CONCORD, Mass. -- Welch's, maker of grape products, hosted its fourth annual "Broker of the Year" awards recently in Boston. This year Welch's awarded its top honor, National Broker of the Year, to Marketing Specialists, Charlotte, N.C.
in bottled juice, refrigerated and Welch's shelf-stable concentrate line, JuiceMakers, the team implemented effective co-marketing promotions that significantly increased display quantities in Welch's Southern Division.
In addition, Welch's recognized brokers for their overall performance or attainment of Welch's category sales plan in several areas. The brokers are judged on shipment sales trends, consumption sales trends, retail accomplishments and other activities.
Another Marketing Specialists team from Jacksonville, Fla., received the award in the bottled juice category, for delivering sales that were 19.7% over the quota, and achieving a 34.7% increase in sales from fiscal 1999. Acosta, a national leader in sales and marketing solutions, was named the Broker of the Year in the spreads category. The Acosta-Chicago team exceeded its sales quota by 2.1% and realized a 4.1% increase in consumption sales during fiscal 2000 while the rest of the Chicago market saw spread consumption decline by 8%.
Acosta's Wisconsin team received honors as Broker of the Year for its accomplishments in Welch's frozen juice category. The Milwaukee market as a whole saw frozen juice consumption fall 10.6% in the year 2000; however, Acosta helped Welch's realize a 13.7% increase in consumption sales over last year and surpassed its quota for the year by 10%.
The Acosta team, based in Marlboro, Mass., won Broker of the Year in the refrigerated category for a 19% sales increase for fiscal 2000.
Welch's is the world's leading marketer of Concord and Niagara grape-based products, including grape juice and jelly. The company produces a variety of other fruit-based products, including 100% juices, juice cocktails and drinks in these forms: bottled, refrigerated, single-serve, and frozen and shelf-stable concentrates.
ACNielsen Now Tracking Energy Bar Category
SCHAUMBURG, Ill. -- ACNielsen U.S., an operating unit of ACNielsen Corp., has announced that its Convenience Track service has begun monitoring sales of energy bars sold in convenience stores.
"Energy bars have made a successful transition from products sold primarily in health food stores to products that can now be found in most grocery, drug, mass merchandise and a growing number of convenience stores," said Scott Keplinger, ACNielsen vice president, retail measurement services.
The $700 million energy bar category has been growing dramatically. Sales through the grocery, drug and mass merchandise channels are up 53% for the 52-week period ended Sept. 9, 2000. The category has seen double-digit sales growth for each of the last four years.
According to an analysis of ACNielsen Homescan consumer panel information, energy bars are especially popular with single men, upper income professional households and households located in large cities. On a national basis, 10% of households purchase energy bars. However, according to Keplinger, there are significant regional differences. "Energy bar sales are strongest in the Pacific region [California, Oregon and Washington], where 16% of households buy energy bars, and the Mountain region [Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah and Wyoming], where 14% of households buy energy bars," he said.
Other products monitored by Convenience Track include candy/gum, non-alcoholic beverages, beer, packaged ice cream, frozen novelties and tobacco products.
FDI Applauds Gray Market Cigarette Law
FALLS CHURCH, Va. -- Food Distributors International stands behind President Clinton's recent decision to enact the Gray Market Cigarette Compliance Act of 2000. The new law was endorsed as part of an end-of-the-year general trade bill signed by the president.
"This law ends what was already illegal traffic of gray market cigarettes in many states and supports federal and state laws that are already on the books," said Kevin Burke, FDI vice president for government relations.
Gray market cigarettes refer to products that are originally manufactured for foreign markets, but are imported back into the United States for final retail sale. Their sale had been legal as long as all applicable taxes were paid and federal labeling requirements followed.
Gray market cigarettes had been considered unregulated products. Consumers easily confused the cigarettes with similar, but heavily regulated (and taxed) product, Burke explained.
As a largely unregulated product, gray market cigarettes posed a wide variety of problems for wholesalers and the tobacco industry in general.
Quality controls and product recalls were impossible because of the complex network of brokers and shippers handling the cigarettes overseas.
Also, the unregulated products carried significant price advantages over the normal stream of commerce and constituted unfair competition against cigarettes intended for the domestic market.