KILLER BROWNIES STALK CONSUMERS IN LICENSING PACT

EDINA, Minn. -- Killer Brownies, a top-selling, signature bakery item for Dorothy Lane Markets in Dayton, Ohio, are selling like hotcakes at Lunds and Byerly's stores here. The third supermarket company to strike a licensing agreement with the Ohio retailer, Lunds and Byerly's have exclusive rights to sell the dessert in Minnesota.The stores typically sell 4,000 to 5,000 brownies a week, which is

EDINA, Minn. -- Killer Brownies, a top-selling, signature bakery item for Dorothy Lane Markets in Dayton, Ohio, are selling like hotcakes at Lunds and Byerly's stores here. The third supermarket company to strike a licensing agreement with the Ohio retailer, Lunds and Byerly's have exclusive rights to sell the dessert in Minnesota.

The stores typically sell 4,000 to 5,000 brownies a week, which is meeting the company's expectations for now, said Paul Supplee, director of bakery operations for Lunds and Byerly's. Available in four varieties -- original, raspberry, peanut butter and German chocolate -- the brownies retail for $3.98 for a two-pack sold in self-service areas, and $1.99 each at service counters. About 75% are sold at service counters, he said.

Since rolling out the brownies in mid-March, the company has taken out newspaper ads, sent batches of brownies to morning radio DJs, conducted daily samplings at the stores, handed out samples at area foot races and other community events and distributed coupons redeemable for free brownies.

"This is a big promotion," Supplee told SN.

While Lunds and Byerly's have scratch bakeries, the company decided outsourcing would be the most efficient way to launch a new, top-quality product -- and ensure a consistent product from store to store, Supplee said. Frozen batter is shipped in from Ohio to the Minnesota company's central bakery in suburban New Hope, where bakers assemble and bake the brownies.