The UK: Lard of Hope and Glory

After reading David Benady’s article (MW July 10) concerning the commercial issues facing the likes of Kraft, with its portfolio of products which may contribute to obesity, I believe we should look at Kraft’s action in the context of this country rather than just the US. Remembering that taste and indulgence/impulse are the key drivers of some of the categories under scrutiny, we have to ask whether there really will be a legal backlash in this country or whether it is indicative of US culture alone.

UK consumer needs have resulted in volume and commercial opportunity, not the generation of categories, and all Kraft has to worry about is the management of consumer perceptions about the scaremongering and over-dramatisation originating from the US.

I like to think that British consumers are quite sophisticated and can make balanced decisions based upon freedom of choice – which is what our market economy is based upon. Perversely, in this exaggeration of the obesity problem and health issues lies an opportunity for those companies that are unashamedly proud of their non-health conforming products – products built entirely on indulgence, apparent great taste and “alphabet” ingredients. Pot Noodle, show me the way.

James Wilson (of average weight)

Marketing consultant



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