From May to August, the BBQ season represents a massive opportunity for retailers, with sun-starved Irish shoppers unable to resist a spot of al fresco dining whenever the opportunity presents itself. Peter Stears reports on the latest trends and bestsellers within the category
15 May 2017
AT A GLANCE: BBQ FOODS
- Barbecue is the number two event* in the grocery calendar, after Christmas, presenting a massive retail opportunity from May to August
- Research shows that 73% of shoppers** who hold a barbecue buy a side dish
- Big Al’s is the number one brand in frozen beef burgers and number two brand in frozen poultry (Source: Nielsen MAT w/e 26/03/2017)
- The success of events such as the annual Big Grill Fest – to be held this year in Dublin’s Herbert Park between 17 – 20 August – demonstrates the enduring popularity of barbecues here. According to The Irish Times, “’low and slow’ cooking takes centre stage at the fourth Big Grill festival, with added pigs’ heads, ‘sexed up shwarma’ and craft beers”
Ireland may not be known around the world for its weather, but still there’s nothing like a mild summer’s evening here. Despite the unreliable weather, Irish people are good at springing into action at a moment’s notice for a barbecue lunch or dinner.
As our weather is so unpredictable, it can be challenging planning a barbecue in advance and more often than not the weather will change and the barbecue will be cancelled.
That’s why spontaneous barbecuing is so prolific in Ireland. During the summer months we can all wake up to an unexpected day of glorious sunshine and Mediterranean style warmth and it is on these days that barbecues are quickly planned and the invites sent out in a hurry.
A barbecue in Ireland is not just another meal, it’s an occasion. Gathering the family or friends around to the house to cook together and enjoy the weather is regarded by most people as quality time spent.
Beef burgers, sausages, chicken, corn, jacket potatoes, the list goes on, all equally delicious sizzling in the summer time sun. What you don’t want to happen is to find when you go to the supermarket to source all of these ingredients is that they aren’t there, there isn’t enough, or they are sold-out.
On a hot day, it’s a common sight for supermarkets and convenience stores to be ransacked of barbecue products by tea-time; which is good news for the retailer, but if stock levels aren’t efficient then it can impact poorly on future business. For this reason alone It is vital that retailers have the right stock at the right time, and plenty of it.
BBQs don’t just begin and end at the meat counter, a lot of preparation goes into a barbecue and it is important that every aspect, every ingredient is met.
Condiments, sauces, pre-packs and sides come together for a perfect al fresco meal. As barbecues are often group activities expect people to be making purchases in bulk.
The summer is a fantastic opportunity for retailers to increase turnover and see stock roll off their shelves. A single positive referral from a customer can be an extremely powerful tool in driving feet through the door.
If a customer knows they can get quality ingredients and have all of their needs met at your supermarket then trust is born and loyalty develops and so this month we highlight the essentials all retailers should have in stock to prevent disappointment when the inevitable heatwave hits.
‘You know who put the ‘B’ in BBQ’
Johnston Mooney & O’Brien’s Bundys is one of the leading bakers of hamburger buns, hot dog rolls and morning goods in Europe.
Bundys is famous throughout Ireland, with the brand being synonymous for producing high quality, tasty and consistent buns and rolls. Indeed, the recognised quality of its bakery products has established the Bundys brand as an innovator and market leader in Ireland.
The Bundy Bakery operates using a unique specialised American high tech sponge and dough system; which allows the company to achieve a high quality and consistent range of products, made with ‘The Original American Recipe’.
Bundys is confident that its high quality and everyday freshness delivers the best bun for your business!
The Bundys range compromises Bundys Original; Bundys Seeded; Bundys Supers; Bundys Floury Baps; and Bundys Hot Dogs.
An infusion of flavour
The John West brand is synonymous with quality fish. John West now offers an extensive range of innovations, and believes No Drain Infusions is just the product to stock to meet your shoppers’ needs when they look for a tasty and easy way to eat fish, as part of an active healthy lifestyle.
No Drain Infusions are tubs of fish infused with carefully selected herbs and spices. They are available in eight tuna and two salmon variants.
Consumers just need to add them onto a summery salad, a vibrant pasta recipe or an exotic noodle dish, to enjoy a tasty meal full of fish goodness, that’s so easy to use.
John West is supporting this range of products with a heavy social media campaign where consumers will get to discover new easy recipes, a heavy TV campaign, and sampling throughout the year.
The brand concludes: “So go on! Join us in bringing ‘fish goodness’ to your customers with John West No Drain Infusions range.”
It hasn’t happened overnight, but Irish consumers are certainly busy joining the world’s love affair with chillies. Hot sauces have been growing rapidly in Ireland and are becoming essential purchases for the adventurous at BBQ time. The Wexford-based Thai Gold brand (thaigold.eu) has started bringing one of the world’s most popular hot sauces to Ireland.
SriRacha Sauce, named for the Thai fishing village where it was first made, has grown to become one of the world’s top three hot sauces. A simple blend of chillies, garlic, salt and sugar, the sauce is renowned for the smooth hotness and ability to go with anything, but it is probably most famous for SriRacha Wings which can be seen on menus all over the country. A Google search for SriRacha BBQ has more than half a million pages, so recipes for using the sauce are only a click away for consumers looking to spice up the summer.
The unique printed clear squeezy bottle with a green lid is part of the distinctiveness of this famous sauce and clearly sets it apart on the shelf. Thai Gold sticks to its quality traditional Thai ethos with SriRacha Sauce so it naturally comes certified gluten free and free from anything artificial.
Fancy a bit on the side?
Barbecue is the number two event* in the grocery calendar, after Christmas, presenting a massive retail opportunity from May to August. Irish barbecue season has already begun and whether the sun is out or not – we are getting family and friends together sharing food and having fun.
Research shows that 73% of shoppers** who hold a barbecue buy a side dish. Uncle Ben’s Ready to Heat rice range is an ideal side dish for barbecues, and the brand will launch a heavyweight campaign this summer bringing rice to the heart of barbecues across Ireland. Uncle Ben’s has launched a full promotional and advertising campaign to bring this to life during summer through out-of-home (OOH), digital, social, in-store promotion, experiential and sampling.
Activity includes the side guide Uncle Ben’s has created, offering recipe inspiration for the perfect summer barbecue and a series of videos offering barbecue hacks and tips on the Uncle Ben’s Facebook page that will run across the summer. Hence, positioning Uncle Ben’s as a hub of useful resources for barbecue-ers nationwide. Finally, in-store activity will speak to consumers right at the point of purchase.
Eavan Hayes, brand manager, Mars Food said: “We are committed to making rice meals exciting and accessible, and positioning Uncle Ben’s Ready to Heat rice as the perfect side dish for barbecues is a great way of opening up the category to even more meal occasions. We have been developing the Ready to Heat range over the last year creating new flavours in response to consumer trends and preferences. The range is growing in popularity and we think that will open the category up to even more meal occasions.”
The Uncle Ben’s Ready to Heat range includes classics like Long Grain, Basmati, Wholegrain, Mexican and Pilau, while the new Rice & Grains range includes Wholegrain & Quinoa, 5 Whole grains, Rice Medley, Wholegrain & Quinoa – Tomato & Basil, Wholegrain & Quinoa Pinto Bean & Chilli and Wholegrain & Quinoa Soy & Ginger. Uncle Ben’s Ready to Heat offers simple, easy and tasty side dishes – the perfect addition to any BBQ.
*(Source: IGD April 2014)
**(Source: www.conveniencestore.co.uk ‘How to get hot sales this BBQ season’)
Gourmet burger experience at home
Big Al’s is the number one brand in frozen beef burgers and number two brand in frozen poultry.* (Source: Nielsen MAT w/e 26/03/2017). Big Al’s takes inspiration from the best of American eating to bring consumers products they will love. Over the past 20 years, Big Al’s has positioned itself as an innovative and progressive brand bringing new consumers into the frozen foods market. The brand’s success is due to the continued commitment to innovation and superior product quality, as well as a dedication to meeting and exceeding the needs and wants of Irish consumers. In 2015, Big Al’s introduced a range of whole muscle chicken products, made with no added water.
In 2017, Big Al’s is bringing a new range of innovative beef burgers to the market using only 100% Irish quality beef. Big Al’s wants consumers to be able to replicate the gourmet burger experience at home. The new range consists of three new products, the Prime Burger, the Sundried Tomato Burger and the Bacon and Beef Burger, while also improving the recipe on some classic favourites, Homestyle Burgers. The Prime Burger is a large 5oz patty made with prime cuts of chuck and brisket beef and just a touch of smoked sea salt to unlock the best burger action.
To celebrate the launch, Big Al’s will be undertaking a massive nationwide in-store and experiential sampling campaign. Big Al’s Food Truck will be popping up at some of Ireland’s great events across the country, as well as retailer car parks, making it really easy for consumers to taste the new gourmet burgers. The fun will continue online where there will be lots of prizes to be won and great ways for consumers to get involved. For more information check out the website, www.bigals.ie.