instore - October 2016 - 44


specialty insights

CONSIDER

Holiday cheese trays

While many retailers are gearing up their standard fare for the holiday
season, the more cheese-oriented among them are determined to remain
distinct and creative, counting on product uniqueness and today's exploratory consumers to give them an even bigger annual boost.
For Skogen's Festival Foods in Wisconsin, that means trying something
new and expanding on it for their customers this year. For Jungle Jim's
International Market in Fairfield, OH, that means doing what they do
best, in a way that only a store as small and nimble as theirs might be
able to accomplish.
"We have a few things in mind for this year," says Jimmy Bonaminio,
director of creative services for the specialty store, which boasts over
1,400 cheeses from around the world. "We're putting our marketing
campaign together right now actually, and we're really excited to
re-introduce these awesome trays - and all of the fantastic and delicious choices customers will have - to everyone over the next couple
of months. We offer cheese trays year-round, but we're always on the
lookout for new products, so if anything interesting pops up, we'll see it
and try to create something fun, appetizing, and interesting.

"It's going one step above, in my
opinion. It's taking the time to
make other people's lives easier."
Michael Losiniecki

"We love creating trays to meet more traditional needs, but Jungle Jim's is
all about the funky and weird, so if we have the opportunity to play that
up, we'll take it. Sure we could just do cheese, but we love creating interesting combinations for some of our other departments and their events,
like beer and wine tastings, and using those as a basis for new concepts."

much of what we have is super fresh and of the moment. So the combination means we can do a lot of things other retailers can't."
That doesn't mean that other, bigger retailers can't improvise or
impress their cheese tray customers, however. Skogen's only started
offering holiday cheese trays at a few of its stores last year - but to such
success, they will now offer them at all 25.
"We've always had a specialty cheese area within our deli, but knew
we were missing the boat on making things easier for the shoppers by
putting something together for them," says Michael Losiniecki, assistant director of deli at Skogen's. "So we tried a couple of different types.
"The majority of the stores tried to keep it at a $20 price point, so we put
$20 worth of retail cheese on a bamboo cutting board and cellophane
wrapped it, and between Thanksgiving and Christmas we actually
decorated them with a little ribbon or a bow. We even had one store
that went above and beyond and did some different gift baskets that
partnered not only specialty cheese, but charcuterie-type items like
prosciuttos and salamis and things of that nature. And for custom
baskets there was possibly a bottle of wine and some Italian specialty
items like olive oils and balsamic glazes, but those had a little bit higher
price point; those were $40 - $50."
The boards and baskets were a hit, he says, bringing in upwards of an 8 10 percent lift in holiday revenue. So this year the chain is going to keep
it up, maintaining the $20 price point that customers found so attractive
as well as providing the option for custom baskets to even more of their
retail locations.
"It's going one step above, in my opinion," he says of the trays. "It's
taking the time to make other people's lives easier. A lot of times you'll
find that the majority of folks aren't familiar with the large selection we
offer, so they sometimes need guidance, and by offering a cheese plate
or tray, you're actually giving them suggestions.

As an international specialty store, Jungle Jim's rivals the major chains
in Ohio with their exclusive imports and thoroughly educated staff, but
though Bonaminio says that they're "a strange beast, and still learning
every day," what really gives Jim's the upper hand is their relationships with
vendors, and that's something that a store of any size can work on.

"There's a nice variety too, there might be four or five different types
of cheese there, so you're covering categories from something like
a spreadable cheese to maybe a bleu or goat cheese. In the holiday
season we typically have a brie, and then you finish it up with a nice
Havarti, Gouda or cheddar, or something that's a little bit more in the
hard cheese category."

"We've built such tremendous relationships with not just big-name
brands, but with all the local and regional, quirky and unique brands
that we can," he says. "It gives us a certain edge, and we love that. You
see it on our shelves every day, and we certainly think that comes
through in the trays that we are able to put together. And, since we only
have two locations, the amount of traffic that each location sees means
that we can move a lot more product a lot faster - which means that

As for spreading the word on these new offerings, Losiniecki says
they'll use social media and and other digital outlets, as well as doing
promotions throughout their annual Cheese Festival in November. But
in the end, like Jungle Jim's, he says that when it comes to cheese especially, it really boils down to those critical interactions and customer
service your staff has to offer for those exploratory customers we all
love so much.

44 * OCTOBER 2016 * instore



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of instore - October 2016

instore - October 2016
Editor's Note - Knowing the consumer
Table of Contents
News - On our radar
Cover Story - What's Driving Retail Foodservice Consumers?
Commissary Insider - October 2016
Insight Insider - Bantam Bagels
Food Safety - Controlling salmonella
Equipment - IBIE machinery debuts
Packaging - Portion control
Operations & Logistics - Inventory software
By the numbers - Value-added fruit
Need to know - Sushi saturation?
Feature - Dietitians: the new necessity
Feature - Peanut Butter Black Bean Brownies
Consider - Holiday cheese trays
On display - New Year's Eve
First to Market
Ad Index
instore - October 2016 - instore - October 2016
instore - October 2016 - 2
instore - October 2016 - Editor's Note - Knowing the consumer
instore - October 2016 - 4
instore - October 2016 - 5
instore - October 2016 - Table of Contents
instore - October 2016 - 7
instore - October 2016 - News - On our radar
instore - October 2016 - 9
instore - October 2016 - Cover Story - What's Driving Retail Foodservice Consumers?
instore - October 2016 - 11
instore - October 2016 - 12
instore - October 2016 - 13
instore - October 2016 - 14
instore - October 2016 - 15
instore - October 2016 - 16
instore - October 2016 - 17
instore - October 2016 - 18
instore - October 2016 - 19
instore - October 2016 - 20
instore - October 2016 - 21
instore - October 2016 - 22
instore - October 2016 - 23
instore - October 2016 - 24
instore - October 2016 - 25
instore - October 2016 - 26
instore - October 2016 - Insight Insider - Bantam Bagels
instore - October 2016 - CI2
instore - October 2016 - CI3
instore - October 2016 - CI4
instore - October 2016 - CI5
instore - October 2016 - Food Safety - Controlling salmonella
instore - October 2016 - CI7
instore - October 2016 - Equipment - IBIE machinery debuts
instore - October 2016 - CI9
instore - October 2016 - Packaging - Portion control
instore - October 2016 - CI11
instore - October 2016 - Operations & Logistics - Inventory software
instore - October 2016 - CI13
instore - October 2016 - CI14
instore - October 2016 - CI15
instore - October 2016 - CI16
instore - October 2016 - 27
instore - October 2016 - 28
instore - October 2016 - 29
instore - October 2016 - By the numbers - Value-added fruit
instore - October 2016 - 31
instore - October 2016 - Need to know - Sushi saturation?
instore - October 2016 - 33
instore - October 2016 - Feature - Dietitians: the new necessity
instore - October 2016 - 35
instore - October 2016 - 36
instore - October 2016 - 37
instore - October 2016 - 38
instore - October 2016 - 39
instore - October 2016 - 40
instore - October 2016 - 41
instore - October 2016 - Feature - Peanut Butter Black Bean Brownies
instore - October 2016 - 43
instore - October 2016 - Consider - Holiday cheese trays
instore - October 2016 - 45
instore - October 2016 - On display - New Year's Eve
instore - October 2016 - 47
instore - October 2016 - First to Market
instore - October 2016 - Ad Index
instore - October 2016 - 50
instore - October 2016 - 51
instore - October 2016 - 52
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