MAY DIGITAL EDITION – A marked reduction in anxiety

There was relief all round when the European Council extended our EU departure to 31 October, postponing the threat of a catastrophic no-deal Brexit. The other good news is the CMA blocking the Sainsbury’s-Asda merger. It means the wholesale sector can focus on present business with reduced anxiety about the future.


Wholesalers aren’t exactly a pushover, but they’re more amenable to suppliers than the mults. Hence Unitas’s new Wholesale Supplier Council. Collaboration is also the order of the day at the Scottish Wholesale Association’s first ever Producers’ Exhibition, part of their 2019 Annual Conference, now just a few weeks away.

It’s show season. JW Filshill had their biggest ever event last month. Confex celebrated its eighth trade show and fifth Green Wholesaler Awards. And Nisa’s Evolution format store impressed at Retail 2019 at Stoneleigh.

As our Soft drinks feature reminds us, last summer is a hard act to follow in sales terms. Industry market reports tend to be understated. So, when Britvic’s 2018 Soft Drinks Review describes 2018 as an “unprecedented year for soft drinks, even with a number of impactful events to navigate,” it was a real belter.

We also have a Supplier Spotlight interview with Ian Patefield, Britvic’s new GB Wholesale Director. Staying with soft drinks, you have to admire Coca-Cola’s style. With spirits back in fashion, they’re returning to their roots as the original, authentic mixer with new Coca-Cola Signature Mixers.

In our Craft Drinks feature craft beer’s popularity has led to global beer companies targeting the ‘craft’ segment, snapping up independent craft breweries and launching beers marketed as ‘craft.’ But for most drinkers Mintel say it’s about what’s in the glass, not who makes it.

Habits change but breakfast remains a firm favourite for 95% of Brits. In our feature older people are more likely to breakfast at home and have a smaller food repertoire. Younger ones go less for routine, more inclined to eat breakfast out of home. In our Mints & Gums feature, with more of us on the move and wanting fresh breath confidence, mints and gums deliver clean teeth when brushing’s impossible. In our Ice Cream feature, Häagen-Dazs’ new Barista Collection feeds our passion for cafes, coffee shops, coffee and iced coffee treats. And ice cream.

In our Meet the Marketer spot, we hear from Claire Cooper, McCoy’s Marketing Manager at KP Snacks, responsible for McCoy’s Muchos, KP’s biggest ever launch. We also talk to the FDF’s Ian Wright, whose life is less stressful now Brexit’s delayed. Finally congratulations to the organisers of GroceryAid’s Barcode Festival, happening in July. Tickets are sold out but there’s always 2010!