Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Boosting breakfast with a beverage

Breakfast is often considered the most important meal of the day. But what’s a meal without a beverage? Retail World looks at juices, coffee and tea that can kickstart your customer’s day the right way.

Golden opportunity

The ambient juice category was declining year on year before the pandemic, notes Kraft Heinz ANZ Brand Manager Meneka Ratnasothy, but since the introduction of state-wide lockdowns, consumers have begun coming back to the juice aisle.

She says the category has had a strong comeback since Covid began and is continuing to grow strongly for the second year – at 5.4% for the 12 months ending 3 October 2021 compared with the previous corresponding period (IRI Scan Data).

Considering this, Ms Ratnasothy advises retailers that “now is the opportunity to win shoppers long term by providing them with a range that meets their demands for all occasions”.

“Sugar content is the biggest occasion barrier [Source: Beverages U&A Study 2020],” she says, “and being naturally high in sugar is a big challenge for 100% juice.

“To overcome this, [Kraft Heinz’s Golden Circle brand has] developed a range of ‘50% Less Sugar’ juices and has a number of exciting new products being developed to address this consumer demand.”

Beyond product, the brand has recently invested in an in-depth ‘perfect shelf’ study. Golden Circle talked to consumers, aiming to understand how they shop the category and how the brand can help shoppers navigate and find what they’re looking for faster.

“They highlighted that shelf callouts – for example, ‘new’ or ‘low in sugar’ – would make it easier for them to find what they’re looking for,” says Ms Ratnasothy.

“We’re really listening to our customers, who are telling us what they want and how their lifestyles and weekly shopping patterns have changed, especially after Covid.”

Keeping premium coffee hot

An Allpress spokesperson notes a “big shift” towards premiumisation in the at-home coffee channel due to Covid-19.

“Much of that lift will remain as people return to the office, because customers now want to be able to recreate that cafe experience at home,” says Allpress.

In terms of category challenges, the brand says the rapid channel shift away from wholesale pack sizing to smaller ‘at home’ packs has put pressure on packaging supply chains.

“Additionally, shipping congestion, agricultural events and market activity has put pressure on green bean supply, coffee bags and takeaway cups,” says the spokesperson. “We have overcome these hurdles by staying agile and dialling up the communication with our great supply partners.”

With Allpress’ fresh roasted coffee “increasingly” appearing on the grocery shelf, the brand has rethought how it communicates on-pack.

“We’re changing our pack design to communicate the expertise behind our products that would traditionally be communicated in person by our team,” says the spokesperson.

“We’re also building custom furniture for a major specialty grocery distributor, to stand apart from our competitors.”

When asked about the future of Allpress, the brand says it must have an “absolute focus” on quality.

“Our promise is ‘iconic flavour’, so we have to stay true to that vision,” says the spokesperson. “That means keeping things simple and being laser focused on quality while driving innovation along the supply chain to make sure we maintain our premium position and strong values.”

Consumer focused tea

Natural ingredients, sustainability and health benefits are the recent trends driving tea’s popularity, says Dilmah Senior Executive John Trovato. Health, in particular, he adds, has been a “key attribute” since Covid-19.

“Listen to the consumer,” Mr Trovato advises retailers. “Expand the category based on [their] needs.”

He pinpoints a few segments worth targeting:

  • Leaf tea delivers on the sustainability proposition. It’s currently a “key segment” growing outside of the supermarket channel.
  • Like leaf tea, ‘tagless’ tea bags also address sustainability.
  • Health-conscious consumers are seeking health alternatives in the wake of the pandemic.

Looking ahead, Mr Trovato says Dilmah will continue to provide consumers with 100% pure Ceylon tea, “as we’ve done for over 30 years”: handpicked and made in the traditional, artisanal way.

“It’s packed in Sri Lanka – right where it’s grown – within days of harvesting, to preserve great taste, freshness and natural antioxidant goodness,” he says.

“Our NPD offering will focus on the health and wellness of consumers with our commitment to sustainability through our packaging and our Conservation Foundation.”

Read more about breakfast beverages in the January/February issue of Retail World.

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