WEEKLY ROUNDUP PRET

FMCG
September 17, 2021

Pret A Manger Cutting 3,000 jobs As Sales Slump Continues

Pret A Manger is cutting more than a third of its workforce as part of a plan to save the business amid plummeting sales. The 3,000 jobs will mainly go in its shops, but around 90 roles will also be lost at its support centre. Demand for the chain's sandwiches and drinks has been hit by the lack of commuters, tourists and office workers in towns and cities during the pandemic. The group reopened 367 of its 410 shops in the UK last month but sales have been 60% lower than back in 2019. This has led to the expansion of a programme of cuts that was previously expected to affect 1,000 people, with 30 branches set to close. This is very bad news for ËśReady to Eat' (English translation), but we hope that the sales slump following the pandemic will pick up sooner rather and later.

Waitrose see's shift towards Organic food

Waitrose has revealed that more of their consumers are seeking out organic food and drink after the pCOVID-19 pandemic led to a growing interest in provenance and animal welfare. The supermarket highlighted that searches on Google for its Waitrose Duchy Organic range almost doubled during lockdown and that interest in organic food and drink has been reflected in its stores and online with sales growing 13%.Research conducted for Waitrose by OnePoll found that over half of shoppers surveyed wanted retailers to show more information about ethical practices on packaging. Meanwhile, three-quarters of respondents said they would like to see more British sourcing and over 44% of people now actively seek out products with less packaging when shopping online. Organic categories which have seen some of the biggest sales increases at Waitrose include chicken (+43%), vegetables (+23%) and eggs (+13%). Meanwhile, 52 bags of Waitrose Duchy Organic carrots, 34 organic blueberry punnets and 39 bags of organic bananas are now sold every hour on the retailer's website. Waitrose is now launching a range of organic British grown blueberries, with it claiming to be the first time a UK supermarket has been able to offer the organic crop in commercial quantities from a British farm. Very middle-class stuff, indeed!

Brewdog is a 'carbon negative' product

Start-up beer company and regular feature on these blogs, BrewDog, has gone carbon negative by switching to wind power for its breweries and bars, with plans to plant a forest's worth of trees in the future. BrewDog became carbon negative as of last Saturday (August the 22nd). The company claims its changes have made it the world's first carbon-negative international beer business. Carbon negativity is achieved when a business or individual removes more carbon from the atmosphere than they put in and Brewdog are looking to cut that down as much as possible in whatever way they can. It looks like Brewdog may be setting the way for other businesses to follow here. If they can brew beers at a negative amount of carbon, why can't the biggest companies do the same? It's very good to see.

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