CASE FOR COOLERS

SEATTLE, Wash. (FNS) -- Cooler space allocation is crucial to sales, retailers report. In a recent market tour here, SN observed a number of operators offering beer to customers in the closest ready-to-drink guise -- cold.Safeway StoresSafeway units presented beers mostly chilled within the units' beer and wine department. The full 20-foot aisle run of cold case is organized, using decks and the well,

SEATTLE, Wash. (FNS) -- Cooler space allocation is crucial to sales, retailers report. In a recent market tour here, SN observed a number of operators offering beer to customers in the closest ready-to-drink guise -- cold.

Safeway Stores

Safeway units presented beers mostly chilled within the units' beer and wine department. The full 20-foot aisle run of cold case is organized, using decks and the well, by subcategory and pack size.

Light beer offerings are grouped for shopping convenience. Microbrews and imports are likewise grouped in the aisle closest to the front end. Wines are located across the aisle on traditional grocery-rack shelving.

Because it's stocked in a large space, all options in packaging and brands are presented. Microbrews including Alaskan, Fat Tire, Full Sail, Pyramid and Red Hook abound alongside imports including Guinness, Grolsch, Corona, Heineken, Becks, Kokanee and Labatt. Other cachet brands such as Henry Weinhard's, George Killian's and Rolling Rock are also presented within the cold case.

At the end of the aisle the workhorse brands from the major brewers are used to move customers throughout the aisle. Price points are promoted at Safeway in conjunction with the Safeway Club Card.

Outside of the chilled display, an endcap front-end display kicked off the beer and wine aisle with a Miller Genuine Draft display promoting the special Club Card savings.

Albertson's

Cold and colder is the best way to describe the beer merchandising at Albertson's units, here.

Within the wine and beer department, which is segmented at the front end by shelving at right angles to the rest of the store, there are two cold options: a 14-door, reach-in merchandiser brimming with imports, microbrews and mainline favorites, and a walk-in cooler with large packs, cases and additional imports. This walk-in serves as a stockroom and provides easy access for restocking the reach-in from behind; however, consumer access is encouraged through signage.

Entering the beer and wine department, customers see a floor display of Budweiser items adjacent to the cooler. Creating a walk-around island of beer, Albertson's positioned 24-can packs of Milwaukee's Best and Milwaukee's Best Ice, surrounded by Henry Weinhard's six-pack bottles. Red Hook six-pack bottles surrounded another of these islands, where wine served as the backbone of the display.

Top's Market (Haagen Stores)

Top's presents a beer and wine boutique at the warehouse-style units here.

Two refrigerated deck cases form the corner walls. One 16-foot refrigerated deck case presents single-serve brews, including malt beverages and long-neck packs, in the top deck. The middle deck houses 12-count cans and bottles of leading favorites.

The well merchandises 12-can cases along with 24-count bottles and cans and 18-count long-necks, presenting mainline brews from Miller, Budweiser, Coors, Milwaukee's Best and Rainier. Abutting this merchandiser is another 34-foot triple deck with a well. This is the home of the imports, microbrews and super-premium offerings. Of this space, 8 feet is reserved for minikegs of Grolsch and Becks, hard lemonade, hard cider, other alcohol-content beverages and single-serve specialty imports such as stouts and lagers.

Here, floor display augments the cold cases. A 16-foot island was built of beer to present specially priced offerings.

Fred Meyer (Kroger)

The Fred Meyer Inc. beer and wine department is crowned with a refrigerated multideck merchandiser.

Stores within the city limits have over 40 feet of cold beer merchandising segmented by imports and microbrews, premium offerings and economy offerings. The space allows a full complement of brands along with pack styles and sizes.

A combination of two and three decks used within the merchandiser accommodates different packaging heights. Generally, high-velocity items are positioned in the well along with larger case packs. A seven-variety presentation of Henry Weinhard's in six-pack and 12-pack bottles breaks the case-run between the microbrews and imports and the premium beer offerings. This break also offers a visual adjustment between the additional deck necessary for microbrew and import display and the sleek presentation of the premium brands.

On the floor, endcaps tout special prices.