Wegmans is one of the leading — and the most-respected, according to Consumer Reports — supermarket chains in the United States: “Our roots go back to 1916, and we’ve hit many, many milestones that have gained attention in the supermarket industry since then. Wegmans is now a company with nearly 45,000 employees who serve millions of customers at over 85 stores (and still growing) in 6 states.”
Wegmans is a big believer in private brands and is considered an innovator in this field. As Denise Leathers reports for Frozen & Refrigerated Buyer:
Store brands are a big part of Wegmans’ master plan. ‘Their private label is everywhere, and many times there are multiple tiers of private label within one category,’ reports Don Stuart, managing partner at Wilton, Conn.-based Cadent Consulting Group. ‘And the private label always seems to be placed adjacent to the biggest national brand, right at eye level. So they make it easy to buy their brand.’ ‘There’s ere’s such an aura around the Wegmans name, and that clearly helps its private label,’ adds retail food industry consultant Michael Sansolo. ‘The e store itself is so well done that consumers perceive its private label as top-notch as well.'”
However, is Wegmans overdoing its private labels?
“‘They get hung up…by misreading what’s actually important to a broader swath of consumers,’ says one private-label supplier. ‘Some of it is related to trends that are short-lived, some of it is because they haven’t compared conflicting data.’ A bigger problem with private label is there’s just too much of it, which limits selection, say manufacturers (most of them national brand, natch). But even Stuart admits that over-emphasizing the Wegmans brand could become a weakness at some point in the future, though he doesn’t think it’s there yet.”
Click the image to read a lot more from Leathers about Wegmans and other supermarkets.
Photo source: Wegman