Chocolate confectionery maintains steady growth as sharing sizes, big nights in and new product initiatives keep consumers coming back
TREAT categories of all types may be facing pressure over issues of consumer sugar intake but the chocolate market continues to grow.
• Quoting Nielsen figures Cadbury brand owner Mondelez International says UK chocolate sales are now worth almost £3.7bn a year and are showing value growth of 1.1%.
And Susan Nash, trade communications manager at Mondelez International has stressed that chocolate confectionery remains a particularly important product category for convenience outlets.
“Confectionery is a key category for convenience stores, not only because of its scale, but because it is the most impulsive category stocked within the sector. This makes the category really important when it comes to driving incremental sales. 70% of purchase decisions are made when in store,” she said.
The firm sees growth as being driven by brands that are innovating.
“We are committed to further investment in the coming year, particularly within research to understand consumer usage and occasions and identify new opportunities for the category,” Nash said.
Some of the latest Mondelez International innovations have included Cadbury Dairy Milk Medley, described by the company as “a new, exciting, multiple taste experience that aims to drive new growth in small tablets”. It’s available in two 93g tablets – the first with dark chocolate chips, biscuit and fudge pieces, and the second with dark chocolate chips, caramelised hazelnuts and raspberry pieces – and it’s being backed by a £3m marketing campaign this year, including TV ads, sampling, outdoor, digital, PR and in-store activity.
And Cadbury Dairy Milk will bring back a blast from the past at the start of next month when it releases a limited-edition 95g small tablet of the chocolate, biscuit and fruit bar Cadbury Dairy Milk Tiffin.
Also new for 2016 is Cadbury Time Out Wafer, which features three layers of chocolate sandwiched between sheets of wafer. With 111 calories per bar, it is a permissible snack, the firm says.
Mondelez International has also launched 50p promotional price-marked packs on its best-selling countlines and £1 promotional price-marked Cadbury Dairy Milk tablets.
• At Mars Chocolate trade communications manager Bep Dhaliwal stressed continuing growth of chocolate, up just under 1% to reach a value of £3.9bn.
Mars Chocolate has five out of the top 10 chocolate brands and so was contributing heavily to category success, she said.
“But it’s not just brands driving growth. A rise in consumption trends like sharing, which has seen consumers favour treat bags and pouches, as well as boxed chocolates, has also contributed to category sales – with increases 6.3% and 1.9% respectively.
“Mars Chocolate has seen encouraging growth in sharing formats in the last twelve months, with its pouch and block formats performing strongly and helping to generate 6.6% growth, while sales of boxed chocolates rose 4.1%.”
New product development from Mars in the last year has included the addition of Toffee & Popcorn to its Galaxy Duet range and the launch of limited-edition M&Ms Mix, which combines Chocolate, Crispy and Peanut M&Ms in a single sharing pack.
Mars Chocolate’s range of PMPs includes its £1 treat bags of Maltesers, Galaxy, Minstrels, and M&M’s, as well as its large Galaxy £1 block lines. And Mars, Snickers, Twix, Bounty, and Maltesers singles are now permanently available in PMPs with a new RRP of 50p.
Mars merchandising tips include: Merchandise the main fixture well, with strong availability of core lines; multi-face key lines to ensure strong availability; ensure core favourites in pouch lines are in a prominent position, for example at eye level; use all POS materials available; site confectionery items alongside other big-night-in lines.
• Nestlé Confectionery’s flagship brand KitKat is partnering with YouTube in an on-pack event.
From the middle of last month, for a limited time, KitKat and YouTube are offering KitKat consumers access to music, gaming, comedy and sports content to keep them entertained during their KitKat breaks. KitKat packs have info flashes about the event. There are 74 different packs, each linked to a particular break that can be accessed by scanning a QR code on the front of the pack.
Each of the 74 YouTube videos also features a five-second KitKat ad.