PVM research shows public not scared by HFSS Hallowe’en bogeyman

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Confectioner Perfetti Van Melle (PVM) has revealed new research that indicates the vast majority of retailers are still set on stocking and making space for Hallowe’en-related confectionery, and creating in store focus around the event. And shoppers are still determined to get into the party “spirit.”

The research, conducted by KAM Media, interviewed 200 retailers and 250 consumers, ahead of the first Halloween affected by the incoming HFSS regulations.

Brits are putting a significant focus on Halloween this year 

Three out of four (74 per cent) adults plan to celebrate Halloween, the same proportion as 2021, with one in three (32 per cent) intending to go trick or treating. Of those celebrating, 68 per cent are likely to buy sweets or chocolate to give out to trick or treaters, a huge rise versus last year’s 58 per cent. 

44 per cent of those celebrating Halloween are also likely to buy sweets or chocolate for gifting. And there are additional opportunities for retailers to maximise sales around Halloween beyond sweets and chocolates, with 32 per cent of consumers intending to decorate their house and 25 per cent saying they will wear a costume.

Retailers recognise Halloween’s getting bigger

23 per cent of retailers said they plan to put more focus on Halloween this year, recognising it as a growing seasonal event. 36 per cent will increase their Halloween confectionery range, and 22 per cent will give it more space. However, the research also shows nearly two thirds of retailers (60 per cent) give themselves less than a month to prepare their stores for Halloween.

With nearly one in five customers having already started planning their own Halloween by then, it’s worth retailers being “Halloween ready” at least six weeks before October 31. And with almost a third (30 per cent) of shoppers planning to shop for themed lines up to a month prior, Perfetti Van Melle recommends ordering stock and POS as early as possible.

HFSS won’t spoil the party in-store

The scary for retailers this autumn is of course HFSS.  But on this showing, the introduction of HFSS won’t change most retailers’ Halloween ranging decisions. One in three retailers intends to give Halloween confectionery two metres or more space in store. And one in ten plan to allocate more than four metres. HFSS compliant confectionery will get much less space, with 37 per cent saying they’ll give it half a metre or less.

When it comes to preferred ranges at Halloween, store owners are looking to stock a wider range of wrapped sweets, larger bags, different formats and significantly, with HFSS upon us, healthier sweets. Seasonal themed options and all-year-round lines are also important when it comes to must-stock lists.

“With some HFSS regulations kicking in from October, we were really interested to see what retailer and consumer appetites would be like around Halloween, and whether they were hungry to make the event bigger and bolder this year,” said Lauren Potter, Fruittella Brand Manager at Perfetti Van Melle.

“Shoppers opting for wrapped sweets and chocolates for Halloween is likely to be a long-term shift in consumer preference, as it hasn’t decreased, even with people being less anxious overall about hygiene.”

“Judging by the responses to our survey, Perfetti Van Melle is in a real sweet spot to respond to both shopper demand and retailer needs – individually wrapped sweets, sharing bags and seasonal offerings have been part of our range for some time. We will be announcing our 2022 Halloween line up in the next few weeks, featuring both tried and tested favourites and on-trend new additions that are sure to please. Stay tuned!”

Retailers can contact their PVM sales reps for assistance in, and advice on, compiling their confectionery fixtures for Halloween. For further details they can also email [email protected].