As spring arrives, the weather gets warmer (that’s the theory…) and consumers get more relaxed, it’s time for our latest Big Night In feature, highlighting some of the sharing products available to help shoppers relax with friends and family.

chazJust a few days away now, Easter of course classifies as a Mega Night In, in sales terms! The Easter break runs from the evening of Thursday 17th April through to Monday evening, 22nd April, the biggest holiday blitz after Christmas – just what the trade needs after the long, wet winter. There are plenty more opportunities coming up for supermarkets, Co-ops and convenience store chains to boost their Big Nights In business over the next few months and encourage the shoppers they serve to get into the mood, with a full range of drinks and snacks. The Eurovision Song Contest – the prompt for plenty of fancy dress parties – is in Copenhagen on Saturday 10th May. And of course the FIFA World Cup 2014 starts in Manaus, Brazil on Thursday June 12 and ends on Sunday 13 July.

The rising cost of eating out is providing a significant boost for the British Big Night In. As young adults spend more time at home in the evenings, many are eating micro-snacking products while watching movies, playing on games consoles or spending time online. People enjoying a night in, whether enjoying a few drinks with friends, watching a film or playing the latest computer games, want tasty, filling snacks that don’t interrupt what they’re doing. That’s where ‘Hot, Quick & Tasty’ micro-snacking products like Kepak’s Rustlers, Quick Serve Microwaveable meals, Micro Pastry and Chilled Soup really come into their own. One of the advantages of these products is that they can be cooked in less time than it takes to boil a kettle.

So just why is the Big Night In so popular? First, thanks to years of squeezed incomes, higher food prices and less cash available there’s been a shift to entertaining at home. Second, thanks to Jamie, Nigella and the Bake Off crew, home cooking has never been more popular – including food for home entertaining. But most important of all, some things never change – everyone likes to have a good time, any time of year, and if they’ve got people coming they’ll come into your store ready to buy. So keep your fixtures stocked up with tempting treats and impulse products to make the party swing, come rain or shine!

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