Novelty lines and stocking fillers will be the driving force behind confectionery sales this Christmas, Mars Wrigley Confectionery and Nestlé have advised retailers.

Lauren George, trade and brand manager at Mars Wrigley Confectionery, said small novelties and stocking fillers are incremental to the category, with the tube format making up a big part of the segment, worth £17.5m in value.  

Plus, with the seasonal confectionery category accounting for 24% of Christmas sales, Jonathan Smith, senior brand manager for Quality Street at Nestlé Confectionery, said this year the company has undergone a redesign on some of its products to help it stand out better on shelf, and has launched Orange Smarties in a giant tube format.

“Tube formats are worth £17m in the seasonal confectionery category, and Nestlé’s giant tubes range, which includes Smarties, Milkybar and Rowntree’s Fruit Pastilles, have been redesigned to look more Christmassy,” he added.

Meanwhile, with the final two weeks leading up to Christmas worth £164m, representing 21.8% of total season sales, George said retailers should ensure they stock a full range of chocolate products right up to Christmas Day.

“Consumers are willing to spend and indulge more during events such as Christmas, leading to a trend in more premium purchases,” she added.

Ketul Desai, who runs Leiston Londis in east Suffolk, said in the run up to Christmas, he often assembles gift hampers, comprising confectionery, premium alcohol and mince pies at £19.99.

“Gift hampers add to the theatre and display in store, and last Christmas, in two out of three of our stores, they completely sold out. It’s down to a store’s demographic, but it’s worth it,” he said. 

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