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Quality Street downsizing does not signal mass confectionery shrinking, says Nestlé UK

By Oliver Nieburg+

04-Sep-2012
Last updated on 04-Sep-2012 at 17:28 GMT2012-09-04T17:28:06Z

Food giant Nestlé has said that its recent size reduction of assortment product Quality Street in the UK does not mean it will start to downsize other items in its confectionery range.

“This is not kick-starting in any way a reduction product sizes,” a Nestlé spokesperson told ConfectioneryNews.com.

Nestlé had come under criticism from consumer watchdogs such as Which? for reducing the weight of 1 Kg Quality Street tins to 820g, as many retailers have kept the same price ahead of the Christmas period.

In line with competitors

Our sister publication The Grocer broke news of the 18% reduction last week and it has since been picked up by UK national papers.

Nestlé said in a statement that the decision was taken in response to actions by competitors.

“We are now bringing our standard Quality Street tin in line with other tins of sweets which have reduced in size over the last few years,” said the firm.

Last year, Kraft-owned Cadbury cut Roses tins from 975g to 850g and Heroes from 950g to 800g.

Nestlé added that it had introduced a new larger 1.5kg tin of Quality Street for big families.

Pressure from commodity costs?

Confectioners in Europe have come under increasing pressure from volatile commodity costs.

Industry trade associations such as The Association of the Chocolate, Biscuit and Confectionery of Europe (CAOBISCO) have said that EU sugar quotas have constrained the European sugar supply putting confectioners under threat.

Nestlé head of procurement Tim Innocent also told a UK House of Lords Select Committee last month that his company would be under pressure until EU Common Agricultural Policy reforms deregulated the market. (See HERE )

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