06 August 2020, 08:35 AM
  • As Sainsbury’s launches a new fixture in its cheese aisles, we look at how similar activations could help fine food retailers increase basket spend
Could innovative cheese fixtures help indie retailers drive sales?

From protein-rich varieties to vegan alternatives, innovative products in the cheese category are in the spotlight as Sainsbury’s launches a new fixture in over 100 of its stores.

According to The Grocer, the cheese aisles of 101 Sainsbury’s stores will showcase kefir cheese from gut health brand Biotiful, protein cheese from Arla and vegan blocks from Vitalite.

The activation will initially last for seven weeks, where the featured products will be put on promotion. It’s part of a wider aim to recruit more shoppers into the cheese category, according to Biotiful, which also featured in Sainsbury’s gut health-focused yoghurt campaign in February.

“Retailers are looking to create destination fixtures and features in store as they provide a unique point of difference,” said Biotiful’s founder, Natasha Bowes.
“Not only do these simplify the shopper journey, they also drive cross-brand shopping and increase basket spend. In addition, they bring excitement to the relevant category to deliver growth, so we do believe they will become more widespread.”

It appears to be an increasingly prevalent strategy for mults, who have been promoting cheese and other dairy products even more throughout the pandemic. During lockdown, almost all sectors experienced double-digit value sales growth, with the exception of mini portions tailored to the snacking category, according to research by Kantar. What’s more, data from JS Horizon shows that Sainsbury’s stores featuring the Biotiful gut health fixture witnessed value sales increases of highlighted products of between 12-48% compared to control stores over the three-month period, proving the success of such fixtures.

There’s no shortage of innovation in the industry either, with various brands launching new products, such as Shepherds Purse’s Feta-style cheese made from sheep milk.

The numbers show that there are various opportunities for fine food retailers to promote the provenance, health benefits and innovative factors behind new and existing products. Particularly given the impact of coronavirus, many consumers are looking to try new foods and experience unique flavours, offering retailers the chance to tap into these trends by stocking something different, and promoting products to drive sales and increase spend.

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