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Planning for January

It’s always difficult planning ahead for January when Christmas is in full flow and all to play for. Difficult but it just has to be done. What kind of month are we planning for? Almost certainly cold, wet and dark. And after Christmas, most consumers are feeling the pinch with many looking to lose weight and get back to “healthy.”  It’s a bit of a back to “factory settings month.” The sales across the store will reflect this mood. There is one event to boost sales: Burns Night on 25th January. Celebrated across the country but obviously much bigger in Scotland. It is also worth noting that January is one of the biggest months of the year for sales of OTC medicines. Here are some categories to note for sales increases.


  • Canned and packet soups.
  • Canned hot meats & pies.
  • Chocolate, malted and cocoa drinks.
  • Tea & coffee.
  • Treacle & syrup.
  • Dumpling mix
  • Gravy stocks.
  • Large packs of salt (snow & ice)


  • Healthy eating snacks
  • Low calorie snacks
  • Cream eggs.


  • Low and no alcohol beers and wines.
  • Scotch whisky blends. Both 70cl & 35cl sizes.
  • Scotch whisky single malts.

Fresh Food

  • Sausages, bacon & eggs.
  • Bacon joints
  • Pies and pasties.
  • Haggis
  • Fresh swedes.
  • Root crop vegetables.

Frozen Food

  • Low cost ready meals.
  • Burgers & sausages.
  • Fish meals, fish fingers and fish cakes.
  • Yorkshire puddings.
  • Roast potatoes.
  • Frozen vegetables if the weather is harsh and the price of fresh vegetables rises sharply.
  • Pizzas.

OTC Medicines

  • Vitamins and food supplements.
  • Cough, cold & sore throat remedies.
  • Indigestion remedies - particularly after NYE!
  • Flu remedies.
  • Facial tissues (see below)

Cleaning & Paper Goods

  • Tissues of all types.
  • Cloths & dusters
  • Refuse sacks
  • Dishwash products

Non Food

  • Wild bird seed.
  • Coal, wood and firelighters.
  • Portable heaters
  • Napkins and tableware (Burns night)
  • Disposable glasses.
  • Rock salt (large bags)
  • Snow shovels

In January sales slow down but there are still opportunities to be exploited. Come out of Christmas revved up!

David Gilroy

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