Taylors of Harrogate: Wholesale is a real growth area

Darren Grealy (pictured), senior wholesale manager at Taylors of Harrogate, suggests that cash & carries complement in-store offerings with online fixtures.

How are you looking to develop your business through the cash & carry/delivered wholesale trade?

The C&C/delivered wholesale channel represents a real growth area for us and one where we see plenty of opportunity for the years ahead, especially as channels continue to merge.

Hot drinks have mass appeal for the full range of consumers across all sectors, and therefore we want to reach all shoppers with our core retail SKUs. Convenience retail fascias are key drivers of our core products, Rich Italian 227g coffee and Yorkshire Tea 40s and 80s.

One of the biggest developments we’ve made this year is deciding to move away from a One Cup product. We wanted to ensure that all of our customers were getting a proper, consistent brew both in and out of the home. Yorkshire Tea is now the only major standard black tea brand to offer the same strength across all its products after we increased the tea bag weight of our One Cup lines to match our retail offering. This is a first for the industry and something which we’re extremely proud of.

What are the key trends in tea and coffee and do you find that C&Cs/delivered wholesalers act on these?

Decaf continues to drive growth in the tea category, in line with consumer trends for low-caffeine options, with value up £150,000 in the last 12 weeks (IRI). We have a 23% market share and Yorkshire Tea is now the UK’s No.1 decaf tea brand.

Consumers want more from their hot drinks and expect to see a range of products over the standard instant coffee or black tea bag on shelf, even for top-up shops. As well as reducing caffeine consumption, there is a real desire for premium quality products, especially those that are affordable and easy to use. Stocking a number of good options, including a quality black tea, decaf, fruit and green flavours, and roast and ground coffee, will all meet this need.

We would also like to see more collaboration with suppliers. As technology evolves so do consumer needs, so complementing in-store offerings with online fixtures would be a brilliant idea. After all, the smartphone is almost a fixture in its own right.

How can cash & carries improve their sales of tea and coffee?

Again, I believe that online availability is key, as is running promotions at the right time.

Are there any cash & carries or delivered wholesalers you wish to highlight as being particularly progressive?

I think that Today’s Group has been very progressive over the last two years, as has Parfetts. Both are open to new ways of thinking and that is reflected in the growth we are seeing.

Can you outline an initiative with a wholesaler that has boosted the sales/profits of your products?

We all know tea and biscuits go hand-in-hand, so we approached Parfetts towards the end of last year to run a link deal with our 40s SKU and a large biscuit supplier. This was very successful and we’ll be rolling the same deal out to other wholesalers in the near future.

Can you share any news relating to forthcoming product launches?

For tea, our move away from One Cup products is near completion and we’re supporting the channel in getting the word out. Yorkshire Tea has created a host of free PoS resources, which are available to order through our website. These include Yorkshire Tea bunting, strut cards, window stickers and wipe-clean ‘How to make a proper brew’ posters.

Taylors has also introduced six new flavours to its classic range of speciality teas for the out-of-home market. Pure Green Tea, Green Tea with Mint, Classic Chai, White Tea, Ceylon Tea and Apple & Cinnamon are available in boxes of 20, six to a case.

In coffee, we’ll be expanding our range of coffee bags to include new formats which will be suitable for foodservice and caterers, as well as the convenience channel.

Is there anything else our readers should know about Taylors’ operation or strategy?

Taylors of Harrogate is a family-owned business, which means we take a long-term view. We’re building a sustainable business that will thrive for generations to come. We are determined to have a positive impact on the people and communities that we come into contact with, whether that’s by improving the livelihoods of the people that grow our tea and coffee or by planting millions of trees around the world.

 Tel: Taylors of Harrogate (01423) 814000

Published Date: January 17, 2019
Category: Meet the Manufacturer

KitKat ‘Make A Break For It’ promotion launched by Nestlé Confectionery

Nestlé Confectionery has launched a new on-pack promotion for KitKat, giving  consumers the chance to win a special break to one of 10 exotic destinations such as Miami, Cuba, Thailand and Barbados.

Promotional packs are available on KitKat 4 Finger, Chunky, 2 Finger and Bites. Consumers finding a winning ticket inside can claim a holiday prize worth up to £8,000. Each winning chocolate bar will feature the name of the dream holiday destination written on it in white chocolate, providing a fun and exciting way for consumers to discover their prize.

There are also 100 Getaway Goodies, such as KitKat branded passport covers, sun visors, beach towels and luggage straps, to be won every day during the promotional period. Consumers enter online the unique promotional code found inside packs to discover instantly if they are a winner.

A new media campaign will be launched on 4 February to support the ‘Make A Break For It’ activity and will include six-sheet posters, social and digital media activity.

Additionally, new KitKat TV advertising will be unveiled on 21 January as part of a £4.5 million media campaign, with a specific ‘Make A Break For It’ tag featuring in February.

Tel: Nestlé Confectionery 020-8686 3333

Published Date: January 17, 2019
Category: Product & Promotions News

Blakemore makes plans after cash & carry disposal

AF Blakemore & Son chairman Peter Blakemore has stressed how the company’s long-term strategic investment plan is enabling it to maximise future growth opportunities across the convenience, wholesale and specialist food sectors.

His comments follow the announcement of financial results for the year to 30 April, during which the company’s sale of its cash & carry business enabled it to develop its SPAR retail and wholesale operations.

Over this period, pre-tax profit of the retained parts of the West Midlands concern was £8.5 million on sales of £1.06 billion. And in the first 28 weeks of the current year, sales of continuing operations rose by 7.5%.

Blakemore said: “The cash & carry sale process has, understandably, had a significant impact on the overall financial performance of the company, which achieved sales of £1.26 billion and recorded a loss of £18.8 million after tax, with all cash & carry suppliers paid in full.

“I am also happy to say that 50% of our employees from the cash & carry operation maintained their employment, either with AF Blakemore or with the purchasing businesses.”

While exceptional provisions of £18 million were made as a result of the cash & carry sale, the process generated £17 million of surplus cash, most of this to be received during the present financial year. Long-term debt has been cut and the net asset value of the company’s balance sheet has been reduced from £88.7 million to £74.5 million.

The corporate plan includes lower prices for retail customers, innovative store formats and investment in the IT infrastructure.

Blakemore services 1,013 SPAR stores, 282 of which are company-owned.

Tel: AF Blakemore & Son (01902) 366066

Published Date: January 17, 2019
Category: Wholesale Industry News

Seventh year of Wing Yip young chef competition

The Wing Yip young chef competition – now in its seventh year – has been launched. It is open to chefs and catering students across the UK and Ireland who are aged between 18 and 25.

There are two stages: a written entry, including an Oriental recipe of choice, and a live cook-off among the finalists at University College Birmingham (UCB) on 4 April.

The winner will receive a £750 cash prize, as well as a stint with MasterChef finalist Larkin Cen at his restaurant, Woky Ko.

The judging panel comprises: Peter Griffiths, president of the British Culinary Federation; Michelin starred chef Glynn Purnell; and Larkin Cen.

Wing Yip director Brian Yip said: “The competition has firmly established itself in the culinary calendar. It offers an exciting opportunity for budding chefs to gain hands-on experience in Oriental cooking while gaining industry knowledge from renowned chefs.”

Wing Yip has sites in Birmingham, north London Manchester and Croydon.

Tel: Wing Yip 0121-327 6618

Published Date: January 17, 2019
Category: Wholesale Industry News

Euro Food Brands appointed UK distributor for Ainsley Harriott range

Euro Food Brands has been appointed the new UK distributor for Ainsley Harriott flavoured couscous and premium cup soup.

The Ainsley Harriott range has recently undergone a packaging revamp, giving more emphasis to the inclusions and flavour of the products, while retaining its premium look and feel.

Euro Food Brands’ managing director Peter Butler says: “We are delighted to be representing the Ainsley Harriott brand in the UK and Ireland. The brand already plays a significant role within flavoured couscous and cup soup; however, we have identified numerous growth opportunities in both existing and new categories and are working closely with production partners to achieve these.”

2019 is a going to be a high-profile year for Ainsley Harriott, with a new 10-part Caribbean-themed series coming up on primetime TV and the launch of a new cookbook to accompany it.

Euro Food Brands’ portfolio also includes international brands such as illy, Reese’s, Barilla and Campbell’s soup.

Tel: Euro Food Brands (01604) 821200

Published Date: January 14, 2019
Category: Product & Promotions News