Sales of soap and tissues soar after swine flu ads

Hygiene brands are benefiting from an upsurge in sales following the Governments national swine flu public information campaign.

News2-tissuesHygiene brands are benefiting from an upsurge in sales following the Government’s national swine flu public information campaign.

Retailers of anti-bacterial hand gels, soaps and tissues are experiencing a sales upsurge following the campaign, which urges people to “catch” sneezes, wash their hands and keep surfaces clean to avoid spreading germs.

Superdrug says sales of antibacterial handwashing products were up 70% over the seven days to Monday 4 May compared to the same period last year, while Sainsbury’s reports its range sold 39% more over the past two weeks compared to the same period in 2008.

Soap manufacturer PZ Cussons says sales of its Carex brand, which claims to kill 99.9% of bacteria and is sold in supermarkets, were up “substantially”. It has increased production to meet demand.

Meanwhile, Sainsbury’s says its year-on-year tissue sales are up 15% over the same two-week period, while sales of Kimberly-Clark’s Kleenex Hygiene Kit have surged by 1000% since the launch of the Government campaign, according to Kleenex marketing manager Marc Zander.

Kleenex has this week launched its own press ads, radio sponsorship of weather forecasts, sampling and a mailer sent to primary schools directing them to the company’s “Sneezesafe” programme endorsed by the Department of Health.

Unilever says marketing for its Domestos and Cif cleaning brands is “currently under review”.

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