Getty Christmas stockings

If you’ve been into one of the big supermarkets lately you’ll have no doubt noticed that they have many Christmas items out on show. It may seem early but you’d be wise to get some Christmas lines out sooner rather than later. The reason? Well, the confectionery companies say that many people like to shop early – spreading their spending across the weeks running up to December 25. According to Streetbees data, 49% of Christmas shoppers planned to shop earlier in 2022, and Mondelez says this trend looks set to continue for this year. And remember that some of those that spend early, eat early too so will be coming back to replace any goodies they’ve eaten.

It’s good to see that there are some new goodies for this Christmas.

Nestlé Confectionery is mixing things up with its Quality Street brand. Its new Quality Street Collisions Hazelnut & Caramel Chocolate sharing bar brings together caramel, a hazelnut filling and hazelnut pieces, all encased in milk chocolate.

Nestle Christmas

Great shapes

There is also a new shaped The Purple One sweet available exclusively in a limited number of The Purple One bags. As part of a trial, a small number of Quality Street tubs, cartons and tins will also include the Orange Crunch sweet in a slightly different shape. Both sweets will take on the shape of the Caramel Swirl sweet but will maintain their original flavours.

Jemma Handley, senior brand manager for Quality Street, said: “We are trialling a different shape for two of our sweets this Christmas season. We know how iconic Quality Street sweets are and we have made sure that it is the same great tasting Purple One and Orange Crunch that people know and love inside their iconic coloured wrappers.”

Also new from Nestlé is the After Eight Winter Fondant bag full of iconic London landmark-shaped mint fondant sweets. And returning once more is After Eight Gin & Tonic & Mint, featuring a gin and tonic-flavoured mint fondant in dark chocolate.

Other new additions include the Smarties Candy Cane giant tube and Aero Candy Cane Bubbles. The former contains a mix of red and white milk chocolate Smarties while the latter has an aerated vanilla flavour centre and half-red and half-white shell.

Rowntree’s Randoms Festives are also new for 2023 and for white chocolate fans there is the new Milkybar Speculoos, available in Tesco, Booker and OneStop stores. It comprises white chocolate with crunchy caramelised biscuit pieces.

cadbury snowballs

Seasonal indulgence

In the lead up to Christmas, Mondelez says seasonal indulgence comes to the forefront of shoppers’ minds. Last year, it launched the Cadbury Mini Snowballs block, which became the best NPD launch in Christmas sharing novelties in five years (Nielsen). This year, the Cadbury’s Mini Snowballs range has a new 296g bag format. Mondelez expects the Cadbury Mini Snowballs family pack to drive incremental sales for retailers, as sharing novelty formats are now the highest repeat buy at Christmas (Nielsen).

Mondelez’s advice to retailers is also to stock up on Christmas essentials such as the Cadbury Dairy Milk 90g advent calendar, which is the number one SKU in the advent category and a key line at Christmas (Nielsen). In addition to this best seller, the company has a new Cadbury Dairy Milk (CDM) advent calendar 340g, containing 10 CDM Chunks, five CDM Robins, four Hazelnut Jingly Bells, four Caramel Chunks and one 100g Winter Wonderland Bar. It says this is a great option for those who are looking to trade-up and treat themselves to an extra special indulgence.

Tapping into gifting and sharing is also key as many consumers spend lots of time with friends and family over Christmas. Mondelez recommends retailers stock up on the Cadbury Chunk Collection, a best-selling line which is a key product in the convenience sector and is available in a 235g carton. This year, the product has been revamped with new pack sizes to tap into the sharing occasion and drive value, as well as the addition of a new Caramilk chunk within the collection. With Cadbury Caramilk having driven 17% incremental sales to the category (Kantar) and being a hit with millennials and families (Kantar), the inclusion of these chunks should increase the variety of shoppers coming into the gifting category.

Other new lines from Mondelēz include the Cadbury Buttons selection box which contains four different flavoured treat bags: Buttons, Orange Buttons, Salted Caramel Nibbles and Caramilk Buttons. And, after a limited launch last year, CDM Winter Orange Crisp 360g is now available across the market for the first time

Finally, Mars Wrigley’s NPD for Christmas 2023 includes Maltesers Assorted Truffles (200g); Maltesers Christmas Mix, which is a 240g sharing bag of mini Maltesers Reindeers and Teasers; and Maltesers Reindeers in milk chocolate and mint flavours.

Items returning this year include the Celebrations advent calendar and the Maltesers Assorted Truffles advent calendar and the M&M’S Santa.