Food Lion Steps Up Private Label Strategy

SALISBURY, N.C. -- Regional grocer Food Lion LLC here is the latest to advance its private label strategy by offering new tiers and product categories. The Delhaize Group unit said yesterday it will begin rolling out several new private label brands throughout its banners this summer.

Over the past year, the Delhaize Group’s U.S. operating companies have been working on an architecture to support efforts to increase private-brand penetration over the next several years. The new strategy consists of a three-tiered approach that includes value, national brand equivalent, and premium brands, the company said.

Smart Option, the value brand, is designed to provide customers with an aggressively priced option on key, highly consumable items, Food Lion said. It will be sold at Food Lion, Bloom, and Bottom Dollar stores, as will the other new brands. The company will continue to carry national brand equivalent items under the various banner names, and they will target the leading brands in categories with quality that is equal or better.

The premium brand, called Taste of Inspirations, will consist of “premium products with quality that exceeds that of any other premium item that Food Lion currently carries,” said Food Lion.

The retailer also has created category brands that will target specific segments throughout the store, including Nature’s Place, the natural and organic brand; Healthy Accents, the health and beauty care brand; and Home 360, the general merchandise brand.
Examples of products that will be sold under the Healthy Accents brands include OTC medicines such as ibuprofen, as well as beauty products such as shampoo, Food Lion spokeswoman Kimberly Blackburn told Progressive Grocer. General merchandise products such as stationery will be sold under the Home 360 brand, she said.

David Yandow, Food Lion’s private brand manager, said the three-tiered approach “fits with the company’s overall strategy, and we really want to use our brands to drive loyalty.”

In addition to the new brands, Food Lion also is undergoing a label design change for the Food Lion, Bloom, and Harveys brands. Product-specific brands, such as Blue Streak energy drinks and Cantina beer will remain the same, the company said.

Each new brand will have a unique look, Blackburn said. The retailer is working with the CurtisAlan marketing firm on Healthy Accents and Marketing Management, Inc. on the Smart Options and Home 360 brands. Nature’s Place, Taste of Inspirations, and the banner brands were designed in-house in the Delhaize Group U.S. operating companies, she said.

Food Lion LLC operates more than 1,200 supermarkets, either directly or through affiliated entities, under the names of Food Lion, Bloom, Bottom Dollar Food, Harveys, and Reid’s, in 11 Southeast and Mid-Atlantic states.
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