Asda has revived its ‘Farm Stores’ brand with the introduction of a number of new products in the Fresh Meat and Produce categories. ‘Farm Stores’ was rebranded to ‘Smart Price’ in 2001 with Asda subsequently increasing the product range. The supermarket, however, has now committed to replacing the ‘Smart Price’ brand by 2018.
The launch has re-ignited the debate about using the term ‘Farm’ in the products’ names, an issue which Tesco also encountered when it listed a number of ‘Farms’ branded products in March 2016. The Asda ‘Farm Stores’ products appear to have been launched to compete with both the Tesco ‘Farms’ range and the growing impact of the discounters, Aldi and Lidl, on the grocery sector.
Asda ‘Farm Stores’ analysis
Brand View has identified 16 ‘Farm Stores’ products available on the Asda website and directly matched 12 of the products to the Tesco ‘Farms’ equivalent. Tesco did not have a ‘Farms’ range equivalent for the ‘ASDA Farm Stores Beef Casserole Steak’ or the ‘ASDA Farm Stores Beef Roasting Joint’.
The ‘ASDA Farm Stores Apples 500g’ and ‘ASDA Farm Stores Pears 500g’ have also been excluded as the difference in size of fruit compared to the Tesco ‘Farms’ equivalent appeared to be significant.
Across a basket of the 12 matched lines, Tesco was cheaper than Asda by £0.57 (2.7 percent). The retailers had the same price for eight of the twelve lines. There were three products that had differing pack sizes and in these instances, the Tesco shelf price was ratio adjusted to match the Asda pack size.
The biggest shelf price difference, however, was on white potatoes. Tesco’s ‘Redmere Farms White Potatoes 2.5kg’ were priced at £0.49, some £0.80 cheaper than the Asda equivalent.
*The Tesco shelf price has been ratio adjusted to match the Asda pack size
Tesco dropped the price of the ‘Redmere Farms White Potatoes 2.5kg’ on 12 April 2017 by more than half, from £1.29 to £0.49. This drop in price appears to be in response to Asda’s introduction of its ‘Farm Stores’ range as the Asda basket total on 12 April 2017 was cheaper than Tesco’s had been at any point since the start of the year.
The move by Asda to compete with the Tesco ‘Farms’ range shows the supermarkets are still competing on price in spite of recent inflation in the sector. The initial offering from Asda was competitively priced and would have been cheaper than Tesco on 12 April 2017 were it not for Tesco’s price reduction on white potatoes.
The new range will help Asda to better compete with Tesco and the discounters, Aldi and Lidl, whose combined market share reached 11.7 percent, according to Kantar Worldpanel, at the end of March 2017.
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