunday Independent to search for Ireland’s unsung heroes; those individuals who make Ireland a better place with their selfless acts and inspirational deeds. From hundreds of nominations, 18 finalists were selected, with six category winners on the night. Kate Durrant from Cork was named as Overall Inspirational Person of the Year, presented with her trophy by former Ireland soccer legend, Niall Quinn, having earlier been presented with the Inspiration in the Community accolade by Roz Purcell. Other awards presented at the event included Inspirational Young Person, Inspiration in Environmental Change, Inspirational Carer, Inspiration in Sports and Inspirational Charity Champion. Gala Excellence in Retail Awards & trade fair Hundreds of guests attended the annual Gala Trade Fair and Gala Excellence in Retail Awards ceremony which took place in October at The K Club. Retailers, wholesalers, suppliers and Gala stakeholders converged on Kildare, where they first attended the Gala trade fair at Punchestown, with over 100 suppliers taking part, followed by a night spent celebrating excellence in retailing at the Gala Group’s Awards. Presented to stores that are deemed ‘outstanding’ following a comprehensive and independent assessment process under the Gala Business Excellence Standards Tool (B.E.S.T) programme, the Gala annual Excellence in Retail Awards recognise excellence in retailing throughout the Gala Group. A record number of awards were presented this year, with 60 stores from across the country being recognised for excellence in retailing and 12 Category Awards presented, including the Customer Service and Brand Champion awards, among others. Looking ahead to 2020 With a number of new store openings planned for the New Year, as well as more Gala stores undergoing a brand refresh and increasing their in-store concept offerings, 2020 is set to be another busy year for the Gala Group. “In 2020, we will look forward to building on another successful year of marketing and promotional activity, growing the Gala brand through innovation, our charity partnership with Special Olympics Ireland and our initiatives that aim to give back to our customers and the communities in which operate, while continuing to innovate and develop our Gala concepts for our retailers.”


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Retail Groups Report

Costcutter: community retailing at its best 2019 marked another prosperous year of Costcutter, which saw its national presence grow, along with making significant developments to its retail offering, securing its place as one of Ireland’s leading convenience brands. FOR Costcutter, local and community involvement are core values of the brand. Costcutter prides itself on being ‘proud to be local’. The retail group, owned by Barry Group, partners with local business people to offer a competitive and immersive shopping environment within their communities. However, local doesn’t stop at having the brand present. The group strives for its retailers to be active members in their community and for them to make a true impact. The importance of inclusivity Another key value this progressive symbol group abides by is inclusivity. While local is an important value and pillar of the brand, being a truly authentic Irish brand, Costcutter stands for something.

“We must think beyond the transactional nature of the convenience sector and give our customers an opportunity to understand and connect with the brand,” notes Paul Roche, Head of Costcutter. “By applying the principle of inclusivity as an additional key value, it makes Costcutter accessible to all. The Costcutter brand champions inclusivity and strives for everyone to feel welcome in our stores nationwide. No matter who you are, where you are from, your beliefs, Costcutter is at the centre of your community and is there to service your needs.” The group is looking forward to activating this key messaging in national marketing campaigns in 2020 to celebrate its community involvement.

Key focus on fresh In a bid to respond to the ever-evolving needs of Irish consumers, the retail group has further developed a key focus on its fresh offering in the past 12 months. “Consumers in general have become more health conscious and have taken the time to self-educate on the best and most beneficial choice and are now making informed nutritional decisions for themselves,” explains Jim Barry, Managing Director. “Gone are the days of brands hiding behind an exhaustive list of ingredients; consumers now challenge these norms and want to be heard. We truly welcome this change and see a clear benefit for us and our retailers to this change in society.” As consumers are heading towards


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Stafford’s Costcutter, Clonard, Co. Wexford, won the Costcutter Store of the Year Award. Pictured are (l-r): Paul Roche, Head of Costcutter Sales, Barry Group; Edwina Lucey, Sales Director, Barry Group; Brent Pope; Bena Stafford, Michael Power and Jennifer Martin, from the winning store; and Jim Barry, Managing Director, Barry Group. end of the day, people appreciate good high quality food and that is a key reason why these offerings have been so profitable for retailers.” In addition to the retail group’s focus on fresh, it has also made strides in relation to sustainability. Across its Urban Sips coffee brand, Freezi Licks Ice Cream and The Salad Patch, the packaging is all certified recyclable and compostable. A true asset to the Costcutter brand is the marketing function. 2019 saw the brand’s involvement in The Barry Group Race & Taste Festival at Cork Racecourse. This festival offered a platform to all of the brands in the Barry Group brand portfolio, including Costcutter, Carry Out Off Licence, Urban Sips, Freezi Licks, Conbec Dry Irish Gin and the group’s own brand and exclusive brands. In addition to this, retailers in the Costcutter group are supported with the development of their local marketing channels and national marketing campaigns. Further reiterating the success of Costcutter, 2019 was a year of multiple national award wins for Costcutter retailers, along with Stafford’s Costcutter Clonard being awarded Costcutter Store of the Year 2019 in the group’s annual awards ceremony last The Salad Patch offers consumers freshly September. prepared bespoke salads. a healthy fresh offering, Costcutter has made strides in supporting its retailers with a retail infrastructure that offers a fantastic fresh food range to the modern consumer. Over the past 18 months, significant investment was allocated in establishing a new in-store fresh offering, which is currently being implemented in stores nationwide. This includes the introduction of two fresh food offerings that go beyond the standard deli. “We have Market St Deli, which is our premium deli, that offers extremely high-quality deli options,” reveals Edwina Lucey, Sales Director. “We also have The Salad Patch, which offers consumers freshly prepared bespoke salads. At the

2020’s landscape Going into 2020, the brand’s primary focus will be to continue responding to the evolving needs of consumers, sustainability, further developing its fresh food offering and implementing this in many more of its stores nationwide. In the coming year, Costcutter will also continue to grow the brand, with innovative marketing campaigns being implemented for both the Costcutter and Urban Sips brands. At a national level, Costcutter is operating in a competitive landscape, where it is successfully holding ground and further expanding its network of retail outlets. This comes down to Barry Group’s approach to business, the relationships they build with retailers and consumers and its accomplished team. At a local level, there are challenges which are very real and affect the success of local businesses. Staff retention, the cost of doing business, and the introduction of extra legislative burdens are key issues facing businesses in general. Although these challenges will continue to grow, the Costcutter team believe the best way of counteracting them is to be proactive and operate to the highest of standards.

The hugely popular Urban Sips coffee brand from Barry Group. “Our aim is to concentrate on building relationships with our customers and securing a future for them, while ensuring that they are profitable in the long run,” explains Jim Barry. Another considerable challenge is the growing uncertainty around Brexit. “We are fully engaged with all of our supply chain partners to ensure as seamless an outcome as possible for all of our customers,” concludes Niall Hartnett, Buying Director. “We will continue to take key challenges head on, grow our business, build our brand and remain an outstanding player in the sector.”


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A new dawn for Daybreak Thomas Morrison, Head of Retail, Musgrave Wholesale Partners, talks us through a hugely positive 2019 for the Daybreak brand, which saw the roll-out of its new store design. THOMAS Morrison, Head of Retail, Musgrave Wholesale Partners, explains how 2019 was a super year for the Daybreak retail brand, with the roll-out of its new store design, which included the launch of some very exciting retail brands. How did your brand perform in 2019? 2019 has been yet another very successful year for Daybreak, with a key focus for us being the roll-out of our new store design. We have listened to what consumers want from a convenience store and designed a completely new shopping experience. This new offer is surprising and delighting shoppers with a fresher, healthier, on-trend offer and, most importantly, is driving exceptional growth in store sales and profitability. To date, 55 stores have moved to our new store design, and its proven success has also helped us attract record numbers of new retailers to the brand. How do you go about attracting new retailers to join your brand? We have been very successful at attracting new retailers because we are able to prove that Daybreak can grow their sales and profit. The cornerstone of our success is the experience of our team and their dedication to developing retailers’ businesses. This is led by our Business Development Managers (BDMs), all of whom come from a retail background and use their extensive retail and foodservice knowledge to offer practical business support. Our BDMs work with retailers to build annual business plans tailored to each store, which focus on benchmarking their sales, costs and profit against real budgets and KPIs. We then meet store owners every month to review progress on implementing this plan.

We also support retailers in developing the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in today’s retail landscape. For example, we have a team of fresh food advisors to support with staff training, legal compliance, achieving the highest food standards and driving food-to-go profits. They also run regular workshops in our demo kitchens to develop retailers’ food expertise. Transition to the Daybreak group is also made as painless as possible by our dedicated Development Team, who fully support stores through the process, ensuring that stores trade successfully right through the development project. When you can prove to retailers the real difference we make to their bottom line, it becomes a lot easier to convince them that Daybreak is the smart choice.

What advantages do your retail partners enjoy? Daybreak brings all the advantages of partnership with Musgrave, the largest retail and foodservice operator on the island of Ireland. Musgrave is a 100% Irish, family-owned business, which has been supporting independent retailers for over 140 years, so we know better than anyone what they want from a retail partnership. That includes access to a world class supply solution. We have the widest ambient, chilled and frozen product range, covering your entire business needs, all delivered on one truck to save you time and reduce your labour and administration costs. As Ireland’s largest buying group, we also offer retailers an unbeatable overall value proposition. That includes excellent


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Thomas Morrison, Head of Retail, Musgrave Wholesale Partners. everyday pricing across all the product categories important to a retailer’s business. Added to that are regular deep cut offers, including monthly promotions, Daybreak exclusives and ‘WOW’ sales days. We offer retailers affinity deals that deliver real savings on operational costs like insurance. We work closely with retailers to drive efficiencies in their business and reduce waste. Daybreak also provides the strength of a brand, with targeted marketing activity which focuses on driving retailers’ sales. That includes digital marketing leadership through creative and impactful campaigns, like our recent ‘From Dusk Till Daybreak’ Halloween campaign that had over one million video views on social media. All of this supports Daybreak retailers achieving above industry average profit levels.

that creates standout in-store. 9 Grams is our exclusive gourmet coffee brand. We have also launched an exclusive icecream brand, with fun flavours and a distinctive design, called Lickety Split. These brands have been embraced by shoppers and driven retailer profitability. In 2019, we also focused strongly on driving continuous improvements in store standards. For instance, we launched a new training and engagement calendar that really added practical value to retailers. This included a series of workshops in our Cork, Galway and Dublin demo kitchens, on topics like Food to Go technical skills and margin protection, which were very well received. We are also proud of the increased participation by our stores in EIQA, which reflects a commitment to delivering the highest standards.

How do you think the Irish grocery market changed in 2019? 2019 saw a continuation of some of the key trends shaping the convenience sector in recent years. People are eating out much more. The modern-day consumer not only wants a quick and convenient service, they want a much wider variety of food options and great value. They are also becoming more health conscious and are increasingly demanding healthier choices without having to sacrifice on taste. Daybreak has responded to these

market dynamics with the launch of our new store design, which places an increased emphasis on fresh food and healthier options. Convenience retailers are now effectively in competition with coffee shops and restaurants, so the quality of your food and drink offer, and indeed the overall retail experience, needs to meet the higher expectations of a more discerning consumer. You also need to keep your food offer interesting, which is why we launched a new seasonal NPD calendar. The most popular NPD lines this year included our range of healthier salads for summer and gluten free bakery treats. Consumers are also more socially conscious and hold brands to a higher ethical standard. At Musgrave, we are driving industry leading changes in this area through our group sustainability strategy, which includes a commitment to ensuring that our own brand packaging is recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025. In Daybreak, we have already moved to compostable coffee cups. What plans do you have in place for 2020? In 2019, we have proven that we have a winning formula and in 2020, we will focus on consolidating that success. In 2020, we will hold a national conference with Daybreak retailers, where we will outline our ambitious growth plans for the brand. Those plans will build on some of the themes outlined above, including an aggressive roll-out of our new store design and sub-brands, and a continuous development of our offer to meet the latest trends and changing consumer demand.

How many new stores joined Daybreak in 2019? We are enjoying strong growth in store numbers. 17 stores joined the Daybreak group in 2019 and a further 17 are expected to join in 2020. What were the other highlights of 2019 for you? As part of our refreshed store design, we introduced some exciting new brands which performed very strongly in 2019. Munch & Co., our deli brand, features a delicious signature menu, healthier options for breakfast, lunch and dinner, brought together with impactful signage

Munch & Co. is Daybreak’s new deli brand, featuring a delicious signature menu, healthier options for breakfast, lunch and dinner, brought together with impactful signage that creates standout in-store.


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Retail Groups Report

Tesco Ireland makes a real difference 2019 was a busy year at Tesco Ireland, with continued focus on serving Ireland’s shoppers a little better every day, under the guidance of Chief Executive, Kari Daniels. 2019 saw Tesco meet a host of new milestones across its business, including achieving standout CSR accreditations, quality product awards and workplace recognitions. Tesco Ireland continued to invest in the roll-out of its store refresh programme across the country and

announced exciting new partnerships that will carry on throughout the year ahead. A little help goes a long way “At Tesco, we believe that every little help makes a big difference. It drives what we do every day for our colleagues, in the communities where we operate, and for the breadth of customers we serve,” explains Tesco Ireland CEO, Kari Daniels. “It’s the heart of our CSR and sustainability approach, the Little Helps Plan, which sets out how Tesco will make a difference to the social and environmental challenges that matter most.” With over 13,000 employees across 151 stores, a distribution centre and head office based in Dublin, Tesco is one of Ireland’s largest private sector employers. “We know we can make the greatest contribution by focusing on our people, our products and our places,” the CEO explains.

Tesco Ireland becomes 250th member of 30% Club in Ireland. Pictured are (lr): Carol Andrews, 30% Club Ireland Country lead and Managing Director at BNY Mellon Ireland; and Kari Daniels, CEO, Tesco Ireland.

People “Our colleagues are our most important asset and we’re proud to empower them to be who they are at work. We want everyone to feel welcome at Tesco and are developing a diverse team that represents our evolving communities and a culture that builds self-esteem and celebrates our colleagues’ unique individualities,” Kari Daniels reveals. Tesco Ireland were ‘Bursting with Pride’ to be on board as lead sponsor of this year’s Dublin and Cork Pride festivals; partnerships that demonstrate the company’s ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion. In February, Tesco Ireland received the Great Place to Work accreditation for the second consecutive year and was acknowledged as one of only 13 Best Workplaces for Women in Ireland. “We believe in treating people with respect and giving everyone an opportunity to get on. We’re proud signatories of the Diversity Charter Ireland and in July we joined the 30% Club, which promotes female representation in business at leadership level,” Daniels notes. Community Tesco Ireland was the first Irish retailer to launch a national surplus food donations programme with FoodCloud and continues to work to donate surplus food from its stores to those in need in our communities. This year, that partnership reached a milestone donation of over 9m meals to 350+ community groups across Ireland since 2014. “At Tesco, we have no time for waste,” the CEO explains. “We believe it’s simply not right that perfectly edible surplus food should go to waste when there are people in our communities who need it.” As Tesco Ireland works towards realising its ambition that no good food will go to waste from its stores, this October the retailer announced a new


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Retail Groups Report suppliers on its packaging strategy and asked them to follow its lead to measure and act on plastic. Through membership of Repak, Tesco Ireland helps fund the recycling of the packaging the consumer buys in its stores and the company is a proud signatory of the Repak Packaging Plastics Pledge.

Jim O’Keeffe, MD, Retail Banking – AIB; with Kari Daniels, CEO Tesco Ireland; and Tomás Sercovich, BITCI; pictured as Tesco Ireland receives the Business in the Community Ireland Business Working Responsibly Mark. partnership with its 12 largest fresh food suppliers in Ireland that have committed to Target, Measure and Act on food waste. Tesco Ireland also continues to help local communities to thrive positively by reaching 15,000 local community projects to date through the Community Fund and the company was recognised for the success of the programme by winning a Chambers Ireland Award. 2019 saw the Community Fund reach a donation milestone of over €4m. Tesco staff and customers have now raised over €4.7m for its charity partner, Temple Street, since 2014. This charity partnership sees funds raised by Tesco colleagues, customers and Temple Street supporters used specifically to help the children’s hospital to purchase life-saving medical equipment for its patients. The most recent fundraising saw €128,000 collected around Halloween through the Trick or Treat events across all stores nationwide. In June, Tesco Ireland announced

an exciting new sponsorship with Swim Ireland and is proud to work with them to encourage communities across Ireland to get swimming as part of an active and healthy lifestyle.

Packaging Tesco Ireland’s target is to ensure they never use more packaging than is needed. Where needed, because it serves a clear purpose like reducing food waste or to protect a product in transit, they do their best to ensure that what they do use is from sustainable sources and where possible, goes on to be reused or recycled. The company has set challenging targets that will deliver a step change in how much plastic waste it generates, as Kari Daniels explains: “By year end, we will end the use of hard to recycle materials (e.g. PVC and Polystyrene) from our own brand packaging and by 2025 all our packaging will be fully recyclable, all our paper and board will be 100% sustainable and we will halve packaging weight in our business.” This year, Tesco Ireland became the first Irish retailer to introduce innovative, fully detectable black packaging trays, making 448 tonnes of plastic now recyclable. In October, the company Staff from Tesco Ballincollig get in the spirit for Trick or engaged all Treat for Temple Street.

Environment Tesco Ireland has the ambition to be a zero-carbon business by 2050. Since 2016, the company has made significant energy efficiency upgrades to the fridge, lighting and heating systems across its stores. All the electricity used in its operations is from 100% renewable sources. Tesco Ireland became one of 50 leading Irish companies to have signed the Business in the Community Low Carbon Pledge - to halve its direct carbon footprint between now and 2030.

Tomás Sercovich, BITCI, with Geoff Byrne, Chief Operating Officer, Tesco Ireland, as they sign the Carbon Pledge. The company has also invested in a suite of energy measures to cut energy usage. This investment, combined with a focused energy-management strategy, has delivered an overall reduction in electricity consumption by 24% over five years. “We’re proud of our commitment to sustainability and CSR, acknowledged through achieving the Business in the Community Ireland Business Working Responsibly Mark,” Kari Daniels concludes. “This accreditation is Ireland’s leading standard for sustainability and CSR and recognises our work to build a more sustainable business for the future. By achieving the Mark, we’ve proved that we’re not just talking about sustainability, but taking real and meaningful action in our business to bring about positive change for the future.”


62|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Retail Groups Report

Aldi: 20 years in Ireland Aldi marked its 20th birthday in Ireland with a year of sustained growth, a record market share and multiple award wins. ALDI Ireland’s 20th anniversary year has been a monumental success, bringing with it extensive growth, widespread expansion, a long list of award wins and continued support for Irish suppliers and local communities. Month after month in 2019, Aldi reemerged as the fastest-growing retailer in Ireland, achieving a record-breaking 12.5% market share in October (Source: Kantar Worldpanel, for the 12 weeks to November 3, 2019). Facilitating this extensive demand from customers, Aldi opened three new stores this year in Kinnegad, Co. Westmeath, Royal Canal Park, Dublin, and most recently, its 140th store in Tramore, Co. Waterford, on December 5. Investment in existing stores has also been a top priority as the successful roll-out of Aldi’s Project Fresh €60m store upgrade programme continued. In addition to a 300 m²expansion of its Dungarvan store, 28 stores received an award-winning Project Fresh store revamp, providing customers with a more efficient, hassle-free shopping experience.

Aldi’s Padraig Barry (back left) and Foróige’s Dave O’Reilly (back right), pictured with participants from the 2019 Aldi Foróige Youth Citizenship Awards.

goods this year, Aldi’s partnerships with Irish producers across the country have been key to its success. Grow With Aldi saw the business invest a further €500,000 into its supplier development programme, bringing its total investment up to €1m since its inception in 2018. Supporting Irish Giving up-and-coming artisan Irish Set to sell over €700m worth of Irish food and drink producers the unique chance to have their products stocked nationally, over 70 producers have had their products listed so far, with 10 producers also going on to win 12-month contracts to supply all 140 stores. 2019 saw Joanne Schiller, Buying Assistant with Aldi Ireland, and Aldi commit to TV presenter Lisa Cannon launch the 2019 Irish Cancer several new longSociety Colour Dash 5K. term deals with

key Irish suppliers, as well as providing them with opportunities to supply the business internationally. North County Dublin grower, Flynn’s Tomatoes, has won a new five-year contract worth €14m with Aldi Ireland to supply its 140 stores. Waterford’s Blackwater Distillery secured a contract worth over €3m to stock its award-winning premium gins in Aldi stores across Australia, the UK and Ireland, while Dublin bakery, Broderick’s, secured a €6.5m contract to supply Aldi stores in the UK and Ireland. Looking to continue offering its staff some of the best pay and benefits in the industry, Aldi affirmed its position as one of Ireland’s highest paying retailers this year by becoming one of the first to commit to paying the Living Wage Technical Group’s rate. To support its ongoing growth and expansion in Ireland, Aldi also confirmed it was seeking to recruit and train more than 500 new store employees throughout 2019. Award Wins This year, the superior quality of Aldi’s products was once again recognised at a


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Retail Groups Report

Bernard Broderick, Director of Broderick’s, and Peter Bough, Aldi Ireland Buying Director, pictured at the announcement of Brockerick’s €6.5m contract to supply Aldi stores in the UK and Ireland. host of national and international awards ceremonies. Aldi’s Specially Selected Irish Angus Fillet Steak was crowned the Best Fillet Steak in the World at the World Steak Challenge 2019, while it also had a strong showing at the 2019 Great Taste Awards, with four of its own-brand products winning the most coveted ‘three gold stars’ - more than any other supermarket in Ireland. A highly successful year for the retailer, Aldi also celebrated 30 Blas na hÉireann Awards, 40 Irish Quality Food and Drink Awards and 24 Free From Awards. Not only honoured for its exceptional range of food and drink, Aldi was also ranked as Ireland’s most trusted supermarket by the RepTrak Study, as voted for by Irish shoppers.

Supporting Local Communities A key focus of Aldi’s corporate responsibility and sponsorship programme this year was on promoting healthy, active lifestyles for Ireland’s youth. The Aldi Play Rugby sticker promotion saw Irish primary schools offered the chance to win one of two €50,000 prizes to be spent on sporting facilities, while runners-up could win other cash prizes or a training session hosted by renowned Irish rugby legend, Paul O’Connell. What’s more, every primary school that returned a completed poster received an Aldi Play Rugby Kit. The third year of the Aldi Community Games was a roaring success, with over 175,000 children across 600 communities taking part in hundreds of events, with

Rugby legend Paul O’Connell is pictured with IRFU Sticker Competition winners from Wexford.

two final national festivals hosted by the University of Limerick. 2019 was also an important year for Aldi’s partnership with leading youth organisation Foróige, which rang in the 50th anniversary of its Youth Citizenship Programme by achieving its highest participation numbers ever. Over 14,000 young people took part in the Aldi Foróige Youth Citizenship Awards to showcase their community action projects involving social inclusion, climate change, and many other important topics. Aldi has helped the Irish Cancer Society raise over €1m since 2016 and this year marked a monumental step forward in its support, with the retailer agreeing a new two-year sponsorship of the annual 5km Colour Dash run. The Community Grants initiative saw hundreds of regional charities nominated for €500 donations by local stores, helping charity staff and volunteers to make a difference in their communities. Aldi’s valued partnership with FoodCloud continued, with local charities across Ireland receiving donations of excess food throughout the year. The business has donated nearly 1.6m meals since partnering with the charity. Sustainability In 2019, Aldi continued to make sustainable business practices a key priority by announcing several initiatives to reduce its carbon footprint. As part of a long-term plastic reduction plan, Aldi committed to ensure 100% of its own-label packaging will be recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2022 and to reduce all packaging by 25% by the end of 2023. Working to deliver these goals, the retailer banned undetectable black plastic packaging from its fruit and vegetables range and fresh beef range earlier this year, removing 8.15m non-recyclable black plastic trays annually. In October, Aldi went on to announce the introduction of three new sustainable bag options which will remove 12.5m unnecessary single-use plastic bags annually from circulation. Finally, efforts to support more transparent fishing practices led to Aldi signing up to the Ocean Disclosure Project, publishing a comprehensive review of the environmental impact of its fisheries. Looking Ahead Reflecting on a highly successful 20th anniversary year, Aldi looks forward to further successes in 2020, to expanding its operations through new store openings and Project Fresh redesigns and continuing to offer customers the best quality Irish food and drink at marketleading prices.


64|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Retail Groups Report

Lidl celebrates milestones in 2019

2019 saw Lidl open its 200th store on the island of Ireland, as well as unveiling its state-of-the-art energy efficient distribution centre. 2019 was a superb year for Lidl Ireland, which opened its 200th store on the island of Ireland in Tullamore, Co. Offaly, in July, bringing the total number of Lidl employees on the island of Ireland to over 5,200. Lidl now welcomes over two million customers through its doors every week. Earlier this year, Lidl became the first Irish retailer to offer customers in-store recycling stations nationwide to reduce packaging waste bought in-store. This market-leading initiative offers Lidl’s almost two million weekly customers the opportunity to remove any unwanted recyclable packaging and to recycle it free-of-charge in-store once they have completed their shopping. September saw Lidl becoming the first retailer in Ireland to introduce reusable fruit and veg bags across all 162 stores nationwide. In relation to loose fruit and vegetables, Lidl has introduced numerous additional loose options, bringing the overall loose lines to approximately 20% of the range. Lidl Ireland’s sustainability strategy reaches further than just their products. The environment forms an important part of Lidl’s expansion strategy, with each new store and major refurbishment project built with sustainability in mind. Investing in long-term initiatives ensures Lidl performs as a leading Irish retailer today and future-proofs its growing presence in Ireland for years to come. Lidl has invested €1m in solar power installations across its store network. Solar photovoltaic systems generate approximately 25% of a store’s energy requirements. Lidl Ireland has also installed electric vehicle charging-points at all new stores and across all major store refurbishment projects, enabling customers to charge their electric vehicles free-of-charge whilst they shop.

Energy efficient distribution centre Most recently, Lidl officially opened their 58,000m² Distribution Centre in Newbridge, with energy efficiency a key feature. Lidl invested €1m in its football-pitchsized rooftop solar panel array, the largest on any building in the Republic of Ireland. The solar panels will reduce the centre’s carbon output JP Scally, Managing Director Lidl Ireland and by some 473 tonnes Northern Ireland, and Minister for Finance, Paschal annually, the equivalent Donohoe TD, pictured at the official opening of Lidl’s of taking 175 cars off Newbridge Distribution Centre in Newbridge, Co. the road every year. Over Kildare. 25% of the new facility’s energy requirements will landfill’; now be generated by solar power. • Roof-mounted rainwater tanks collecting enough water to fill Other sustainability initiatives at the approximately 12,000 baths per centre include: annum; • ISO 50001 certification, a globally • Heat recovery from refrigeration and recognised standard for bestonly natural refrigerants; practice energy management; • A commitment to ‘zero waste to The centre also boasts several important biodiversity features, including a 9,390 square metre wildflower meadow, a 9,960 square metre woodland area with 5,700 native trees to Ireland, beehives, bat boxes and insect hotels. The opening of the new distribution centre is spearheading even greater efficiencies, which the supermarket is giving back to customers in the form of July 2019 saw Lidl opening its 200th store on the cost savings. Effective from January 2020, Lidl customers island of Ireland in Tullamore, Co. Offaly.


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Retail Groups Report supporter of needs are prioritised, including their women’s sport overall sense of wellbeing. in the country through the LGFA Current employee benefits provided by Lidl Ireland include; #SeriousSupport campaign. To date, it has • Paid Maternity and Paternity Leave: invested €4m in Lidl Ireland is the only supermarket to offer paid maternity as well as the partnership and donated paternity leave to all employees across the country. more than 11,000 • Guaranteed minimum of 30jerseys, balls and equipment hour contracts: Like many retail businesses, a high proportion to schools. This of employees are on part-time summer, four clubs took part in contracts for various reasons, Amelia-Lily Nwanguma, aged five, from Rialto, Dublin, from flexibility to operational the OneGoodClub pictured with Minister for Communications, Climate pilot with their requirements. Lidl recently offered Action and Environment, Richard Bruton TD, and JP Scally, charity partner, contracts with a minimum of 30 Managing Director, Lidl Ireland, launching Lidl’s new inhours to all store and warehouse Jigsaw, the store recycling stations. National Centre employees to facilitate their changing needs. for Youth Mental Health, offering selected will benefit from a price reduction on 500 • Employee Assistance Programme: clubs the opportunity to support all products, following a price reduction on A free, confidential counselling members to engage in activities that over 250 products in the past six months. service is offered by Lidl to can promote their mental health and employees through Laya wellbeing. Following the successful pilot, Reformulation project Healthcare’s Employee Assistance they will be launching OneGoodClub Earlier this year, Lidl announced that Programme. It offers support to across the country in the New Year. over 850 own-brand products (over Lidl employees and their families 30% of the product range) are currently by providing immediate help and Employee benefits being assessed as they commit to a 20% guidance in managing whatever In November, Lidl Ireland, who were reduction in added sugar content, as well work or personal issues they are the first major nationwide employer to as reducing salt levels in accordance with facing. commit to paying the Living Wage in best practice standards, by the end of • Paid Volunteering: Lidl provides 2015, made a further commitment to its 2020. all employees with the opportunity employees to match the latest rate of Food categories such as breakfast to take part in a paid Volunteer €12.30 as recommended by the Living cereals, spreads, sauces, and sweet Day each year. Employees are Wage Technical Group. The change will confectionery will be a major focus of the encouraged to spend a day benefit 15% of employees across Ireland, added sugar reduction, and Lidl Ireland volunteering with charities in their while all other employees currently earn will be reviewing approximately 350 own local communities. in excess of the new Living Wage. brand products in order to reach this • Comprehensive Training The Living Wage is an independently sugar target. assessed and recommended rate of Programmes: Employees benefit The reduction of salt first focuses from extensive training and income considered necessary to have on food categories that are consumed development opportunities which a socially acceptable standard of living. on a regular basis and generally make have enabled over 40% of Lidl’s Lidl’s continued, proactive commitment up a large share of the daily salt intake, current store management to to paying the Living Wage is one of a including ready meals, soups, pizzas, number of initiatives introduced to all progress through the company, crisps, cakes and meat products. Over 4,300 employees across the country in having initially started as customer 500 of Lidl Ireland’s own brand products assistants. recent years. As the company continues will be reviewed to reach this salt target. • Pension contributions after one to steadily grow in the market, it continues to share its success with year with the company. Positive commitment to Ireland all employees, as well as creating an • Paid health insurance for salaried Lidl’s commitment to positive business employees. environment where colleagues’ holistic practices is evident through its partnership with Jigsaw, the National Centre for Youth Mental Health. The company is in the second year of its three-year charity partnership. Lidl has pledged to fundraise €1m for Jigsaw over the three years, and also to raise awareness of youth mental health nationwide, encouraging all customers and colleagues to be One Good Adult – a campaign for adults to support a young person in their lives by being there to Lidl invested €1m in its rooftop solar panel array at its Distribution Centre, listen and support. the largest on any building in the Republic of Ireland. Lidl continues to be the biggest


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Retail Groups Report

A Fresh approach to retailing Fresh the Good Food Market offers a very different brand and business model from traditional convenience retailers. FRESH The Good Food Market (Fresh) is a high quality grocery and delicatessen supermarket group with a distinct product range from around the country and internationally. Its mission is to provide customers with a combination of fresh, quality and authentic food for now and take-home grocery, as well as a range of premium wines and craft beers from around the world. Since the company started 13 years ago, Fresh has made a conscious effort to differentiate its brand and business model as far from traditional convenience retailing as possible. Its stores feature many own brand concepts and provide comfortable instore casual dining areas for customers to enjoy. Fresh has created its own brand coffee, The Fresh Caffe, and fresh juice concepts, deli offer, gelateria, Wine Barrel off-licence and its pioneering hot food concept, The Fresh Kitchen. The company now operates seven stores across the Greater Dublin area and employs over 300 staff from 22 countries. Fresh has been internationally recognised as having redefined the very concept of the convenience store and being innovators in ‘food-to-go’ A shopping environment like no other Its store design, highly original product mix, and unique approach to foodservice and technology has resulted in a shopping environment unlike any other. Fresh has developed many

The latest store in the Fresh the Good Food Market portfolio is the stunning shop at Dublin’s prestigious Capital Dock. innovative approaches to ensure that the experience and design remains unequalled. These elements include: • • •

Expertly blending foodservice with retail to produce a totally different store experience; None of the branded concessions that one may typically see in a convenience store in Ireland; A changing food offer throughout the day, offering all day dining and in-store eating, gourmet take-home meals, and world cuisine themed evenings.

Capital Dock store Its latest store is in Dublin’s Capital Dock, which opened in October 2019. The opening of the prestigious Capital Dock store follows an amazing year of awards for Fresh in 2018, when the group won: •

• •

The North American Convenience Store (NACS) ‘International Convenience Retailer of the Year’ 2018; IGD ‘Small Store of the Year’ 2018; Retail Excellence Ireland ‘Supermarket Group of the Year’ 2018, and ‘Top 5 Store in Ireland’.

Fresh is already one of the most Ultimately, Fresh has carved a new niche benchmarked stores in Dublin by Irish for itself in the sector and has firmly put and international retailers, with many Dublin on the map as the world centre for retail research groups such as global excellence in convenience retailing. food and grocery experts IGD featuring Fresh The Good Food Market as “the store group to visit in Dublin”. Fresh believes strongly in supporting Irish food and beverage producers. The company’s philosophy is to cut the market entry barriers that many of these businesses face when trying to get shelf space. Fresh is known for introducing many new Irish food and beverage The Fresh Kitchen, a pioneering hot food concept brands to the market in from Fresh the Good Food Market. record time.


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• Private Investigation Services If you are buying a security service your provider must be licensed even if their primary business is not security. Electricians, Property and Facilities Management Companies and others providing security services must be licensed. Using unlicensed providers puts your business at risk as you could:

• Face Prosecution

• Invalidate your insurance cover

• Compromise the safety of your staff and customers Make sure that your security provider is licensed with the PSA visit

www.psa.gov.ie


68|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Forecourt Focus: News Maxol completes investment of over €5m in three Dublin sites THE Maxol Group has completed an investment of more than €5m across three of its Dublin service stations: Maxol Dolphin’s Barn, Maxol Ballinteer and Maxol Sandyford. This is part of a nationwide strategy that is seeing sites across the country being refurbished and enhanced with improved services, with many adding upgraded delis and new food concepts, serving hot and cold food offerings. Maxol Dolphin’s Barn has undergone an extensive refurbishment costing €4m, which has seen a complete redevelopment of the entire site and the creation of 60 new construction jobs and 20 full and part time retail jobs for the area. The impressive site now includes an enhanced range of services, including the new Maxol Deli, with seating for 24 customers, and the introduction of Taste of Mexi-Co, an authentic Mexican food concept that takes inspiration from the street food trend. Maxol Sandyford has been transformed Ronan McDermott of Maxol Dolphins Barn and Brian Donaldson, CEO, the following an investment of almost €500,000, Maxol Group. with the site now offering the new Maxol central to our offering and are real drivers of footfall to each Deli, seating for 18 customers, free customer WiFi and the of our 70 company-owned service stations in the country,” introduction of Joe de Frango, a new authentic Portuguese noted Brian Donaldson, CEO of The Maxol Group.“Household chicken concept. essentials and quality food that offer good value are at the An investment of €750,000 saw Maxol Ballinteer’s retail heart of what we offer and improved services in-store such space double in size, significantly enhancing the grocery range as our new Maxol Deli, our exclusive Rosa Coffee, and our on offer for household daily essentials, a new Maxol Deli, Rosa fantastic new food concepts, Mexi-co and Joe de Frango, are coffee and new bakery range. proving extremely attractive in our new modern retail concept.” “Convenience top-up shopping and food have become

Applegreen welcomes Mayor of Fingal to new Santry forecourt APPLEGREEN plc continues to expand its network of convenience shopping, food and forecourt operations, with the opening of the new Santry service area just outside Dublin Airport on the Swords Road, bringing 50 new jobs to the local area. The Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Eoghan O’Brien, was in attendance to officially open the new Applegreen, alongside Aaron Duggan, Head of Service Area, Regional Manager Lisa Brown and the Applegreen Santry team, led by manager, Matt Farrell. Applegreen Santry is open 24 hours and includes a Lavazza Café, café seating area and a relaxing upstairs lounge with flight information screens. Burger King and the Bakewell café also offer a range of Irish made savoury and sweet treats, along with amenities and services, including free WiFi, an off-licence, ATM, toilet facilities, car wash and the fuelService app for disabled drivers. “We are delighted to now be open at Santry, Swords Road and to create 50 jobs for the local community,” noted Aaron Duggan, Head of Service Area Retail and Operations. “This new service area offers a wide range of food-to-go and eat-in options from our Food Hall, as well as a Lavazza café for your favourite baristamade coffee. Santry facilities also include fuel, convenience retail and a premium car wash. With Dublin Airport flight Arrivals and Departures information screens and a quiet lounge area, Applegreen Santry is the perfect place to wait before collecting friends and family from the airport.”

Pictured at the official opening of the new Applegreen service station on the Swords Road in Santry are: Lisa Browne, Regional Manager; Cllr Eoghan O’Brien, Mayor of Fingal; Matt Farrell, Site Manager; and Aaron Duggan, Head of Service Area.


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Forecourt Focus: News Circle K unveils two new stores CIRCLE K has officially opened two newly redeveloped service stations, one in Co. Kerry and another in Co. Meath. Anne Mac’s Circle K service station, located on the Tralee Road, Moanmore, Castleisland, Co. Kerry, was officially opened by Paralympic hopeful Jordan Lee, with a wide range of special offers available in-store, including a free pastry with any Simply Great Coffee. Another Paralympic hopeful, Kerrie Leonard, carried out the official opening of the Circle K Fairyhouse Motors service station, located on the Fairyhouse Road, Newtown, Ratoath, Co. Meath. Declan McGaley, owner, Anne Mac’s Circle K in Castleisland, said, “It’s great to be bringing more quality services to Castleisland in partnership with Circle K, including the extensive food offering at our brand-new deli.” The owner of Circle K Ratoath, Terry Brady, said, “We’re delighted to relaunch the store at Fairyhouse Motors and to continue offering our Cutting the cake at the official opening of the new Circle K store in local Meath customers the very best available on the market. As part of the store’s redevelopment, Ratoath, Co. Meath, are (l-r): Paulina Kucyznaksa, Store Manager; owners Terry and Cheryl Brady; Kerrie Leonard, Team Ireland Paralympic Athlete; we are looking forward to providing more quality and owner Kelvin Brady. services to Ratoath, such as our extensive food offering at our brand-new deli.” Both stores will feature Circle K’s extensive offering, stores will also now feature a full, fresh and healthy deli, with including miles and Circle K’s own Simply Great Coffee, and an extensive food offering, making it easy for customers to the hugely popular frozen soft drinks Froster. The newly fitted enjoy something delicious at any time of the day.

Jordan Lee, Paralympic hopeful, and store owner Declan McGaley are pictured with staff members celebrating the opening of Annie Mac’s Circle K, Castleisland, Co. Kerry.

Rebel Whopper hits Applegreen THE Rebel Whopper has joined the Burger King sandwich line-up at Applegreen as it launches in 25 countries across Europe. The new patties, supplied by The Vegetarian Butcher, are plant-based and offer the same great quality you’d expect from any Burger King sandwich. The main ingredients are sustainable soy, wheat, vegetable oil, herbs and onion.


70|Retail News|December 2019|www.retailnews.ie

On The Vine

A year in wine! Jean Smullen looks back over the year in the wine trade, including the continued rise of Spanish wine on the Irish market. THE current reality of the wine market in Ireland is that volume sales are continuing to show a marginal decrease. The 2018 Drinks Ireland Wine Report, released in September, showed that volume sales of wine fell from 9m cases to 8.9m during 2018. The decrease in wine sales continued in 2019; MAT offtrade sales figures for wine, show that volume declined in the 12 months to November 2019 by -1.5%. However, it is heartening to see that during the same period, value sales marginally increased by €300k. This was driven by a small increase in the average selling price to €8.15 (per 75cl bottle). The average bottle price increased for all country of origin categories this year, with exception of France, which showed a decline in sales of 10c per bottle. New Zealand and Argentina showed positive average pricing and over-performed in 2019, whereas prices for South African and German wines were well below the average market rates. The wine offering from both Lidl and Aldi was extremely competitive this year and their seasonal wine sales were very positive. Nielsen Scantrack figures to November 2019 show the discounters’ value share increased during the 12-month period from 23% to 25% of the

market; at the same time the multiples held their volume share of 47%. Overall though, the story of the wine market in Ireland is still very much about wine brands, which continue to drive wine sales in terms of their performance. The top 20 wine brands accounted for 48% of value sales in 2019, against private label’s share of 14% of the total off trade market. It’s interesting to note that sales of private label wines showed a decline of 10% this year. Figures to November 2019 show Chile remains to the fore with a 23% market share, driven by the top two Chilean wine brands, Santa Rita (Gilbeys With Bibendum) and Concha y Toro, who between them account for a 47% share of the Chilean category, with Santa Rita leading the way on 29%. Australia follows with 15% of the market, with McGuigan (Barry & Fitzwilliam) and Wolf Blass (Findlater & Co.) driving sales of Australian wine and accounting for 36% of sales in the Aussie wine category. Sales of French and Italian wine in the off trade are very fragmented, with various SKU’s driving the sector. France has 14% market share and Italy has 10%, according to the Scantrack figures. Spain, currently in fourth place, has

Viña Santa Rita: Ireland’s biggest wine brand for the fifth year in a row.


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On The Vine a 12% share of the off-trade market with two key brands driving volume sales of Spanish wines; Torres (Findlater & Co) and Campo Viejo (IDL/Pernod Ricard) claim a 25% share of the category. New Zealand USA and Argentina all performed well, with strong brands positively contributing to their respective market share. Villa Maria (Barry & Fitzwilliam) and Oyster Bay (Delegat Wine Estate) accounted for 41% of sales in the New Zealand category. Barefoot/Gallo

McGuigan Black Label Shiraz, one of the top performing wines on the Irish market. (Comans Beverages) are driving sales of wine from the USA (California) with a 52% share of the category and last but not least, Argentina continues to power ahead with a 4% share of the off trade sector, driven by sales of Dona Paula (Gilbeys With Bibendum) and Las Moras Dada (Comans Beverages) accounting for 47% of all sales in the Argentine category (all figures sourced from Nielsen Scantrack, November 2019). The Spanish invasion The prize for the best generic marketing campaign for 2019 goes to Wines of Spain. The Spanish Commercial Office and Wines of Spain have been working extremely hard for a number of years to raise awareness and increase sales of Spanish wine on this market. Led by Sara

Crespo Garcia at the Spanish Embassy in Dublin, the years of hard work and investment have now paid off. Wines of Spain were very active on social media and very involved in the organisation of trade and consumer wine tastings and regional specific events. As a result, Spanish wine was one of the success stories of 2019. It should be noted that some of the regional events were individually funded, including the Rioja Tutored Tasting and the Ribera del Duero Open Pour event, which were

Villa Maria is the leading New Zealand wine brand on the Irish market organised independently. However, with Wines of Spain initiatives such as the third edition of Spanish Wine Week (April 2019) and the sixth edition of Sherry Week (November 2019), as well as many other individual promotions through education trade events, Spanish wine was very visible on the Irish market this year. The strong growth of Spain continued in 2019, especially in the off trade, which now accounts for 82% of all wine sales here. Nielsen Scantrack figures to November 2019 show that the volume and value share for Spain grew in 2019. Spain achieved 12.05% (+2.10%) of values sales on a MAT basis to November 2019 and 12.28% (+0.2%) volume sales.

The figures from the Drinks Ireland 2018 Wine Market Report are even more positive for Spanish, as they suggest that Spain overtook France and Italy in 2018 in terms of volume sales, having increased their volume share of the Irish market to 13% (Source: 2018 Drinks Ireland Wine Market Report, September 2019). Congratulations to everyone involved. 2020 trade tasting season The 2020 trade tasting season will begin on Monday, 1000 Stories, January 13, with the launched by 2020 New Zealand Concha y Toro’s Wine Fair- New Californian Zealand in a Glass, winery, is made at the Radisson from Zinfandel Blu Hotel in Golden grapes. Lane, Dublin 8. The following day (Tuesday, January 14) at the same venue, the 2020 The French Wines Discoveries Fair will see 35 French producers, all of whom are seeking representation, heading for Dublin to do business. On January 23, 2020, Cassidy Wines will be highlighting their Australian Portfolio of Wines, which includes Tyrrell Wines, Yalumba and Jim Barry at a trade tasting in Dublin. Portfolio tastings in February include Gilbeys with Bibendum (February 10), Tindal Wine Merchants (February 17) and Classic Drinks (February 18). Details of these Doùa Paula retains its and many other position as the events are in the number one wine diary: https:// Argentine wine jeansmullen.com/ brand in Ireland.


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Shelf Life ALDI Ireland has been recognised as ‘Supermarket of the Year’ at the Whisky Magazine Awards, held in at the Iveagh Garden Hotel in Dublin. Aldi’s whiskey range was celebrated for both its excellent quality and diversity. Aldi’s most recent addition, Cork-based Ardfallen Whiskey, is proving to be a real favourite with customers because of its delicate triple-distilled taste. Impressively, having only launched earlier this year, the whiskey has already taken home two bronze medals at this year’s Blas na hÉireann and Irish Quality Food and Drink Awards. AURIVO recently hosted a 5km beach walk in Enniscrone Co. Sligo as part of its Workplace Wellbeing Week, in association with Aurivo’s charity partner of the year. Croí. As part of its Workplace Wellbeing Week, Aurivo also hosted a number of events including workshops on mindfulness and financial health, healthy breakfasts, charity cycling in Homeland Stores and health screening carried out by nurses from Croí. Throughout the year, Aurivo employees, members and customers have been fundraising for the ‘Courtyard Apartments’ at Croí House, which have been specifically designed for short-term stays, to allow family members to be as close as possible to loved ones who are in hospital for cardiac or stroke care in University Hospital Galway. FOXPAK Flexibles Ltd, pioneers in sustainable flexible packaging, have launched Ireland’s first digitally printed coffee pouch made from compostable materials, in collaboration with PS Coffee Roasters. “Now we can offer our customers top quality coffee in a gorgeous practical bag that makes sense for the environment,” noted Simon McCormack, PS Coffee (left) with Hugo Young, Foxpak Flexibles Ltd. TALLAGHT based Buymie, which claims to do for retail what ‘Deliveroo’ does for restaurants, was nominated in the New Frontiers category in The Irish Times Innovations Awards. The Buymie format involves customers using the app to order grocery and household items from large retailers such as Lidl and Tesco and have their items delivered in as little as one hour by their very own personal Buymie shopper. For retailers, it offers a pre-built digital platform and the opportunity to plug into the on-demand grocery delivery market using a shared logistics network, thereby removing the need for large, up-front investment. Buymie CEO, Devan Hughes is pictured.

ESTRELLA Damm is the latest big hitter in a long line of drinks brands to be added to the Counterpoint Ireland portfolio. The Spanish beer giant is already a big hit internationally and is expected to make major waves on the Irish market in the coming year. Premium drinks supplier Counterpoint kicked things off by introducing the brand to Ireland’s top media with a Spanish themed bash in super cool gallery, Atelier Maser, setting the tone for what’s to come in 2020. Drinks suppliers are catching on to the fact that in such a crowded market, they need to offer more than just sales and they need to invest in bringing brands to life for consumers. CHRISTMAS FM, the hugely popular radio station which raises hundreds of thousands of euro for deserving charities every year, returned to the airwaves on November 28. This year, Christmas FM’s premier FM sponsors are Cadbury, Coca-Cola and An Post. As the running of the radio station is funded by sponsorship, this means that 100% of donations raised by Christmas FM will be passed to the chosen charity. In 2019, Christmas FM wants to “press play” on over 850 days of life changing programmes at Barretstown, rebuilding the lives of seriously ill children. Pictured are Garvan Rigby, CoFounder, Christmas FM; Gordon D’Arcy, former Irish rugby player & Barretstown ambassador; Dee Ahearn, CEO, Barretstown; Garrett Bridgeman, Managing Director, An Post Mails & Parcels; and Walter Hegarty, Co-Founder, Christmas FM. FAMILY owned butchers Dublin Meat Company has announced the launch of its Fit Food Vending solution. Built for every environment, such as offices, gyms, schools, hospitals, colleges, factories, train stations and airports, the machines come packed with nutritious Fit Food Ready Meals, all microwaveable in four minutes. Fit Food Ready Meals come in 11 different flavours, are clean, macro friendly, low calorie, MSG free and are made exclusively for Dublin Meat Company. Nine of the 11 options are gluten free. Fit Food vending machines are currently being used in Ryanair offices, Beaumont Hospital, St Michael’s School in Ballsbridge as well as Salesforce offices. BWG Group has agreed terms to acquire Heaney Meats Catering Co. Limited, a large supplier of premium quality meat products to the foodservice sector in Ireland. The transaction is subject to approval from the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, and follows on from BWG’s acquisition of Corrib Food Products and 4 Acres Wholesale in 2018. Heaney Meats specialises in the preparation and distribution of premium quality beef, lamb, poultry, pork and bacon to the foodservice sector and will continue to be led by founders, Shayne and Kenneth Heaney. “Heaney Meats is a long established and very progressive business that we have successfully partnered with over many years. The business will be a great addition to BWG and will further broaden our expanding offering to the foodservice sector,” noted Leo Crawford, Group CEO, BWG Group.


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Retail News December 2019  

Retail News, is Ireland’s longest established FMCG B2B magazine. It has been around for over 60 years, from the birth of the supermarket, th...

Retail News December 2019  

Retail News, is Ireland’s longest established FMCG B2B magazine. It has been around for over 60 years, from the birth of the supermarket, th...

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