Introducing myself to private label

Reflecting on my time at Store Brands so far and looking ahead at what's next.
Zachary Russell
Associate Editor
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Prior to joining Store Brands in August of last year, I didn’t know a whole lot about the world of private label. When shopping at my local Kroger or Meijer, I never put much thought into the development, marketing and overall brand strategy of the store’s own brand products. Ignorantly, I never stopped to consider that maybe these products aren’t “generic alternatives” at all.

Nearly nine months into my role as associate editor at Store Brands, I’ve learned more than I could have imagined about private label by covering the industry everyday. This knowledge has without a doubt influenced the way I look at products and shop in my personal life, and given me a new appreciation for store brand products.

It’s always fun to see something on the store shelf that I wrote about on the Store Brands website, whether it be new flavors of a store brand product I already enjoy, or a new release entirely. I’m now aware of the nuances and details that go into expanding private label offerings.

In a way, I feel that this March/April issue uniquely reflects all aspects of the private label landscape. In our State of the Industry feature, we examined the ongoing pressures impacting the category, such as supply chain issues and inflation. Our cover story is a feature on our 2022 Game Changers, giving shine to products, people and brands that are innovating private label amid uncertain times. Additionally, we covered the Private Label Manufacturers Association’s PLMA Global online trade show, which allowed retailers to detail award-winning products, and industry experts to share research on the latest trends in grocery and retail. The issue also includes Q&As with industry leaders that I’m sure you will learn something from.

I hope that this edition gives you a complete look at the private label landscape. As summer approaches, there’s no doubt we will continue to see new products, innovations and partnerships that will shake up the industry.

As always, Store Brands would love to hear from its readers. Whether it be about new developments in the industry or potential solutions to existing problems, we encourage you to share your perspectives with us, either for our Viewpoints guest blog series, or in the form of a speaking appearance at one of our several upcoming industry forum events.

With your help, we are looking forward to continuing to provide the most in-depth coverage of all things private label. If we haven’t connected yet, I look forward to meeting you!

More Blog Posts In This Series

  • Evolution Calling

    Retail private label assortments are growing and suppliers need to be ready to meet this enhanced demand.
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  • The Value of In-Person Gatherings

    The recent annual PLMA Meeting & Leadership Conference again showed the important role face-to-face events have to an industry's future growth.
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  • Getting Back to Business

    Private label growth, expanded use of technology among the hot topics for the year ahead.
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