May / June – Bring on the heat wave

Welcome to the May-June edition of Wholesale Manager, our third bi-monthly issue of the year. We’re half way through 2014 now – summer’s here, and consumers are getting on with the serious business of enjoying themselves, great news for the UK’s cash & carries and delivered wholesalers. We’ve got the excitement of the World Cup – now here’s to a few heat waves over the next few weeks, to further lift the spirits and send spending soaring!


Wholesale_FrontMeanwhile we bring you the latest news from the industry and the suppliers, plus our regular sections on Grocery and The Warehouse. One grocery product sector growing strongly is Coconut milk products, with volume and value sales up a fifth on last year. As reported on our cover, world food and drinks specialist Tropical Sun Foods has added two new coconut products to its ingredients portfolio to help independent retailers and wholesalers capitalise on the phenomenal consumer demand. The brand has launched a 100% Natural Coconut Milk in a 400ml can, sitting alongside the existing Premium Coconut Milk and a new Coconut Milk Powder in a 50g sachet, aimed at attracting consumers looking for a convenient yet delicious way to tropicalise sweet or savoury dishes.

Another product category continuing to grow strongly in the independent sector and hence in wholesale, is electronic cigarettes, and we have an exclusive interview with Tristan Okulus, founder and MD of Innovation Cigarettes, trading under the INCIG e-cigarette brand.

Traditional cigarettes have been strictly regulated here for years now, with hefty taxes, gruesome health warnings, an advertising ban and a clampdown on merchandising and displays in store, plus strict smoking bans in many locations, and growing social disapproval for smokers. But thanks to e-cigarettes and e-liquids from leading supplier INCIG, individuals ‘vape-ing’ – as opposed to smoking – these fast-selling products can enjoy the same habitual sensation as a traditional cigarette without the serious health implications and the rest. And wholesalers can enjoy a healthy profit.

After management offices and purchasing the warehouse is probably the most important part of any cash & carry or delivered wholesaler, with the emphasis firmly on maximising efficiency and productivity. As our front page lead story reports, Yearsley Logistics, the UK’s biggest frozen food logistics service provider recently chose two cold store models from articulated forklift manufacturer Aisle-Master to ensure maximum pallet density at its automated cold storage facility at Hams Hall, to continue improving its service offering. The new Aisle-Masters replace a mix of counterbalance and reach trucks, and their narrow aisle capability has enabled the pallet count to increase from 3,800 to 4,500 and let Yearsley exploit every inch of cold storage space.