A spokesperson for Musgrave Group has said that the recently announced supply agreement between the Cork wholesaler and Boots UK will be beneficial to Irish suppliers, “as there is Irish product contained in the pilot convenience offer.”
The agreement will see Musgrave products, including SuperValu own-brand products appear on the shelves of the pharmaceutical chain in the UK for a 12 month trial period. Three Boots UK stores began stocking SuperValu products at the start of September, with eight more coming on board over the coming weeks. “Assuming the trial goes well there will be additional opportunities for Irish suppliers in the longer term,” said the Musgrave spokesperson.
While the value of the deal is being kept under wraps, it will see convenience foods, including ready meals, salads, desserts, bakery and other ‘grab and go’ products appearing in Boots across the UK. The trial will incorporate two formats: a ‘mini’ format, aimed at smaller, busier outlets (such as at train stations), focused around convenience foods, and a ‘maxi’ format for larger stores, which will offer a wider selection of products.
According to the Musgrave spokesperson, “smaller stores (‘mini’ format) in Fort Dunlop, Warrington, York, Swindon, Colchester and Chapelfield Norwich will offer shoppers ready meals, everyday fruit, vegetables and salad, desserts, tea, coffee and bakery goods, incorporating lines from the SuperValu own brand range.
“Larger Boots stores (maxi format) in Manchester, Woking and Watford will offer the same range with additional items of meat, fish, breakfast essentials, dairy goods and grocery and household essentials.” It is anticipated that further pilot stores will roll out in early 2013.