Five developments in UK private label

Date : 08 October 2019

We share range developments and additions from Waitrose, M&S, Iceland, Sainsbury's and Tesco.

New look for Waitrose's top tier private label

Waitrose & Partners has relaunched its top tier private label range: Waitrose & Partners No.1. The total range will feature over 740 products across a wide breadth of categories. Waitrose is keen to emphasise the role of its team in sourcing ingredients, curating a selection of recipes and showcasing the quality of the products. This reflects the total business shining the spotlight on its Partners as a key point of difference.

The range was initially launched in 2016, with Waitrose aiming to repeat the success of its entry tier essentials private label products.

What's different:

  1. The new packaging design: in some ways it takes cues from Tesco's recent redesign of its top tier finest* range, which moved away from a black background to help it stand out from competitors
  2. Extension to new categories including wines, ciders and spirits, as well as a top tier range of horticulture
  3. Sustainability is front of mind for changes to packaging
  4. 150 brand new products and 80 products that have been updated and improved

Source: Waitrose & Partners


M&S targets bigger share of evening mealtimes

M&S's new range, Cook with M&S, aims to help shoppers overcome the midweek cooking rut. The range includes a wide span of products, from sauces and seasonings to frozen ingredients and chilled dishes. For example, family-sized traybakes, whole peeled potatoes, and "magic sprinkle" - an instant flavouring that can be added to different foods to give them a boost.

Bold and colourful packaging and displays draw attention on gondola ends, in the aisles and in display units across the store. The launch comes at a time when M&S is keen to drive forward its reputation for food innovation, and offer relevant and exciting solutions for families and younger shoppers.   

Source: IGD Research


Iceland's celebrity partnership

Iceland has partnered with celebrity chef Gino D'Acampo for an exclusive new range of frozen Italian flatbreads, meals and desserts. To highlight product quality and provenance, a series of Youtube videos showcase the recipes for items in the range. Iceland continues to evolve and improve its private label proposition, launching 550 new and improved products this autumn, according to reports by The Grocer.

Sainsbury's rethinks entry tier strategy

Sainsbury’s has revealed new detail about how it plans to strengthen its appeal to value seeking customers through the expansion of its entry price point (EPP) lines offer. Recognising that shoppers want a more inspiring value choice, it is replacing the Basics brand across 13 categories with a better quality but keenly priced options.

To date, 120 SKUs have been replaced and a further sixty will follow by Christmas.  Initial results from the new lines in meat, fish and poultry (including the J. James range) suggests the majority of sales are being generated by shoppers switching to Sainsbury’s from competitors rather than trading down from other Sainsbury’s ranges.

Tesco strengthens plant-based range

Tesco has just launched a new ‘Plant Chef’ range, broadening its plant-based offer. Together with the highly successful Wicked Kitchen range it will build Tesco’s plant-based range to over 200 lines. By January, the number of plant-based lines at Tesco will have doubled, with Tesco keen to maintain its leadership position in this fast growing segment.

Source: IGD Research


So what?

The UK is one of the most developed private label grocery markets in the world. IGD's ShopperVista data reveals that 64% of British shoppers trust private labels as much as brands, and 69% state they are very satisfied with the quality of private label products. Ongoing retailer investment and increased prominence of such ranges is likely to further shift these metrics, as private label offers retailers a valuable opportunity to differentiate from competitors. As in previous years, we anticipate private label will have a particularly important role to play at Christmas, with innovative new private label ranges already hitting the shelves.

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