Rustlers has launched a new merchandising strategy designed to enable convenience retailers to increase sales across food-to-go and chilled product categories.

In trials carried out at c-stores earlier this year, brand owner Kepak said it increased sales across a number of chilled convenience categories.

Using new planograms that encourage retailers to site chilled food-to-go and ready meals on the same bay, one retailer saw sales of chilled food-to-go increase by almost 59% while sales of chilled ready meals rose by 50% in another store.

Rusters’ shopper research shows that 48% of micro-snacking occassions take place at lunch which explains why Rustlers is advicing retailers to encourage consumers to shop the whole fixture with drinks at the top of the shelf leading down to sandwiches, micro-snacks, pies and pastries and chilled snacks.

Kepak Convenience Foods’ marketing and business development director Adrian Lawlor said: “The insights we’ve gained, coupled with working closely with retailers who have very different store formats, have enabled us to develop detailed food to go and chilled ready meals planograms, to deliver merchandising excellence on-shelf.

“This in turn should improve the ease of shop for convenience shoppers, with all the categories which compete for the same occasion merchandised all together on-shelf.”

Retailer Sean Dhadday, owner of Costcutter Fishley Lane, in Walsall, worked with Rustlers to re-merchandise his entire food to go and chilled food display.

He said: “Retailers are creatures of habit and are often reluctant to embrace change but my advice is listen to the experts. By making relatively simple changes, such as merchandising chilled food to go products and ready meals on one bay, we’ve made it easier for our shoppers, reduced wastage and increased sales.

“The figures don’t lie. To increase overall sales by +39% across the categories we re-merchandised, with every category seeing growth, exceeded all my expectations.”

Details of Rustlers’ new merchandising strategy and tailored planograms for c-stores can be found on Kepack’s website.