Did You Know? Dec 3, 2013

By Publications Checkout
Did You Know? Dec 3, 2013


Did you know… Marks & Spencer has recalled its own brand mussels products? Following reports of illness in the UK, the retailer has removed from its shelves in Ireland and the UK the following products: mussels and garlic, mussels in white wine, and mussels and clams. Consumers are advised not to eat the products and return them to a store for a full refund. No other M&S products have been affected, according to the Food Safety Authority of Ireland. The mussels originate from The Netherlands.

Did you know… Britvic Licensed Wholesale has rebranded itself as Counterpoint, in a bid to 'roll out a new model of engagement with the licensed trade'? Counterpoint, which distributes to 7,000 bars, hotels and restaurants around the country, has also announced new distribution contracts for Walkers Crisps and the Findlater Wine and Spirit Group portfolio. Commenting on the repositioning, Finbarr O’Doherty, Managing Director for Counterpoint, said: “ Our new customer engagement model is unique to the on-trade as it is based on a partnership approach that goes beyond purely a supplier relationship. […] We see significant potential in the licensed trade and we feel the key to unlocking this is for us to deliver truly profitable partnerships for our trade customers through collaboration, consultation and delivering insights and brands that will help publicans deliver growth.”

Did you know… SHS Drinks plans to launch a new variant to its WKD range? The drinks company will launch WKD Brazilian, a new limited-edition drink under the tag line ‘party in a bottle’. The drink, inspired by the Rio de Janeiro carnival and the Copacabana night scene, will be available from January until September 2014. Debs Carter, WKD marketing director said, “Brazil and all things Brazilian are very much of the moment as we head into 2014 - Lonely Planet has recently tipped Brazil as the top visitor destination for next year and the country will certainly be the focal point for all the footie fans when the World Cups gets underway next summer.” A heavyweight digital marketing campaign will accompany the launch. WKD Brazilian is 4% ABV and retails for the same price as the rest of the WKD range.

Did you know… Britvic plans to expand its Fruit Shoot brand in the US? The drinks group has signed a 15-year bottling agreement with PepsiCo America Beverages for manufacturing and distribution in the US with Fruit Shoot rolling out across 41 states during 2014, up from 32. Britvic said that trading in the new financial year had started ahead of its first quarter a year ago, and added that it was confident of delivering operating profit of between £148m and £156m for the new fiscal year. Britvic currently employs over 500 staff in Ireland and has operations in Dublin and Limerick.


Did you know… A new report by Mintel has suggested that stress levels are rising for one in three Irish consumers? The annual 'Irish Lifestyles' report found that 35% of Irish consumers are reporting an increase in stress levels, compared to 28% in the North. 66% of RoI respondents said that they would like to be in better physical health, however, 47% said they felt buying healthy food can be expensive. 42% said they drink alcohol on a weekly basis, and 5% said that they consume alcohol every day.

Did you know… Data from the CSO has shown that retail sales fell in October, however supermarkets bucked the trend and rose during the period? Compared to the same time last year, the value of sales excluding motor trades and bars, fell by 2.9%. Retail Ireland director Stephen Lynam said, “There were falls in the sales in department stores, petrol stations, chemists, clothes shops, hardware outlets, electrical stores and book shops. Only supermarkets and furniture sales were up.” Lynam said that the early Budget may have been the cause of people spending less this year.

Did you know… Marks & Spencer staff are due to take strike action across Ireland before Christmas, according to Mandate Trade Union? 2,300 employees at the retailer voted in favour of a strike due to the closure of the employee pension scheme. The first of a number of festive walk-outs is planned for Saturday December 7, followed by two further days of industrial action before Christmas. Pickets will take place at the 17 stores after 94% of M&S staff voted in favour of a protest. Gerry Light, Mandate assistant general secretary said, “Mandate has traditionally had a good relationship with Marks & Spencer, however, in recent months the company has made many decisions which are baffling and shocking.” A M&S spokesperson commented in response to the strike announcement, saying "M&S has done all it can to try and move this situation forward, so we are extremely disappointed that the company has been given notice that strike action has been called.”

Did you know… Safefood has claimed that the sugar content of popular drinks is often underestimated, in new research? The organisation commissioned the study in a bid to campaign against childhood obesity. Safefood claim many cordial drinks have as much, if not more sugar than soft drinks, some with five cubes of sugar per serving. A 200ml serving of Capri-Sun Apple & blackcurrant juice drink was revealed to contain as much sugar- 20g - as drinks like Coca-Cola, Pepsi or 7UP. Safefood director of human health and nutrition, Dr Cliodhna Foley-Nolan said, "Our most recent survey of parents found that 45 per cent of children are drinking soft drinks at least once a day or more. The same survey also found that 30% drank cordials at mealtimes. Reducing a child’s intake of such drinks and replacing with water or milk would be a practical step."

© 2013 - Checkout Magazine by Genna Patterson

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