A look at what’s been happening this month. Despite the Competition and Markets Authority’s continuing assessment of the potential Asda and Sainsbury’s merger, it’s clear that there’s also belief that smaller format stores can compete with their larger rivals. The latest hoped-to-be disrupter is Tesco’s launch of Jack’s to rival the Discounters. We have tested 19 typical weekly basket items from Jack’s this month to see what Reviewers think.
Despite initial wariness due to the ‘basic’ packaging - 16 of the 19 lines were given a below average rating for pre-trial purchase intention - once tried, reviewers were often pleasantly surprised, particularly with the store cupboard essentials. 74% of products were given an Overall Rating on or above our category norm for products of their type.
Some lines clearly delighted reviewers. Fortnightly Purchase intentions were above 40% on five of the lines, soaring to 61% for Baked Beans. But, there were clearly concerns on prepared and fresh foods, with below average Overall Ratings on another four products; Lasagne, Spaghetti Bolognese, Cooked Ham and Chicken & Asparagus Risotto.
Watch out for more details of the next tranche of chilled Jack’s lines we’re testing to see if Jack’s has what it takes to become a destination shop.
In terms of other new products tested this month, despite being quite premium/niche lines, they often scored below their respective category norms (only 1 in 5 beat the norm). The more successful lines tended to be own-label product (other than Jack’s) and none were standard lines. It seems that as we begin to hunker down for winter we’re looking for hearty comfort food rather than ‘way out’, risky new products. As seasonal lines begin to appear, what we seek is a period of traditional plain food in preparation for the indulgence to come.