Normally reserved for the holiday season alone, eggnog has become an increasingly popular purchase earlier and earlier within the last few years. A lot of grocery stores bring it in as early as a couple weeks before Thanksgiving, just in case customers want to serve it during the meal.
One major Canadian producer claims that eggnog makes up 15% of its annual revenue in October, compared to 10% in November and 75% in December, respectively.
So why is it hitting the shelves so far in advance? “Our customers want it. As soon as it’s available, they’re on it. They love it,” Mariella Aiello, the Village Grocer’s veteran product assortment manager, told the Financial Post. “Why not? Why not have eggnog in October? Why not?”
Retailers who are bringing in eggnog sooner in the fall are finding that it’s the kind of purchase that can add to sales without taking anything away. One grocer referred to it as an “unplanned purchase” in the sense that customers will put it in their cart, even though it wasn’t on their list, but they won’t sacrifice their other purchases.
Lactalis Canada Inc., who produces eggnog under its Beatrice brand name, is predicting eggnog sales to increase 5% in 2021 compared to 2020, for a total of about 2-2.5 million litres. “The start of the season is getting earlier and earlier,” said Vincent Metz, general manager of Lactalis’ fluid division in Canada. Because of the nature of eggnog, no one is expecting it to be available in the warmer months, for sensory reasons, among others.
Some people do disagree with the early start, however, because of the connotation associated with the drink. “Go back to when you were a kid. Eggnog came out in December, not September. It makes it less special,” eggnog enthusiast Cairy Gaddie said to CTVnews. Another surprised customer, Jeremy Vandenbon, comments “it’s way too early, it’s not even Halloween yet and eggnog’s out.”
This may be a marketing move that has some people scratching their noggin’, but the real eggnog lovers couldn’t be happier.
Dairy Central is pleased to have plenty of Lactalis products available for our retailers during the holiday season and beyond. To see what we have to offer, check our product list here.