Dairy Crest has called on retailers to simplify their cheese aisles and broaden the reach of promotions on offer.
In a report on the cheese category, the company says the high number of stock-keeping units (SKUs) in the cheese category is bewildering. “There are too many SKUs,” says the report. “This over-ranging creates a highly complex and confusing fixture for both the shopper and the retailer.”
Large numbers of SKUs lead to high out of stocks, says the company. “Reducing these out of stocks will make shopping the cheese fixture a more satisfying experience while adding value.”
The Dairy Crest Cheese
Report 2005 also urges retailers to extend the reach of promotions to encourage shoppers to try new cheeses.
“Many shoppers already buy across a range of segments, but they do it infrequently. Driving growth will be achieved by encouraging shoppers to increase their cheese repertoire every time they shop.
“This can be achieved by offering appropriate promotional mechanics across different segments. Currently activity such as bogofs and multibuys only encourages shoppers to switch cheese types within the same segment.
“To drive repertoire, this type of promotional activity needs to be run across various segments.”
In the UK, only one in five households has more than one cheese in the fridge. In Austria the figure is three in five, while in France it is five out of five.
The UK’s cheese category is growing by 4% year-on-year and is now worth £1.84bn [TNS, 52 weeks to May 22, 2005]. Branded cheese is worth £755m, with branded Cheddar making up almost half of this.
Richard Clarke