Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 8, 2013 11:41 AM
What North Americans know as moose and Europeans call elk apparently make a tasty meal. Since January, consumers in Europe and Asia could find the animal’s meat in lasagna sold at the Swedish furniture giant's stores. But recently there has apparently been a little something else in IKEA’s Elk Lasagna that consumers weren’t aware of: pork.
This isn't the first meat mix-up that IKEA has dealt with, as the company was one of several retailers implicated in the horse meat scandal that has swept across Europe. IKEA has been forced to remove its famed Swedish meatballs from its restaurants and frozen food aisles, and adding to its meat woes, the brand has just pulled nearly 18,000 units of its elk lasagne from its stores and websites after authorities in Belgium discovered the product contained a percentage of pork meat.Continue reading...
Posted by Alicia Ciccone on March 13, 2013 07:12 PM
An age-old battle rages on, pinning two unsuspecting objects against each other and forcing consumers to choose: Would you rather twist or clip?
Apparently, the "reclosure" market is quite hot, as the smallest plastic packaging details continue to fight for real estate along America's bread shelves. While there is no available sales data for the country's largest manufacturers of plastic closures (they're privately held), there is a consensus among industry leaders that places the twist-tie on top of the pile.
“We feel, based on surveys we’ve done, that the twist-tie is consumer-preferred, but of course the clip people will tell you the same thing about their product,” Beth Radloff, marketing specialist for Bedford Industries, a Minnesota-based firm that’s the largest twist-tie manufacturer for the U.S. bakery market, told Bloomberg BusinessWeek.
Despite a lack of attention, the $10 million industry is the focus of an ongoing tug-of-war as brands flip-flop between packaging closures.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 12, 2013 03:38 PM
Danone, Unilever and Nestlé top the list in the first edition of the global Access to Nutrition Index as the three best global brands offering products that address obesity and poor nutrition.
The report reviews 25 of the world's major food and beverage manufacturers across corporate nutrition-related policies, formulation of healthier, affordable products, informative nutrition labeling and responsible marketing.
"Obesity and undernutrition affect billions of people and threaten a global health catastrophe,” said Inge Kauer, Executive Director of ATNI. “The Access to Nutrition Index is an urgent call to action for food and beverage manufacturers to integrate improved nutrition into their business strategies.”
The Index, developed by the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition, a non-profit with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Wellcome Trust, ranked the top 10:Continue reading...
in the spotlight
Posted by Dale Buss on January 25, 2013 10:59 AM
After spending the first couple years of his tenure falling short of expectations, Procter & Gamble CEO Bob McDonald now sees a big ray of sunshine — in the form of P&G's second fiscal quarter earnings report. Earnings and sales were well ahead of forecast thanks to the chief's recent aggressive actions to boost brand performance and cut costs.
Consumer and retailer response to new products such as Tide Pods and a high-price version of Pantene shampoo has been promising. P&G said it held or grew market share in businesses representing nearly 50 percent of sales in the October-December quarter. In the U.S. market, it met that pattern in businesses representing nearly 60 percent of sales.
The case of Tide Pods, an important new product, is an example of what P&G is aiming for. Marketing has been able to persuade some customers, even cost-conscious ones, that the premium-priced innovation, which is coming up on its first anniversary, is worth the higher outlay.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 23, 2013 05:45 PM
Unilever's recent sale of its Skippy peanut butter brand in North America was just one indication of how slow-growing food businesses have begun to weigh down the global CPG giant.
Today's earnings report underscored that difficulty for Unilever: Fourth-quarter sales of Ben & Jerry's, Knorr soups and other Unilever food brands rose only 1.3 percent as consumers in debt-laden U.S. and Western Europe markets continue to pare back their supermarket purchases.
On the other hand, Unilever's business in Asia, Africa and Latin America demonstrated enough strength that the company was able to report an overall 5.4 percent rise in net profit for the period. In those markets, its revenues accelerated in home and personal-care items such as surface cleaners, soap and deodorant.Continue reading...
chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on December 20, 2012 03:01 PM
If innovation is the lifeblood of business, then General Mills will be pumping hard in the new year. The CPG giant released news about more than 100 new products that it will launch in its U.S. retail portfolio alone during its fiscal 2013.
General Mills would like to generate between 4 percent and 5 percent of its sales from new products "and we think we will be very much in that range," CEO Ken Powell told Wall Street analysts during a conference call this week, according to Ad Age. "We want to make sure that we are launching products that are bringing new consumers into [their brand] franchise, and we have steadily improved that number."
The new products range from new varieties of Fiber One products to a Snickerdoodles flavor of Chex Mix Muddy Buddies. And if there are some underlying themes to the whole list, they would be peanut butter and chocolate, along with fiber and protein, according to a General Mills blog post detailing the roster of new products.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 18, 2012 05:05 PM
Tide Pods are providing a robust helping of good news for Procter & Gamble in a year when its brands, products, strategy and even CEO have been taking a beating.
The company is projecting $500 million in first-year retail sales for pods, according to Ad Age. That's a major feat, given that of the 1,500 new consumer-packaged-goods launches tracked by SymphonyIRI in 2011, only 21 percent reached one-year sales of even $50 million.
Hungry for a big win at a time when nearly everything about its long-running formula for victory has been questioned, P&G has seen Tide Pods become a relatively rapid success since launching in February with a colorful campaign — with a few speed bumps along the way.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on December 14, 2012 01:32 PM
Japan experienced a "lost decade" of economic stagnation in the Nineties, and that was bad enough. But now the CEO of Unilever warns that Europe's slump may end up lasting at least that long. And that means Unilever and the rest of the CPG industry will continue having to adapt to it.
"We are in for at least 10 years of slow economic growth in Europe, and I don't see that changing" after the continent already has been slumping for a few years, Paul Polman told Bloomberg. "The key thing is to see reality in the eye."
And while Polman looks for continued difficulties in the Dutch company's close European market, which accounts for about 25 percent of its $65 billion in annual sales, he also doesn't like what he sees — and foresees — in the economy of the U.S., for which Unilever now depends for about 16 percent of sales.Continue reading...