Jamaican brands expand presence in UK market

Tru-Juice (contributed)

Jamaican brands Tru-Juice, Walkerswood and Ping’s have expanded their presence in the United Kingdom(UK) food and grocery market as their products are now on the shelves at the European country’s fourth-largest supermarket chain, Morrisons.

The 500-store chain has partnered with distribution company Dees Caribbean Imports to bring the products to its 11 million customers who shop at the stores each week.

Dees has been working with Jamaica’s export and investment promotions agency, JAMPRO, to bring iconic brands to the UK for 10 years, and it is anticipated that this recent achievement will promote further diversity in the range of Jamaican products available in that country.

Alexander Douglas, managing director of Dees Caribbean Imports, said: “We believe that securing new listings for these Jamaican products with Morrisons will encourage other supermarkets to widen their portfolio of Jamaican food and drinks. The brands are known for their quality and wonderful flavour, so they are excellent representations of what Jamaica has to offer Morrisons is the first to embrace Tru-Juice drinks and Ping’s Jamaican vinegar, and we believe their success will have a ripple effect that will influence other supermarkets to list those and other Jamaican products.”

Anthony Easton, foods manager at Morrisons, said there is an increase in demand for Jamaican food which influenced the chain’s decision to add the three brands to its outlets.

“There is definitely a growth in demand for Jamaican brands and there are many customers who want to get authentic products. Demand is growing, especially in London where there is a massive market for Jamaican food in the retail business,” he said.

The increase in demand for Jamaican food products is in line with the growth of the UK food and grocery market, which is estimated by food and grocery research organisation, IGD, to expand by 14.8 per cent by 2023.

The global ethnic foods market is also on an upward trajectory, with an estimated compound annual growth rate of 5.1 per cent to take place during 2018-2023.

JAMPRO said it aims to capitalise on this growth to ensure that more Jamaican products are brought to distributors and retailers in the UK and other regions.

Reflecting on the success of the brands in the UK, and the agency’s goal to bring more Jamaican products to Europe, Laurence Jones, JAMPRO's European regional manager, said the addition of the three products will provide greater awareness of Jamaican cuisine.

“Coupled with effective marketing, we believe this should result in increased demand for authentic Jamaican products. We will continue to work with UK distributors like Dees, and our excellent Jamaican brands, to expand Jamaica’s reach in the European market,” he added.

JAMPRO’s mission is to drive economic development through growth in investment and export.

The Gleaner
Published Date: 
Wednesday, April 3, 2019