Value brands in the United Kingdom
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In the United Kingdom, it is common practice for retailers to have their own value brand in an effort to compete on price. These brands have become more popular in the UK with shoppers since the Great Recession caused food prices to rise.
- 1 The big five
- 2 Premium
- 3 Budget
- 4 Convenience stores
- 5 Wholesalers
- 6 References
The big five
Tesco's value brand was originally launched in 1993 as Tesco Value, with distinctive blue-and-white striped packaging. In April 2012 the range was rebranded as Everyday Value, with new packaging and a revised product range which omitted artificial colours and flavours. The original Tesco Value brand had been launched in the midst of a supermarket price war, and targeted a low price point, with cans of beans costing 3p a can and loaves of bread for 7p.
Asda Smart Price is a no-frills private label trade name. It can trace its origins to Asda's Farm Stores brand launched in the mid-1990s, which consisted of products that were offered at a lower price than the equivalent famous name brand product and Asda's own brand equivalent. The Farm Stores brand originally consisted of a small number of food only products, largely frozen such as frozen chips and a small range of ready meals, this range later expanded to include fresh food.
Smart Price products are almost always the lowest price option (known as Our Lowest Price) in a product category in Asda stores. Occasionally this difference is only a few pence, however in others it is a marked difference. For example, a box of Smart Price Biological Washing Powder costs £1.00 while the equivalent Asda brand washing powder costs £2.00 and well known name brand alternatives normally cost from £2.50 upwards.
The Smart Price label was originally a food only brand, however over the years it has expanded to cover almost every product range in the store, including clothing and furnishings with the George Smart Price brand. Like early generic products in the US some Smart Price products lack what can be thought of as 'frills' in the modern brand name or supermarket own brand, for example the Smart Price toothpaste has an old fashioned screw cap rather than the now more common flip cap and the Smart Price range of crisps come in traditional clear plastic bags rather than the foil bags common to most name brand versions.
Asda's Smart Price logo and packaging has changed several times since its introduction. In 2012, it was revised to match the branding of the Walmart Great Value line, but a further redesign in 2014 removed the similarity in visual style.
An economy range of around 550 lines, mainly food but also including other areas such as toiletries and stationery. The Basics range uses minimal packaging with simple orange and white designs. Sainsbury's Local stores sell none or very few of these lines. Sainsbury's seeks to differentiate itself on its own label items on quality and many of the Basics products now cost more than what may be considered the equivalent products at Asda, Tesco and Morrisons. This can range from price differences of 1p for Basics Sultanas to Basics Spaghetti tin, where Sainsbury's price is nearly twice that of Asda Smart Price (the weight of the Sainsbury's product is very slightly more).
An economy brand which sells items ranging from food and drink to toiletries, currently the UK's fastest growing grocery brand.M savers is Morrisons value brand. This replaced 'Value' which in turn was a replacement for 'Bettabuy'.
"Simply Value" is the Co-operative Food's value brand. It has a habit of being a bit more expensive than its big four counterparts, with simply value baked beans currently being sold at 30p (versus 25p in Tesco) and orange juice being sold at £1.69 for 2 litres (85p per litre) whereas Tesco sells it for 65p per litre.
These value brands are not value brands per se but are competing with the big five's own-label products, i.e. Asda's "Chosen by You" or Sainsbury's "by Sainsbury's".
Departing from earlier practice, the chain rebranded their entry level range of products as "essential Waitrose". The marketing of essential Waitrose centres around the tagline "quality you'd expect at prices you wouldn't". 1,600 new and existing products have been rebranded with this name using simple white-based packaging.
Nowadays, even the budget retailers have value brands.
Everyday Essentials is a value brand by Aldi. It was going to be rolled out in June 2012, however it was put on hold after a source close to Aldi said that it looked dated against Tesco's Everyday Value brand, which at the time was being overhauled.
Many of the main convenience stores have an in-house value brand.
Daily Basics is a brand owned by the Irish retail group Musgrave Group, and is an in-house brand which is sold by SuperValu. As a convenience store, prices tend to be high, with a litre of orange juice costing 89p.
S Budget is SPAR's value brand. It is an international value brand, and thus includes some products that in the UK are considered very unusual in a value brand such as polony chubb (slicing sausage).
It is not uncommon for wholesalers to have their own value brand to help independents compete on price.
Nisa's wholesale division, Today's, offers twenty non-food items in their value brand, Today's Essentials. This leaves them as the only company with two separate value brands.
- Chittock, Matt (4 February 2013). "Rise of the Supermarket Own Brand". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 16 April 2013.
- Wood, Zoe (4 April 2012). "Tesco rebrands Value range". London: The Guardian.
- The Independent: Supermarket price war escalates, 05 November 1993
-  BillGBennett.com – Asda Launches New Smart Price Logo
- Dowling, Tim (25 March 2009). "Sales of Sainsbury's basicsrange have shot up by more than 60% - and I can see why". London: The Guardian.
- Grocer of the Year: Morrisons forges ahead despite blips
- "Simply Value". Co-operative Food.
- "Marks & Spencer becomes latest supermarket to offer 'quality' budget range". London: Daily Mail. 16 June 2012.
- "Tesco Everyday Value Baked Beans In Tomato Sauce 420G". Tesco.
- "Tesco Everyday Value Orange Juice 1L". Tesco.
- Bachelor, Lisa (11 May 2012). "M&S launches new budget food range". London: The Guardian.
- "Tesco range halts Aldi everyday development". The Grocer.
- "Lidl trials budget line under Simply name". The Grocer.
- "Our brands". Nisa-Today's.
- "Daily Basics Offers". SuperValu.co.uk.
- "New S Budget Range". SPAR UK.
- "Our Brands > Euro Shopper". Premier Stores.
- "Best-In Essentials". Bestway.co.uk.
- "Today's Essentials". Today's.