Get your brand HFSS ready: Prepare for opportunities and challenges related to this new legislation

22 April 2022
Author: Kirsty Whyte

What is HFSS? 

A HFSS product is one that is high in fat, salt or sugar as classified by the Department of Health nutrient profiling model. As part of their 'Better Health' campaign, the Government announced new legislation to end the promotion of foods high in fat, sugar or salt (HFSS) by restricting volume promotions and placement in certain locations by October 2022. 

In a recent Neilson consumer survey, 47% of shoppers think there will be an impact on their grocery shopping when HFFS legislation starts and 23% will change the products they buy. The changes will go live in October, prompting a different outlook for brands, retailers and changing the way consumers shop. 

What does this mean for brands? 

It’s no surprise that confectionary and snacking brands will be the key players impacted with the new rules on product promotion. Currently, sweets, treats and soft drinks account for a large volume of promotional space in-store – seeing a spike in sales during major ‘sugar holidays’ such as Christmas, Halloween and Easter. With the new HFSS legislation, these products will now be limited to being sold within the supermarket aisles. It may sound trivial as these products will still be available to purchase. However, merchandising plays a critical role in achieving brand sales and the best floor space can really make a difference. Come October, say goodbye to pallets of crisps promotions as you enter the store, no more rows of chocolate promos on the side of the aisles, and no easy to grab confectionary at the tills. Instead, these popular products will relinquish their prime promotional space, allowing new brands and categories to come to the forefront.  

Although the HFSS legislation sounds daunting it doesn’t have to be - with careful planning brands can adapt their merchandising strategies and identify new avenues for selling. For non-high fat, salt and sugar brands the change presents an opportunity to maximise the promotional space up for grabs. Alcohol brands in particular may benefit from additional merchandising space during seasonal selling peaks. 


How can brands prepare for the upcoming changes? 

If you’re not already thinking about HFSS, then now is the time to start! With less than 6 months until the legislation kicks in, the first step is to consider how it’s going to affect your brand. Whether it will present challenges or opportunities for you, be prepared to navigate the new retail environment.  

From now and throughout May, we’ll get you HFSS ready - offering insights and tips on how to adapt your strategy and tackle the legislation. Our experts will share what the future of retail may look like following HFSS and identify opportunities in new sectors for your brand to take advantage of. From getting your category strategy right, to maximising EPOS data and having the right field marketing teams on the ground to do the work in store, we’ll ensure you have the knowledge and tools to approach HFSS with confidence.  


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