New backlash forces Spar to put launch of own-label alcopop on ice

Grocery chain Spar has abandoned all immediate plans to launch an own-label alcopop range after an enormous backlash against the flavoured alcoholic drinks.

Allegations that the drinks are being deliberately marketed to children are now rife. Home Secretary Jack Straw has demanded an urgent investigation and one tabloid newspaper has called for a ban.

Spar marketing controller Keith Webb says: “Suppliers are falling over themselves to provide us with our own alcopop. We get offers daily.

“But we suspected some time ago there may be a backlash and have taken a commercial decision not to sell one. In the light of the recent furore, it is not at the top of our list of new product development priorities.”

Spar sells a variety of own-label liquor lines, and has had considerable success with its range of five lagers, called Drought Busters, and its 180-strong wine range.

Supermarket chains Asda, Safeway and Sainsbury’s all sell their own versions of alcopops.

Spar estimates it will sell more than 1 million cases of its own-label lagers by the end of its financial year this month.

Spar is currently promoting itself as the UK’s biggest off-licence chain.

Latest from Marketing Week

PLEASE SIGN IN OR REGISTER. IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and inspiration that will help you develop as a marketer and leader.

Register and receive the best content from the only title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work, so we can make Marketing Week more relevant to you.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team and columnists will ask the biggest questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we will be your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Dedicated to developing your skills and helping you achieve marketing excellence. Find guidance on leadership, professional development and the latest industry jobs.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here