Sunday, 21 September 2008

Two Things Product Label

I feel qualified to speak on this subject as once years ago I worked in Quality Control at United Biscuits which made KP Crisps. It has since closed down (draw any conclusions you want) and I haven't seen KP Crisps around for a long time - it seems to be all Walkers nowadays.

However, when I worked there on the crisp line after they had done the KP they then did the Marks and Spencers on exactly the same line, the same crisps, except that they were in different packets, and of course the Marks and Spencer would have cost a lot more. So the only difference was the label - it was the same product. I bet if you gave someone a packet of KP and a packet of M&S and asked them which tasted better I bet they'd go for the latter. A sort of placebo effect, except with crisps.

I myself only buy own brand products as a result of this crucial insider knowledge. As we normally shop at Morrisons the own brand will be considerably cheaper than the branded products sitting to them, and could well have higher production standards, as the factories will want to keep the supermarket order.


D.C. Confidential said...

Crisps: Yum! We hear a lot of references in British/BBC shows about Marks & Spencer over on this side of the pond. If I ever get over to your side of the aforementioned pond, M&S is on my list of must-sees. Great contribution to this week's challenge, Bev!

Irene said...

You'll probably get sued by M&S over this. I'll come and visit you when you are in prison, I promise.

Frances said...

hahaha - loved Irene's comment. My ex used to work for a haulage company and one of the jobs was taking bread around from various companies to others. All the different types of bread were made in various places and then transported around exchanged and packaged up differently - so one factory made the brown loaves and another the farmhouse and so on. It was all sold to the supermarkets for the same price, that of the Value loaves, and then marked up according to how relatively posh it sounded. So the supermarket made enormous money on snobby people and used the value brand as a loss leader to get people like me to buy my other stuff there. Completely cynical. I understand it is the same with clothes and everything else... But I suppose it is one way that rich people pay tax, through buying more expensive marked-up stuff - so they pay more VAT when they go shoppping... There are a few products that don't do that, but not many nowadays. The supermarkets are so powerful. I love their offers - 3 for 2 and all that, because they usually work out to be the same price you can get the stuff elsewhere... but we English love a bargain, and that includes me, so I still fall for it sometimes - We used to have 'made in England' labels shipped out to Lebanon and they used to sew them into locally-made clothes and sell them at a premium. One of my friends told me it wasn't lying, because the labels were made in England... hahahah. Maybe it is the packaging that's KP or M & S and not the contents.