Morrisons Halloween 4

Source: Morrisons

Talk about scare tactics. Asda’s controversial contribution to seasonal scares last year was arguably too terrifying.

It was Carrie, an ashen-skinned, hollow-eyed animatronic doll decoration that looked like she’d ridden her rocking horse straight out of hell.

Reports in local papers claimed Carrie left shoppers “petrified” and feeling “physically sick” after coming across the robotic horror rocking herself to a sinister lullaby.

Not that it’s deterred Asda from bringing back the spine-chilling concept this year.

After all, it’s in keeping with the retailer’s leadership on Halloween, a product of its former ownership by US retailer Walmart. Last year, Asda also had ghoulish Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse mugs, a skeleton decoration reclining in a steaming cauldron, and dolls from The Nightmare Before Christmas.

But it wasn’t the only retailer looking to make a scene. “Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s and the discounters have been building their share of the occasion by focusing on building interesting displays and wide ranges,” says Mark Roberts, trade marketing director at Perfetti Van Melle.

For Halloween 2022, Tesco had a range of kids’ fancy-dress costumes, including a friendly ghost and a T-rex, and decorations such as a gnome-like ‘Wizard Gonk’.

Going beyond the usual lineup of trick or treat goodies, Morrisons added red-fleshed Kissabel Apples (rsp: 99p/three-pack) and Nightmare on Market Street Cheddar Cheese (rsp: £1.35/100g).

The two products would “pair perfectly on cheese boards or can be enjoyed on their own,” said Morrisons seasonal trade planner Fi Mitchell at the time.

Morrisons also proposed that kids use the Kissabel Apples in Halloween games such as apple bobbing, or as the main part of a toffee apple. Other launches included Halloween Ginger Bread House and Ghost Pumpkin.

In Aldi, meanwhile, the middle aisle brimmed last year with Halloween decorations such as inflatable witch legs with stripy tights (rsp: £34.99), a giant inflatable spider (rsp: £39.99) and a pinata pumpkin (rsp: £7.99).

Overall, the wide range of seasonal products across grocery meant there was something spooky for even the most fearless reveller.

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