Welcome to the November-December issue of Grocery Trader. A new baseline for the grocery market has been established as shopper habits have stabilised post-pandemic. Take home grocery sales fell by 1.9% over the 12 weeks to 31 October 2021, according to the latest figures from Kantar. Although in decline compared with the same 12 weeks in 2020, sales are still 7.3% higher than in 2019.


Morrisons has brought forward its commitment to be net zero carbon emissions from its own operations by 2035, five years earlier than initially pledged and 15 years ahead of the UK government target. Morrisons is also committing to reducing its wider ‘Scope 3’ emissions across its entire own brand supply chain – by 30 per cent by 2030 and is already working with suppliers to support them in this. Morrisons is ahead of forecast in reducing its operational carbon emissions.

UK industry leaders from 27 major businesses – all of the biggest UK grocery retailers (including Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Marks & Spencer and Iceland), some of the largest meat producers (including Avara Foods, 2 Sisters Food Group, Cranswick, Pilgrim’s UK), and food service companies and brands (such as Danone UK and Ireland, Nestle UK and Ireland, Nando’s, KFC UK and Ireland and McDonald’s UK and Ireland) united in signing the UK Soy Manifesto. This commits them to cutting deforestation and habitat destruction out of UK soy supply chains as soon as possible, and by 2025 at the latest.

Rustlers, the £111.6m chilled ready meals brand from Kepak, has announced plans to launch a meat mimicking burger. These plans tap into the rapid growth of the meat-free category as flexitarians look for ways to cut back on their meat consumption. In a Supplier Spotlight interview, Adrian Lawlor, CMO of Kepak Group, talks to Grocery Trader about the incremental sales Rustlers’ latest product offers and how retailers can seize the opportunity to make more money from the category with convenient, tasty options at accessible price points.

Tobacco continues to be a huge FMCG category, worth £2.2bn after tax. The market remains driven by value, with the sub economy sector accounting for nearly 60% of factory made cigarettes. Duncan Cunningham, UK Corporate Affairs Director at Imperial Tobacco & blu, tells our Supplier Spotlight page how retailers can merchandise tobacco in depot and how Imperial works with retailers to improve sales.

The non-alcoholic beer and low-alcohol beer (NABLAB) sector has witnessed more than 50% growth over the last two years. Dry January is approaching as consumers seek to get the year off to a healthy start, giving retailers the opportunity to win with a strong selection of NABLAB brands. Rory Davidson, Commercial Director at Budweiser Brewing Group UK&I, tells Grocery Trader how retailers can maximise sales around Dry January.

Enjoy reading the issue.


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