Tulip International is using brand loyal Scotland as a test bed for a £150,000 investment in category management. Working with Safeway's marketing and retailing agency Storm at the Gyle Avenue store in Edinburgh, the first Bacon Zone opened for business in mid-October. "There's not been any razamatazz to make the fixture interesting, so this category management exercise is intended to make the fixture more exciting," says Tulip International sales and marketing director Malcolm Parkinson. "The bacon category is one of the most profitable for retailers. But very little has been done to guide consumers through the bacon options available and entice them to make purchases across a range of bacon products." The Bacon Zone comprises four sections of a 20ft multiplexed chiller cabinet ­ the fifth section is for sausages. Since Tulip brand bacon dominates the Scottish market, there is a 4ft section dedicated to the Tulip range. The Bacon Zone is hard to miss: bright yellow and red Tulip-branded overhead panels help shoppers locate the fixture from any part of the store. The sections are clearly marked with header boards and point of sale waymarks, including blue shelf barkers for unsmoked bacon and red for smoked. "Our research shows that shoppers spend 20 seconds choosing bacon, compared to 10 seconds at other fixtures," says Parkinson. That's a comparatively long time. "We are moving in the right direction by creating a logical display which bacon consumers will enjoy shopping." Most bacon shopping time will be spent examining the product's conformation rather than imagining what it will taste like when it is served, which is one of the issues Tulip is trying to address. {{FOCUS SPECIALS }}