Two significant marketing trends are emerging which may have some impact on the U.S. egg industry.

The first relates to the accelerating pace of adopting house brands. Wal-Mart is a leader in this initiative, recently announcing that national brands Hefty and Glad would be replaced by private label products in both Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club stores. In a subsequent announcement, Wal-Mart indicated that McCormick spices would be dropped in favor of a private label. This is significant, since McCormick is thought to market 11% of its production through the Wal-Mart chain.

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The second trend is toward smaller stores, especially in urban areas. Meijer’s, Target and Wal-Mart have all announced smaller stores either as a test or as a commitment. Smaller stores would have reduced cold storage, which could require more frequent deliveries, either from a distribution center or, in the case of some suppliers, increased direct-to-store delivery.