WAYNE, N.J. -- Grand Union Co. here is installing single-serve freezers in the deli and salad bar areas of many of its stores in an effort to stimulate incremental ice cream sales.
The chain began installing the units in March, and plans to place them in 40 to 50 of its 254 stores, said Rich Perrius, vice president of grocery merchandising. Perrius said the units, holding Haagen-Dazs products, are permanent additions.
"The units I'm putting in are uprights with four or five shelves that sell single-serve Haagen-Dazs bars. We have a whole selection of Haagen-Dazs single-serve items, including the yogurt items. We usually place them close to a Coke or Pepsi machine, also with single-serve in it, back by the salad bar or the deli," Perrius explained.
"Basically, we are placing these machines where we can fit them, either in-line, or back by the wall space, or back by the deli or the salad bar," he said. "If people are picking up a quick lunch or something, they can also buy a bar at the same time."
Grand Union is retailing the bar items at $1.59 each.
Perrius said the freezer units have been well received by shoppers. Making single bars available at secondary locations has not cannibalized sales in the ice cream aisle, he added.
"These units have increased ice cream sales. There is no question about it. But it is a different sale. Somebody who is looking for a single-serve to eat at the moment is not going to buy a six-pack," Perrius said. "Essentially, we are picking up a little bit of additional business that was going to some other class of trade. That is the purpose of it." Perrius said the chain does not have plans to sell any other ice cream products from the cases.