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Chocolate sweetens candy sales at drug

BY Barbara White-Sax

Candy is a sweet spot for drug retailers. The drug channel is outperforming food and mass in total category dollar sales, according to data from the National Confectioners Association. “Total category dollars are up 2.6%, while drug is up 3.3%,” said Jenn Ellek, a spokeswoman for NCA. “Drug stores do a great job with promotion, in-store display and multiple points of interruption.”

The chocolate category has been a top performer for the drug channel. Tim Quinn, VP of trade development for Mars Chocolate North America, said that seasonally wrapped chocolate and stand-up bags/pouches are particularly strong in the channel. “We’re seeing an increased consumer demand for bite-size unwrapped chocolate,” said Quinn. Mars recently introduced M&M’s Snack Mix, M&M’s Stand-up Pouches and Dove milk chocolate-covered raisins and peanuts.

Ellek said the drug channel could grab a bigger share of non-chocolate sales with increased selection, sharper price points and increased promotion during the summer months.

A good assortment of higher-priced novelty items with solid play value also can help retailers differentiate themselves. “About 80% of what stores carry are must-haves, but there’s a lot of flex in the remaining 20%. Novelty plays a big part in that,” said Rob Auerbach, president of Candyrific.

Auerbach said novelty items in the $3 to $4 price range are an affordable luxury for consumers and provide large margins for retailers. The company will focus on Disney/Pixar’s “Monsters University” products next year.

 

 

The article above is part of the DSN Category Review Series. For the complete Candy Buy-In Report, including extensive charts, data and more analysis, click here.

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Toothpaste, mouthwash sales benefit from whitening properties

BY Antoinette Alexander

The teeth-whitening strips segment has lost some of its luster, according to data from SymphonyIRI Group, likely due in part to the economy, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that products that promise to whiten teeth are losing popularity.

According to 52-week data ended July 8 from the Chicago-based market research firm, sales of tooth bleaching/whitening products dropped about 11% at food, drug and mass (excluding Walmart).

The dip in sales is likely due in part to the economy, as consumers watch their dollars. However, products that offer multiple benefits, including teeth whitening, are resonating with consumers.

In fact, Mintel recently released research that found that slightly more than 4-out-of-10 respondents (41%) have tried to whiten their teeth in the last 12 months using toothpaste, while 17% have given it a whirl with at-home mouthwash and 15% have tried OTC whitening strips.

“Some of the key growth drivers in the oral care market include an increased interest in whitening capabilities and products that deliver multiple benefits,” stated Gabriela Mendieta, home and personal care analyst at Mintel, in announcing the findings. “Also, many consumers are becoming more aware of how oral care effects their general health, and marketers can use this opportunity to push products that not only help with teeth and gums, but also one’s overall well-being.”

 

 

The article above is part of the DSN Category Review Series. For the complete Oral Care Buy-In Report, including extensive charts, data and more analysis, click here.

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Consumers seek at-home whitening solutions

BY Antoinette Alexander

Do you think that most consumers are using professional whitening services to brighten their smile? Think again.

According to recent research by Mintel, only 10% of those looking for whiter teeth took a seat in the dentist chair for a professional whitening service. Many consumers are actually turning to toothpaste, mouthwash or at-home whitening strips. That’s good news for retailers and suppliers.

“Some of the key growth drivers in the oral care market include an increased interest in whitening capabilities and products that deliver multiple benefits,” stated Gabriela Mendieta, home and personal care analyst at Mintel. “Also, many consumers are becoming more aware of how oral care affects their general health, and marketers can use this opportunity to push products that not only help with teeth and gums, but also one’s overall well-being.”

The research found that slightly more than 4-out-of-10 respondents (41%) have tried to whiten their teeth in the last 12 months using toothpaste, while 17% have given it a whirl with at-home mouthwash and 15% with at-home whitening strips.

The majority of people (73%) are looking for toothpaste that prevents cavities, while some 70% of Americans look for toothpaste that boasts tartar control. A product that promises whiter teeth is the third most popular attribute with 66% of people, followed by 56% who are looking for a product to strengthen their enamel.

“The list goes on and on. … Whether it’s gum disease, tooth sensitivity or dry mouth, there is a toothpaste or mouthwash product out there for you,” Mendieta said. “Oral care products that feature multiple attributes are expected to do well with consumers in the coming years, as it is more cost-effective to buy one product that helps with several needs.”

The relation between oral health and general health may be a selling point for marketers to drive sales and encourage users to widen their oral care repertoires and regimens. In fact, the floss/accessories/tools segment increased by more than 2.8% in sales from 2010 to 2011, more than any other oral care segment, according to Mintel. The research suggests that this could grow further if marketers create ads that highlight the link between oral bacteria and the potential for risk in other areas of the body.

 

 

The article above is part of the DSN Category Review Series. For the complete Oral Care Buy-In Report, including extensive charts, data and more analysis, click here.

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