German retailer Lidl has announced plans to remove sweets and chocolate from its checkouts in the UK from as early as next week. Reportedly the retailer has been in consultation with its customers for months about the decision.
It is unclear if Lidl Ireland will pursue the same line of display changes in Ireland or indeed Europe at this time.
A spokeswoman for Lidl Ireland told Retail Intelligence: "At the moment we are working closely with our UK colleagues to gather as much information and knowledge about their trial before making a decision about whether to implement this initiative in our Irish stores. As it's such early days in the UK, we anticipate it will be another couple of weeks before we reach a decision on this."
According to Lidl UK’s research, 52% of parents found it difficult to get their kids to eat healthily, and the amount of sweets at the supermarket tills were cited as part of the problem. In addition, 68% of parents agreed that they are pestered by their offspring at the checkout. Concerns expressed were not limited to health, but also costs, as including sweets and chocolate to the shopping every week adds up. Indeed, 15% of parents said that they spend about £20-40 on supermarket snacks.
Lidl UK managing director Ronny Gottschlich said, “We’re committed not only to raising awareness of the importance of balanced diets and healthy lifestyles, but also to making it easier for our customers to follow them. We know how difficult it can be to say no to pester power, so by removing sweets and chocolates from our tills we can make it easier for parents to reward children in healthier ways.”
Last year, Lidl increased the number of its ‘healthy tills’ to 1200, which instead of selling sweets and chocolate, displayed juice and fresh fruit instead. In December 2012, Sainsburys and Tesco banned sweets from their counters in the UK, however not in the smaller convenience stores. Asda, Iceland and Morrisons have agreed to reduce the amount of confectionary on sale at their checkouts as well.
© 2013 - Checkout Magazine by Genna Patterson