discounters have already started flogging some of their olympic merchandise, but mascots Wenlock and Mandeville aren’t yet filling up the gondola ends of Britain’s supermarkets. And neither are BBQs and paddling pools.
In fact, when it comes to featured space this month, it’s as if the summer hasn’t happened yet, with the usual suspects in the 10 most-promoted brands.
True, Cadbury and Coca-Cola have been active on the back of their Olympic sponsorship deals in the four weeks ending 5 August, with both running more promotions than in the preceding four-week period. The increase is even more marked year-on-year, with Cadbury running 107 more deals than in July 2011, and Coca-Cola 53 more. But Mars has also been more active although Nestlé is running slightly fewer deals m-o-m.
Overall, the number of featured space promotions has risen from the 8,582 a year ago to 8,899 this year. It seems the poor weather is keeping bulky non-food items traditionally promoted at this time of year off fixtures.
The prawn markets continue to be volatile, with coldwater prawns now up by 112.1% year-on-year and 15.3% on last month, while warmwater prawns have declined by 32% in the past year - the biggest year-on-year fall in our tracker.
Coldwater prawn prices continue to be driven upwards by predator cod, which is threatening stocks around West Greenland, and lower prawn imports into the EU.
On the warmwater front, meanwhile, prices have dropped because key producing countries have ramped up production, and overall global demand, especially from the EU, is lower. Warmwater prices have fallen despite new concerns about disease outbreaks in Vietnam.
Farmed salmon prices are down 10% year-on-year and 2.6% on last month, driven by increased production from Norway and Chile, with plaice, pollock and haddock all showing year-on-year as well as month-on-month declines.
“Only a small amount of space is being allocated to non-food summer goods such as barbecues and outside toys as retailers cannot risk pushing those lines during bad weather,” said Kay Staniland, MD of retail analyst Assosia.
Even discounted Olympic goods were not given a lot of space, though this might not be a national trend, she added. One thing that is, however, is an increase in the depth of savings offered by featured space deals.
The typical saving on an own-label product has risen from 24.1% a year ago to 30.8%, not least because of a shift towards half-price deals.
This has been marked in fresh produce, where half-price deals have risen fourfold, from 44 a year ago to 166. It’s a development seen across the market, with half-price promotions accounting for 20.7% of all featured space deals in the past four weeks compared with 12.3% a year ago. Over the same period, x-for-y deals have fallen from 32.3% of deals to 25.6%.