How Folgers roasts Starbucks, Green Mountain
The JM Smucker brand is tops in US supermarkets -- by far. Not bad for a 163-year-old name.
Folgers, which is owned by JM Smucker (SJM), controlled 15.6% of the U.S. market by volume from May through July. Kraft's (KRFT) Maxwell House, which coffee aficionados hate as much as Folgers, had a 10% share. Private-label brands came in third, then followed by Green Mountain with a paltry 4.3% and Starbucks with 3.3%.
That's not too shabby for a 163-year-old brand, which also topped the 2013 Harris Poll EquiTrend rankings of coffee brands.
Businessweek noted that volumes of Folgers climbed 4% from May to July, helped by a clever jingle-writing contest. Smucker's coffee sales are rebounding from the last fiscal year when they were $2.3 billion, little changed from the 2011 period but 1.9% higher than in fiscal 2009.
Besides Folgers, Smucker also makes Dunkin' Donuts (DNKN) packaged coffee, sales of which increased 6% during the recent quarter. CEO Richard Smucker told analysts during the recent earnings conference call that the company's Cafe Pilon brand made "solid gains," the publication says.
Folgers, though, can't rest on its laurels. Starbucks and Green Mountain are eager to expand their footholds in the U.S. and overseas. Single-cup coffee sales such as those used in Keurig K-cup machines are also soaring, hitting $1.8 billion in 2012. That's an increase of 82% from the previous year, according to Packaged Facts. That growth rate is expected to slow to 28% to 29% between 2012 and 2016.
Jonathan Berr does not own shares of the listed stocks. Follow him on Twitter @jdberr.
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