School’s in!

As back to school season rolls around once again, make sure you are fully prepared and ready for the new year with a variety of convenient and healthy lunchbox options for time-pressured parents. Julia O’Reilly reports


Brand Central

21 July 2021 | 0

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Health and nutrition, convenient packaging and value-for-money are all key considerations for time-pressured parents when packing the all-important school lunchbox. It won’t be long until the new term rolls around again, which means products that tick those boxes will once again be in high demand.

Expensive textbooks and uniforms make the back-to-school period a costly time for parents. In fact, 27% or parents have found themselves in debt to cover back to school costs for their children. This is according to a survey of 948 parents of school-going children by i-Reach Insights for the Irish League of Credit Unions (ICLU). It found the average debt parents find themselves in to cover the costs of going back to school is €397, with parents now spending around €1,467 per secondary school child (up €68) and €1,123 per primary school child (up €174). With so many payments to make, securing value for money at the start of the school year is crucial for parents.

“The most popular items in Irish kids’ lunchboxes are still kids’ yoghurt and grapes, just like pre-Covid” – Shopper Intelligence

As well as keeping costs low, these days parents want nutritious, brain-boosting foods to help their child get the most out of their school day. Parents have high nutritional expectations when it comes to feeding their children. And for good reason. With child obesity on the rise, Irish parents are paying close attention to what they put on their children’s plates. Levels of sugar, salt and fat in products which target children are under scrutiny. Many brands have responded to this interest by producing healthier alternatives to traditional sweet and savoury products. The brands commanding attention reassure parents of the nutritional and natural value of their products. A Euromonitor report published in January 2021 found that a rising number of consumers in Ireland have been looking to reduce their fat, salt and sugar intake.

The start of a new school term in September is often when parents try out new brands and innovations. If they prove a hit, these products often end up becoming repeat purchases in kids’ lunchboxes throughout the academic year. Retailers must ensure they have all their bases covered when it comes to lunchbox fillers, which is why ShelfLife is taking a closer look at the category this month.

Take your best shot!

Kids will love the playful, colourful packs of the new Actimel for Kids drinks

With the back-to-school period just around the corner, Actimel has launched a new Actimel for Kids beverage in two delicious flavours, Strawberry Banana and Peach.

Every shot of Actimel is bursting with 10 billion l.casei cultures. Actimel for Kids is rich in vitamins B6 and D to help support the normal function of the immune system and a source of calcium. Consumers can enjoy Actimel as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle; just shake it up and drink it down and give the day your best shot!

A new lunchbox hero, the launch comes at a time when consumers’ awareness and knowledge around immune support has increased.

The Actimel brand that has always been famous for supporting the immune system has experienced phenomenal growth over the last year with value growth of +12% MAT with the 12-pack Actimel format seeing growth of +24% as people trade up to stock more Actimel in their fridge*.

*(Source: MAT Nielsen up to 25 May 2021)

“Apples, pears and citrus fruits remain in the top 10 products within Irish kids’ lunchboxes” – Shopper Intelligence

On a roll

Cuisine de France recently relaunched the new and improved Le Parisien baguette and the Le Demi roll

Cuisine de France, the number one producer of French bread and pastries, recently relaunched the new and improved Le Parisien baguette and the Le Demi roll. Sticking to its unique and original recipe, Cuisine de France has refined the recipe to give consumers that perfect baguette, like they’ve just walked out of a boulangerie!

Keeping true to its original ingredients, Cuisine de France has perfected the bread’s golden brown, crispy crust and unmistakable light, fluffy velvet centre.

Now that summer is over, it might be time for parents to dust down the lunch boxes and start thinking about going back to school again. For those who are wondering how to fill the lunch box; everyone loves crusty, delicious French bread from Cuisine de France. Whether simply served with ham, lashings of good Irish butter or dressed up with some cheese, tomato, and cucumber there are so many ways to fill that lunch box.

“Sandwich ingredients (butter/margarine and pre-packaged cheese) are less often used for the children’s lunchbox occasion” – Shopper Intelligence

Quality chocolate on the go

At 100 kcals each and individually wrapped, Duplo is a delicious on-the-go treat for any time of the day

Ferrero UK is reinvigorating the chocolate biscuit category with the launch of a new hazelnut and milk chocolate biscuit bar, Duplo. The biscuit bar features two delicate layers of crispy wafer, sandwiched between a smooth hazelnut centre and coated in delicious milk chocolate, and looks to capitalise on the success of Ferrero’s previous biscuit brands – Nutella B-Ready and Nutella Biscuits. At 100 kcals each and individually wrapped, Duplo is a tasty on-the-go treat for any time of the day.

Thanks to Ferrero’s heritage and expertise in creating high-quality chocolate, Duplo enters the category as a more premium option when compared to current products available. This is evidenced by Duplo being a best seller in Germany since its launch in 1964, with early consumer testing in the UK and Ireland showing a wide appeal across age groups, particularly amongst adults aged 24-45, due to its distinctive nutty taste and flavour, and its creamy texture.

Levi Boorer, customer development director at Ferrero, said: “The initial positive consumer response already shows a strong opportunity for retailers to shake up their chocolate biscuit fixture with this new launch. The varied product formats and pack sizes give Duplo appeal across a number of different shopper missions, both enabling retailers to offer something new as on-the-go purchases return, as well as larger multipacks that allow people to manage their treating ahead of time and around the working week. Duplo is perfect for shoppers wanting to enjoy the treat at home or on-the-go.”

Duplo is available in a variety of pack formats across supermarkets now, and to help drive awareness of the launch Ferrero is running a multi-media campaign spanning print and digital media. In addition to this, POS units are also available for retailers that wish to create some in-store theatre and excitement around the launch.

“Parents have new favourites, too. Crackers and crispbreads and cereal bars/breakfast biscuits are now in more kids’ lunchboxes than before” – Shopper Intelligence

Personal touch

Kellogg’s new on-pack promotion will bring a little magic to the breakfast table for all ages

Kellogg is getting personal with its latest on-pack promotion, which offers consumers the chance to create their own personalised cereal box sleeve. The new initiative is sure to surprise and delight cereal fans of all ages by bringing some magic to the breakfast table.

With summer drawing to a close and fresh starts coming in September, the new on-pack promotion is here to bring a smile to shoppers and their loved one’s mornings.

All consumers need to do to become the star of their own cereal box, is to simply pick up two promotional packs of Coco Pops, Rice Krispies, Corn Flakes and W.K Kellogg by Kids and enter the unique code inside into and create their own personalised cereal box cover. Consumers can then choose from their favourite cereal, a selection of fun facts like favourite colour, hobbies and more that best describe them or their loved one to really bring the personalisation to life. Finally, they just need to upload a great picture that will be proudly displayed on the breakfast table.

The promotion is open from 19 July to 28 November and will make the perfect memento to mark back to school or college, or a new routine*.

*(UK, ROI, and MT only. 18+ only. From 19.07.21 to 28.11.21. Personalised Box Cover recipients must be aged 6+ (18+ for Crunchy Nut). For terms and conditions, see back of pack)

Support your immune system

MiWadi 0% Sugar is now fortified with Vitamin D

This summer, MiWadi is delighted to announce that every bottle of its 0% Sugar range is now fortified with Vitamin D, which supports families’ immune systems. Vitamin D is an important part of our diets as it helps support general health, growth, and development, but it can be difficult to achieve the recommended daily intake of 5 µg. It has been reported that Vitamin D deficiency is very prevalent in Ireland.*

MiWadi makes the water that everyone needs to drink each day extra delicious and refreshing. The brand’s 0% Sugar range contains no more than five calories per glass and is available in four fruity flavours: Orange, Apple & Pear, Apple Berry and Blackcurrant.

The Irish brand has continued to grow from strength to strength in the marketplace. From humble beginnings in 1927, MiWadi has been a fruity and flavoursome part of childhood in Ireland for 94 years and has always remained relevant to Irish families with a wide range of flavours in its Regular, No Added Sugar, 0% Sugar and Drops ranges. MiWadi is still produced in Dublin to this day.

MiWadi continues to grow year-on-year maintaining its number one position in the squash category**.

*(Source: Department of Health Article Reporting on Vitamin D Deficiency in Ireland, April 2020)

**(Nielsen Value Share MAT Total Squash Category May 2021)

Reach for the stars

Boasting an extensive range of market-leading brands, Reach Stationery has everything you need to cater for primary, secondary and third level students

Newspread’s stationery business, Reach Stationery is a leading supplier of stationery lines to retail, office, home, and school. Reach boasts an extensive range of market-leading brands including Supreme, BIC, Staedtler, Crayola, Aisling, Stabilo, Tippex, Sellotape and more. Reach offers competitive pricing with next day delivery and ease of online ordering.

Reach Stationery offers competitive pricing, with next day delivery and online ordering

From school bags to staplers, calculators to copy books and maths sets to multi-colour pens, Reach Stationery has everything shoppers need to cater for primary, secondary and third level students. Reach Stationery also offers great prices on copier paper, till and Visa roll all year round.

To view the full range offered by Reach Stationery, go to If you don’t already have an account, the online account set up process is simple, enabling you to start shopping right away.

Refreshing treat!

Yazoo Kids fits perfectly in a lunchbox and lasts all day out of the fridge

Flavoured milk drink Yazoo has continued to meet consumer demand for taste, which remains a key factor when purchasing flavoured milk.

Health is the other great purchase driver, and Yazoo recently reduced the added sugar in its core range by 20% along with relaunching its Yazoo Kids no added sugar and no artificial sweeteners range.  With its calcium, protein, and Vitamin B12 health credentials, and containing the same natural sugar levels as a semi-skimmed glass of milk, it is an essential product in any healthier eating and drinking offering.

Back to school is a key occasion for milk drinks. Available in Strawberry, Banana and Chocolate 200ml bottles, Yazoo Kids fits perfectly in a lunchbox and lasts all day out of the fridge.  With just enough yummy milk to settle rumbling tummies, Yazoo Kids is a perfect refreshing treat!

The Minions unmissable character design will be sure to attract families to the Yazoo Kids range

Yazoo Kids is excited to launch a digital marketing campaign in the summer months across Facebook and YouTube, highlighting its on pack promotion and partnership with Universal’s Minions. The Minions unmissable character design will have great shelf impact and be sure to attract families to the Kids range throughout the duration of the promotion.

GM Marketing is delighted to be Yazoo’s new distribution partner in Ireland.  With a focus on core grocery categories and a continuously growing team, GM Marketing collaborates with partners to build impactful brand presence across Ireland and the UK. With over 21 years of building brands, the Belfast-based company can be contacted for further information and stockist enquiries across the Yazoo range.





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