Tuesday 27th September 2016                 Change text size:

Consumers face hunt for Easter eggs after discounts leave some shelves empty



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Consumers could face a hunt for Easter eggs this year, with heavy discounting leading to some brands being in short supply. The news follows falls in market shares at all of the big four supermarkets.

Speaking to the Telegraph, Bryan Roberts, analyst at Kantar Retail, said, “This is now becoming standard practice. They hit the shelves on Boxing Day and are then on promotion in some way in the run up to Easter, with the lower price points being particularly blitzed.”

He added that the practice was a bit “self-defeating” because demand is high but that retailers see Easter eggs as a way to drive traffic and are “over-obsessed with market share”.

Shoppers are also being urged to consider sustainability this Easter by purchasing products that use less packaging and are Fairtrade certified. Last year, Ethical Consumer magazine and the Rainforest Foundation named Divine Chocolate and Booja Booja as the most ethical UK brands out of more than 70.

The official 2014 White House Easter egg has also embraced sustainability this year, using packaging certified by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI). Kathy Abusow, president and CEO of the SFI, said the decision set an example to others about the “importance of selecting products from responsibly managed forests”.

However, first lady Michelle Obama faced criticism from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) after revealing she planned on using real eggs for the Easter egg roll on the White House lawn. Instead, the organisation urged her to use plastic eggs.

The number of consumers considering sustainability while shopping has been increasing in recent years. The latest figures show that the ethical consumer market grew by 12% in 2012, despite the global recession, and is now worth over £54 billion.

Supermarkets have also been upping their game when it comes to sustainability in order to meet customer demands for more ethical practices that consider resource scarcity, climate change, human rights and deforestation.

In Blue & Green Tomorrow research saw the Co-operative come out as the most sustainable supermarket, followed by Marks & Spencer and Waitrose.

This year, Sainsbury’s has launched a scheme to let customers recycle their Easter egg packaging in stores. The initiative will allow customers to recycle some materials that not all local kerbside collections accept such as rigid plastic.

Photo: ngiurescu via Freeimages

Further reading:

How Britain’s biggest supermarkets fare on sustainability

Supermarkets commit to reporting food waste figures

Why does Britain need a ‘social’ supermarket?

Sustainable spending: organic food and drink sales rose 2.8% in 2013

Buying sustainable Easter eggs can save the rainforest


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