General mills cheerios, nature valley, annie’s and lärabar npd

The business – owner of brands including Cheerios, Nature Valley and Annie’s – said it has a “ significant opportunity” to grow the number of stores carrying its natural and organic brands, and the number of stock-keeping units (SKUs) they stock.

General Mills made the statement this week at an investor day event in New York, when it said it was on track to hit $1bn in sales from its natural and organic portfolio, which also includes Lärabar and the Epic Provisions meats snacks brand acquired this year.

General Mills is making a major push for share of the ecommerce retail market, which it said currently represents about 1.5% of US food sales but is expected to be 5% by 2020.

Amazon Fresh and click and pick efforts by major retailers such as Walmart and Kroger had led a transformation in ecommerce, said General Mills president of sales & channel development Shawn O’Grady.

General Mills is looking to capitalize on the trend with a dedicated ecommerce team focused in honing its online offer through online content management, precision targeting, web analytics and shopper insights across foods.


The Lärabar brand is being expanded into the ‘bites’ market following the launch of the brand’s first TV ad, which contributed to 19% year on year value sales growth in fiscal 2016 [Nielsen].

General Mills said it was hoping to benefit from changes to the way snack bars are merchandised in store, with retailers beginning to merge the nutrition bar aisle from the pharmacy section into the grain bars in the center of the store.

“ Where we see those merge we are seeing category growth double from 3% to 6%, which is great news for General Mills because we are the category leader with an almost 30% share of the combined category,” said Shawn O’Grady, president of sales & channel development. Oatmeal raisin cookies vegan Cereals

The company is also looking at merchandising to help grow its cereals sales, and that it would aim to grow featured display for its cereals across all channels. Oatmeal cookies without raisins Currently, said the company, the ready to eat cereal category’s share of display is 25% lower than its share of food dollars.

“ Cereal can and will grow with the right combination of news, support and execution,” said O’Grady, “ And one way we can help drive sales for our customers is helping them to better display cereal.”

He stated that cereal is three and a half times more productive on display than typical food and beverage products, adding, “ When cereal gets on display it’s good for the retailer and manufacturer.”

General Mills said it had driven cereal display in fiscal 2016 by focusing on getting the “ biggest brands in biggest display events” rather than focussing high-frequency activity on lower impact merchandising.

Its cereal sales were up 2.8% year on year in the last quarter of fiscal 2016, and the company said it had benefitted from the success of gluten-free Cheerios and from making seven of its cereals free from artificial colors and flavors.

“ We are very pleased with trends in the cereal category and are building on this momentum with more innovation and renovation in 2017,” said Harmening.

This includes making two more Cheerios varieties – Chocolate and Fruity – free from gluten this summer, and removing artificial colors and flavors from more cereals.

The business has also just rolled out new cereal brand Tiny Toast, and said it was supporting its cereals activity with marketing spend that included 40% digital, up from 25% in fiscal 2016. Oatmeal raisin cookies allrecipes Baked goods

In addition to rolling out the new Annie’s goods, General Mills is revamping its Pilsbury refrigerated baked goods offer with the launch of new stand-up packaging and shelf-ready cases that it said would enable it to “ revolutionize” the fixture.

The company is also reducing the complexity of its offer by cutting the number of items in distribution by a third as part of efforts to lower and optimize commercial spend.

General Mills is targeting key consumer trends including wellness, convenience and snacking with a raft of NPD rolling out over the coming months.

Demands such as a simple ingredient lists, no artificial colors and flavors, free from gluten, less sugar, less sodium and convenience had translated into a “very a clear set of growth opportunities for us,” said General Mills chairman and chief executive officer.

The new products – some of which have previously been announced or were mentioned in the company’s full-year results earlier this month – include: Cereals