|Cakes & biscuits|
Cakes & cookies give an energy lift. Most of us feel like an energy lift to help us through those cold, dark days from June to September, and salads and such-like may well be put on hold until warmer days as the desire for something sweet takes over. But uncertain economic times are having an effect on the market.
DOMINANCE IN BISCUITS
As a category, Biscuits represents 3% of total Pre-packaged Grocery. The Biscuit category is valued at $375 million and growth +4.2%.
With more than 120 years of baking expertise and creating brands for New Zealanders, Griffins is the key biscuit supplier, holding a 37.5 % value share and +6.8% dollar value growth. (MAT Aztec 13/05/12)
Griffin’s has nine out of the top 10 biscuits in Grocery (Aztec Data MAT to 13th May 2011), including perennial Kiwi favourites such as Toffee Pops, MallowPuffs, Squiggles, Gingernuts, Super Wines, Cookie Bear Chocolate Chippies and Cookie Bear Shrewsbury.
A major launch was the Collisions range in May 2011. “Collisions is a range of four biscuits which combine two of NZs favourite chocolate biscuits to create the ultimate chocolate biscuit,” says Biscuits category manager Hamish Macpherson.
The Collisions range includes MallowPuffs Toffee Pops, MallowPuffs Mint Treat, Toffee Pops Krispie and Hokey Pokey Squiggles Chocolate Chippie. Collisions have sold “extremely well,” said Macpherson. “The high level of product trial drove Collisions to be the number one biscuit NPD launch* in the Biscuits category. For the Enrobed segment, Collisions assisted to drive retail sales to a new record for the September quarter of 2011.” (Measured by TKA retail sales for the first 13 weeks of launch Aztec.)
Biscuits marketing manager Angela Monro says following the launch of the ‘Dear Griffin’s’ campaign in June 2011, consumers have responded well to what they love about Griffin’s biscuits.
“An incredible success has been the development of the Griffin’s Facebook page. This has grown to more than 75,000 fans. We have seen growing support from the Facebook community to bring back an old favourite – Chocoade; a great orangey, chockie bikkie from the ’80s. The pre-launch support for the product from retailers and consumers has been astounding,” she said. The launch date was set for July 9, 2012.
Consumer research shows that an energy lift is the most common reason for buying biscuits and cookies, according to Lizzie Parker, marketing manager, Cookie Time.
“Cookies are at the more indulgent end of the category and are about taking a break in routine, enjoying time out and lifting your mood. Cookie Time cookies have been around for close to 30 years and our best-selling Original Chocolate Chunk cookie is still made to the same recipe.”
Parker says Cookie Time is renowned for its “generous chunks of chocolate, delicious taste and wholesome pantry style ingredients – real chocolate, real eggs and real butter. We batch-bake our cookies and make more than 11 different types, from Original Chocolate Chunk through to Triple Chocolate, Apricot Chocolate, Afghans and Gluten-Free. All our cookies are free from artificial colours, flavours and preservatives.
“We’re looking to launch a number of range extensions and new products. In the last 12 months we’ve been primarily focused on the route trade and schools with new product development, but we now have a number of projects underway for grocery, using research insights,” she said.
“Amongst the findings is the way our lives are now punctuated with regular snacks. The snack food category has expanded, with snacking being about moderating energy levels – the antidote to stress and fast lives.
“Snack food is anything mobile or portable, modified or combined to make more ‘convenient’ eg, from cereal to bar, from solid to liquid or scaled down from meal size. Cookie Time meets this need with a range of cookie sizes.”
HOME BAKING REVIVAL
The Cake Mix category is worth $13.7m and the Edmonds range is a strong player with 41% unit share of the category (Aztec Data, MAT 20/05/12). “We have 19 SKUs across our Cake Mix range, ranging from affordable Family Favourites through to more indulgent Home Café variants and Pancakes,” said Edmonds brand manager Rachel Olsen.
“Home baking seems to be on the rise, predominately due to tough economic times and the proliferation of baking and cooking shows on TV. However, consumers are also becoming increasingly time poor and hence requiring the need for convenience. Cake Mix provides the joy of baking quickly and easily.”
Olsen says Edmonds is one of New Zealand’s oldest and best loved brands and is synonymous with Kiwi baking. “The Edmonds Cake Mix range provides the reassurance of Edmonds’ baking expertise and carries the sure-to-rise promise. This shines through in our Cake Mix performance which has seen substantial growth over the last year.
“Dollars are up 13.4% and units are up 10.1% vs YA, well above total category growth (Aztec Data, MAT 20/05/12). Cupcakes continue to be popular with consumers and whilst there are a lot of flavours to choose from within the Cake Mix category, chocolate is still number one,” she said.
BONUS FOR BAKERS
Nestlé remains the number one cocoa and cooking chocolate brand – excluding private label – with 30.1%* share of the category.
“Nestlé has seen double digit growth (+12.5% value MAT*) across its entire cocoa and cooking chocolate baking portfolio due to the recent resurgence towards baking,” says Nestlé Foods category manager Richard Brown. He says the growth comes as no surprise as Nestlé has created more baking occasions, including Easter, the winter months of June/July, and Christmas.
“In terms of cooking chocolate, Nestlé Dark Melts is the top SKU, generating 23%* of total Nestlé cooking chocolate sales, while Nestlé Milk Choc Bits remains the top-selling SKU in the Nestlé Choc Bit range. Nestlé Baking Cocoa is also a consistently strong SKU – generating in excess of $1m scan sales* and growing at an impressive +55% value MAT*.
“To bring further excitement to the segment and enable expansion of recipes for bakers, Nestlé has just launched two new products – Caramel Bits and Mini Milk Choc Bits. These products will increase baking frequency by giving bakers more ideas and opportunities around everyday baking ingredients,” Brown said.
“Complementing Nestlé’s baking range is the much loved and iconic Highlander brand which has been around for 120 years. Significantly, Highlander remains the number one Nestlé product used in baking, with over $7.6 million* in scanned sales. Baking motivations are primarily driven by consumers’ desire for emotional bonding with families and the ability to be creative while doing so.”
Brown adds: “There is further opportunity to drive innovation in the baking category and bring emotion to the home baking categories in store. This unlocked opportunity for both suppliers and retailers can delivery category growth and generate strong incremental sales for baking.”
*Nielsen ScanTrack Total Supermarkets MAT to 20/05/12
MICRO NUTRIENTS RECOGNISED
Eat Right Foods supplies supermarkets, organic-health food stores and cafes throughout New Zealand and various parts of the world.
Managing director Rebecca Douglas-Clifford says Eat Right has invested significant resources into the development of a range of bio-available nutrient products. A prototype “Mineral Rich Cookie” was recently presented to the buyers at Whole Foods Market in the US.
She believes consumers are becoming far more concerned with what is in products rather than what a product is free from. “No longer is the nutritional panel, which provides only the macro nutritional information, enough for consumers. It is the micro nutrients in a product which are gaining more recognition. Micro nutrients are available in their highest form in whole grains, seeds, fruits and vegetables and definitely not in white sugar and refined flours typically used by low cost-high volume bake goods manufacturers,” Douglas-Clifford said.
CAKES AND JAM TARTS
Hansells Food Group owns the Aunt Betty’s brand, synonymous with steamed puddings. Last year the brand launched a new range of classic cakes and jam tarts made in Hansells’ new Penrose, Auckland bakery.
Chocolate, ginger, carrot and walnut cakes, were launched along with a banana bread, and a range of jam tarts in lemon, apricot and raspberry. The latter part of 2011 saw the launch of Aunt Betty’s Scandals, a more indulgent offering featuring bite size tarts in chocolate flavoured pastry shells with choc truffle and caramel fillings.
Brand manager Donna O’Herlihy says the brand is launching an additional jam tart to the current range in the popular flavour of passionfruit. “Aunt Betty’s is also launching a new Scandals offering – Caramel Pecan, a crunchy shortcrust pastry shell with a silky caramel centre topped off with pecans.
“Other news is that all Aunt Betty’s tarts will move to a fresh, more modern look packing from July. Learnings taken from the launch of the baked items include consumers’ desire to actually see what they’re going to get before they purchase. We’re getting rid of the currently-used closed box and moving to clear flow wrap.”
O’Herlihy says the new packaging will showcase the new look and feel for the brand, which has just been rolled out on new packs of Aunt Betty’s Steamy Puds. Cake packaging will move to the new look later this year.
RICE CRACKER GROWTH
Peckish Rice Crackers is “a wow product and has taken New Zealand by storm”, according to business manager Brandlines Fiona Odering.
“In March they were launched into Countdown, completing full supermarket distribution. Since this launch, Peckish Rice Crackers has continued the phenomenal growth with year to date being 91%*. They are a proven high volume mover and are now the number one selling rice cracker in Total Key Accounts*. Out of the top 75 SKUs within the rice cracker category, Peckish Rice Crackers has number one, two and three rankings, another four in the top 12 and Wasabi is ranked at number 25,”* she said.
“Peckish Rice Crackers’ market share is 35.2%* which is driven by the simple love consumers have for this high quality product; the thinner, lighter and crispier attributes,” Odering said. “It is not often New Zealand sees products that tick all the boxes: great retailer margin, competitive shelf and promotional pricing, strong in-store support and quality product that consumers love. This was all confirmed when Peckish Rice Crackers was awarded Gold for Best New Product at the 2012 Nargon Awards. Peckish Rice Crackers have exciting times ahead for both the grocery trade and consumers.”
*Aztec data 12 weeks to 27/05/12
INNOVATION FROM GERALDINE
Barker’s of Geraldine is a new player to the baking needs segment with an innovative range of convenience bakery fillings and dessert solutions. It is a leading supplier of fillings to bakeries and cafes.
Marketing manager Danielle Esplin says Barker’s has used its bakery experience to create a unique range of retail products which helps home chefs create impressive baked goods and desserts with ease. “The Barker’s bakery range introduced late last year will be re-packaged and re-launched in August to include four exciting products; Lemon & Passionfruit tartlet filling, Chocolate mousse mix, Apple Berry crumble filling and the all new Lime pie filling.”
This is in response to the rise in home baking and entertaining and one of the fastest growing opportunities in-store, Esplin said. “Not all home cooks have the time or skill to create presentable baked goods or desserts from scratch, so our range targets the ‘food assembler’; someone who enjoys being in the kitchen and making desserts, but want the convenience option.
“The Barker’s bakery and dessert range provides shoppers with a new choice in baking needs which has traditionally been dominated by cake and muffin mixes. The new range extends into the dessert aisle where home cooks are looking for something more sophisticated than the traditional instant dessert powders, microwaveable puddings or shelf stable options.”
Esplin says the range is priced competitively with chilled, store bought desserts. “Home cooks can feel proud by adding their creativity to garnishing or making a serving size to suit their occasion.”
CS Brokers-Interlink introduced the Balconi brand of snacks, sponges and rolls into the New Zealand market early this year.
Established in Milan in 1950, Balconi is a family business that exports products all around the world with more than 3.5 million sponge rolls produced each day – enough to cover two rugby fields.
“Balconi has a reputation for producing sponge products of high standard and delicious eating quality,” said CS Brokers director, Stephen Hay. “Kiwis love these snacks and the Balconi products bring innovation and quality. Consumers are looking for quality foods at an affordable price.”
He says the key products introduced are:
• Classic Mix Max 10s – loved for its sponge with low fat cocoa and milk filling.
Original Foods brands in route go mainly to service stations. The products are: Original Foods muffins, slice, donuts, cheesecake and cake wedges.
Director Jane Mayell says the market is declining due to a number of factors, such as in-store bakeries and cafés making more lines in-house with fewer buy-in lines. “Also, I feel the price of petrol has an impact on impulse buying in this market. However, we do get a huge amount of positive customer feedback, by way of emails driven through our website. Customer feedback via web consistently increases, which we see as extremely positive, and very much assists us with our direction on product development.”
Mayell says there is a trend towards a combination of consumers – those looking for something packaged on the run as a snack/lunch option and those looking for the more indulgent sweet snack or sugar fix. Updating of range and packaging is planned, she said.