IRI: Marketers Push Discretionary Categories With Increased Promotional Activity

CHICAGO — The vast majority of grocery categories (88%) experienced increased merchandising activity in 2009, as marketers experimented with ways to provide value without lowering price, according to a new Information Resources Inc. Times & Trends report.

CHICAGO — The vast majority of grocery categories (88%) experienced increased merchandising activity in 2009, as marketers experimented with ways to provide value without lowering price, according to a new Information Resources Inc. Times & Trends report. (Click here for the complete report. [2])

Temporary price reductions were applied in 75% of categories with increased merchandising activities, compared with 53% in 2008; displays by 72% of categories compared with 52%; and feature and displays by 66% up from 50%.

Butter experienced the biggest jump in merchandising activity, with an increase of 4.5 points vs. the prior year, followed by bottled water with a 2.9-point increase.

Carbonated beverages were most frequently merchandised (73% of volume), followed by chocolate candy (65%), butter (61%), sports drinks (61%) and salty snacks (61%).

“CPG marketers are leveraging merchandising to raise the profile of discretionary and other struggling categories in hopes of spurring sales in a tight economy,” according to the report.

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