At this morning’s trading meeting we talked about motivating our retail customers to promote for profit. Our current trade promotional leaflet contains well over 150 special grocery, confectionery and drinks offers, with our offer price and suggested retail prices. Beyond the free point of sale kit, nowhere do we give a reason for promoting through to consumers. Do our customers see our offers as buying opportunities or selling opportunities? Shouldn’t we be providing background information – like market size and trends, TV and media spends. Retailers have so little time to pick up this kind of information in trade magazines.

Some brand extensions simply don’t work. The Rolo chilled dessert is a personal favourite and I have campaigned for a larger tub for some time. But, having sampled Rolo Split with its tasteless caramel pieces recently, this is a move too far.

Mintel reports sales of healthy biscuits containing ingredients like oats, honey and wholegrain up by 11% over 2005 while brands like McVitie’s Digestives are down by more than 10%. No surprise, then, to see UB build on the success of the healthy Go Ahead brand with the launch of McVitie’s Yog Fruit Digestives.

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