Scotland’s top brands: 9 & 10

Spotlight on the top Scottish food and drink brands of 2023 (excluding alcohol) with 9 & 10

9. McIntosh

IN the face of rising grocery prices, consumers have been cutting back on costs in their shopping baskets, with many finding value in scratch cooking options.

In fact, IRI data covering the 52 weeks to 19 March found that the chilled meal market in Scotland had fallen by 9.7% in terms of volume sales, for the ready meal section.

It stands to reason then that McIntosh of Strathmore as shown the strength of its brand and customer loyalty to once again retain its spot within the top 10 for this year, despite the more challenging trading period at the start of the year.

Neil Macrae, sales director at Strathmore Foods, said: “The good news for Strathmore is that McIntosh is outperforming in the category, both in value and volume.

“Five of the top seven ready meals in Scotland are McIntosh brands and our big, shining light in this would be our Macaroni Cheese.

“We know that our customers can trust our brand and quality and they know it’s from a Scottish family, so the provenance of the brand is a big thing for us in particular.

“And we use this provenance of branding when it comes to our collaborations with other brands such as Mrs Tilly’s, Mackays or Simon Howie.”

The brand has stayed at the forefront of plenty of consumers’ minds this year as well, with McIntosh’s latest campaign ‘Un-posh Nosh from Mcintosh’, which launched in September this year.

Haylay Matear, marketing executive at Strathmore Foods, said: “This campaign ran across TV, socials and out of home.

“We’ve only had good feedback on this one as well, it’s gone very well and we’re very proud of it.”

And while the year may be rounding off, McIntosh certainly isn’t slowing down any time soon as Strathmore revealed its first range of special-edition Christmas meals, bringing together its best-sellers with Christmas dinner inspiration.

Available for purchase now, the range includes Macaroni Cheese with Pigs in Blankets, partnering with Simon Howie, and Festive Stovies made up of leftover Christmas dinner ingredients including turkey, cranberries, sage & onion and others.

Macrae said: “We’re very excited about this NPD and know that our customers will be, too. We feel that the new festive flavours and packaging will also encourage new shoppers to try the brand.”


10. Barr

A NEW look for Barr at the start of 2023 has clearly paid dividends as the soft drinks maker has broken back into the top 10 in the Scottish brands table.

The revamp saw the logo refreshed in a bid to create strong standout on shelf and reflect Barr’s fun personality and wide variety.

Being consumer-centric has also played its part. Recognising that people want healthier, value-for-money drinks, the entire Barr range is HFSS compliant.

Sustainability is another important aspect for many shoppers, and the range includes 500ml and two-litre fully-recyclable PET bottles.

As AG Barr commercial director Jonathan Kemp said: “Scotland has a gem of a soft drinks market.”