Jenny Wren Christmas Collection launch follows P&H listing

Jenny Wren, the Kentish chocolate firm, has introduced its first-ever Christmas box for the “neglected” sub-£10 gifting category.

Based on a three-layered folding format, the Christmas Collection features 12 hand-finished Belgian chocolates and truffles, including Fleur de Sel caramel, raspberry yoghurt and white mocha. The rsp is £7.99

Jenny Wren is the only independent chocolate brand to feature in Palmer and Harvey’s Christmas catalogue. The supplier was set up in July 2016 by ex-Boots, Kimberly-Clark and ABF buyer and brand manager Mike Stainfield. It was launched with three box variants (milk, dark and mixed chocolate), followed five months later with a range of 100g bars. To date, the products are listed in more than 400 independent stockists across the UK.

Mike Stainfield, MD of Jenny Wren, says:  “We all know that giving and sharing chocolates at Christmas is a huge opportunity, but mid-range is poorly served and that’s where we slot in. We make the only chocolate gift boxes that you can buy for under £10 and still get a ‘wow!’ from the recipient. Add in some quality Belgian chocolates – and given the success of our existing gift box – and we’ve no doubt that this will prove a big hit at Christmas.” 

Tel: Jenny Wren (01892) 322059

Published Date: October 16, 2017
Category: Product & Promotions News

Responsible cleaning takes a step forward with Delphis Eco

Delphis Eco has introduced the first 100% post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic packaging, created after five years of research. With environmental concerns a major focus for suppliers, this breakthrough signals a possibility for change.

“Waste plastic is a huge issue. We hope that international corporates will sit up and take note by embracing the responsibility to invest and drive a paradigm shift on how we recycle plastic and use PCR waste,” says Mark Jankovich, CEO of Delphis Eco. “By driving this change to our packaging, we have taken 500 tonnes of carbon emissions out of the equation.”

There are more than 35 products available in five-litre formats that cover washroom, personal hygiene, general, kitchen and specialist areas, including anti-bacterial sanitisers, descalers and combi-oven cleaners.

Tel: Delphis Eco (0203) 397 0096

Published Date: October 16, 2017
Category: Product of the Month

Chris Sanders of Radnor Hills: Are your soft drink sales healthy?

Chris Sanders (pictured), sales director at Radnor Hills, urges wholesalers to tap into the sales potential of school and hospital-compliant soft drinks.

What proportion of your business goes through the cash & carry/ delivered wholesale trade?

Around 50% of our business is now cash & carry and delivered wholesale trade. Up until about five years ago it was around 25%, so it has seen significant growth, as has our overall company turnover.

How are you looking to develop your business through the wholesale trade? Which customer sectors are you specifically targeting? (For example, retail, foodservice, education, hospitals, licensed.)

We are looking to expand and develop in all of the above sectors. In the retail sector we have a really strong children’s lunchbox offering as well as our premium adult soft drinks range, Heartsease Farm.

We are market leaders in school-compliant drinks for the education and foodservice sector, having recently launched our Tetra Pak range, offering a drink suitable for primary and secondary schools in 125ml, 200ml and 250ml cartons. We have also developed a wide range of CQUIN (NHS) compliant soft drinks suitable for hospitals.

Our portfolio of products also includes a selection of on-trade specific drinks that offer premium quality. Our Heartsease Farm range is included in this, and in January we will be relaunching the drinks with a new label design and reduced sugar content – making them even more appealing to the licensed sector.

Have cash & carries tapped into the specific requirements of educational establishments and hospitals with regard to healthier soft drinks? How does this compare with foodservice delivered wholesalers that are used to these specific customer needs?

We have found that cash & carries have taken a little longer to catch on to the need for healthier soft drinks in hospitals and especially school-compliant products. One reason for this is that cash & carries have always historically stocked the classic carbonate brands and have not always branched out into the new and exciting options that are available to them. Booker is the latest cash & carry that has listed our school-compliant ranges in its depots and they are selling extremely well.

How can cash & carries improve their sales of ‘healthier’ soft drinks?

Point-of-sale material in cash & carries can be an important way of delivering strong messages. Not everybody knows what a school-compliant product is, how much sugar it contains, and what the minimum and maximum sizes are. When making school-compliant drinks there is an extra set of rules we must adhere to. With the right advertising it will make it a lot clearer for the customers to know what they are buying.

Similarly, what more can delivered wholesalers do to increase their sales of these drinks?

The biggest obstacle we find is wholesalers not necessarily jumping on board with new flavours. As a company we spend a lot of time doing market research and in schools delivering taste tastes. We have even developed a specifically designed taste test app for our drinks so we can keep up with market trends and develop new products based on our findings. We try to be as creative as possible but often new listings can get blocked. We would encourage all wholesalers to be creative with their soft drinks ranges and not just stick to core brands and flavours.

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

Dunsters Farm (a foodservice wholesaler based in Bury) recently visited our site here in Powys. They brought their entire sales team to our factory and they had a tour, learnt about the heritage of our company and really got a feel for what we do. We have worked with Dunsters for around nine years now and have built a great relationship with them. We would encourage any other wholesalers that work with us to come and see what we do and how we get their delivery to their door.

How will the forthcoming tax on sugary soft drinks affect your business?

We have adapted very quickly. We had two of our premium ranges that contained sugar, as this was the best option for us to get the great taste that we wanted. However, we have worked a lot now with stevia, and we will be looking to reduce the sugar in all of our products and keep them below the 5% mark.

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

Over the last six years we have really expanded our sales team as our sales and customer base have grown. For us it is all about building strong relationships and working closely with our customers to deliver the right product, at the right price, at the right time.

Tel: Radnor Hills (01547) 530220

Published Date: October 16, 2017
Category: Meet the Manufacturer

Booker compensates for further tobacco decline

Although Booker, like other cash & carry/wholesalers, continues to be hit by the downturn in tobacco trade, other parts of its business enabled the company to further improve in the 24 weeks to 8 September.

Pre-tax profit grew by 9% to £88 million on sales 2.5% up to £2.6 billion. Non-tobacco income rose by 7.5%, with tobacco falling by 9%.

Like-for-like sales to caterers increased by 8.1%, but there was only a marginal upward shift in retail trade – 0.6%.

Another split of the turnover shows that catering, coupled with small businesses, accounts for around £1 billion. Among the larger catering customers are Prezzo, Wagamama and Rick Stein.

There are now nearly 3,400 Premier retail customers, 1,829 Londis shops, 176 in the Budgens chain and 61 Family Shoppers.

Tel: Booker Group (01933) 371000

Published Date: October 13, 2017
Category: Wholesale Industry News

Change of name for Bestway Batleys Foodservice

Bestway Batleys Foodservice – part of Bestway Wholesale – has been relaunched as BB foodservice.

Bestway Wholesale managing director Martin Race said: “For years, wholesalers have been too preoccupied with what their competitors are doing to stop and ask their customers what they want.

“So we listened. And we put what we learned to good use. BB foodservice is here to deliver a local, more personal service – a complete service that gives customers what they want, when they want it. So they can focus on what they do best.”

As part of the rebrand, BB foodservice is utilising 15 ‘high performing’ depots: Aberdeen, Perth, Glasgow, Edinburgh (two), Newcastle, Cleveland, Liverpool, Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham, Gillingham, Southampton, Cardiff and Plymouth.

Each will supply a local fleet of delivery vehicles with a range of beers, wines & spirits, soft drinks, chilled, ambient and frozen food, meaning food & drink outlets can rely on one delivery for both their food and drink.

Race added: “This isn’t just about delivering quality products at competitive prices. From recipes, tools and calculators to our tailor-made wine list design service, our support doesn’t end at the door. Whatever our customers need, our local territory sales managers are just a phone call away.”

BB foodservice delivers to pubs, restaurants, hotels, schools and care homes.

Tel: Bestway Wholesale 020-8453 1234

Published Date: October 13, 2017
Category: Wholesale Industry News