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September Planning

September is a difficult month to judge for retailers. There are no obvious sales events. For most people the holidays are over, it’s back to work and back to school. The weather can still be warm and mild or it can cool rapidly and usher in the autumn. If it continues to be mild consumers will still be buying in to all the summer items such as soft drinks, water and outdoor living goods and bbq products. However, if it cools there will be a turn to more hearty foods such as soup, hot meats and hot cereals.  One thing for certain is that the days will get shorter with the autumn equinox due on 22ndSeptember.  The nights draw in quickly after this date bringing with them demand for light bulbs and batteries. I am banking on the warm weather to continue (optimistic!) hence the barbeque picture. 

Grocery

Prepare for a shift to cooler weather products:

  • Soups and hot meats meal solutions.
  • Gravy powder and meat condiments.
  • Hearty desserts: custard, rice pudding and sponges.
  • Preserving sugar for jam making.
  • Increase in hot beverage consumption. 
  • Increase in chocolate biscuits and count lines.

Impulse

  • Soft drinks and water will continue to drive sales.
  • One shots and small juice packs for kids lunch packs will increase.
  • Chocolate confectionery sales will see an uplift.

Alcohol

  • Beer, cider and lager will continue on the summer sales trajectory.
  • Outdoor wines such as roses and light whites will depend on the prevailing weather.

Chilled & Frozen Food

Totally weather dependent and difficult to predict. If it gets cooler there could be a return to:

  • Bacon, sausages, pies, pasties and hot ready meals.
  • Slab cakes, muffins, crumpets and morning goods.

If the weather stays warmer sales of the following will continue

  • Cooked meat, coleslaw, salad items and dips.
  • Multi-pack cakes and fruit pies.

The month will see a move back to Sunday lunches so frozen sales of the following will lift.

  • Roast potatoes.
  • Peas, carrots and cauliflower.
  • Yorkshire puddings
  • Sharing desserts

Warmer weather will drive frozen sales of 

  • Burgers
  • Sausages
  • Grilling chicken

Everyday Non Foods

The onset of autumn, cooler weather and shorter days will drive sales in the following areas:

  • Batteries and torches.
  • Light bulbs
  • Coal, wood and kindling
  • Electrical accessories

Any warmer weather will prolong sales of bbq items

  • Charcoal
  • Lighter fluids and firelighters
  • Outdoor tableware

David Gilroy

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