I refer to the year 1992 when the "Single European Market" (SEM, one supposes!) is due to take effect as most trade barriers within Western Europe, or at least in the Common Market, are to be dismantled.
The UK government is currently investing over ten million pounds in television campaign to promote all businessmen to be ready to take benefits of these great news sales opportunities. With respect of this, all EEC countries crave to increase their exports into a static consumer market.
Certainly, in some sections in the UK business industry there will be winner or looser. Confederation of British (CBI) industry, are already crying foul because to some extent they think that Western Europeans countries will try to buy the UK base corporations. If it happens, simultaneously the British mergers legislations will deter domestic companies in hope to get competitive advantages over international based organizations. This explains the fact, why so many British organizations have setup their business in the USA.
But how will SEM affect the quick frozen food industry within the Common Market Maybe not nearly as much as it will some other markets partly because of the strong share of the total market held by Unilever and Nestle. Easily the largest slice of that total is Unilever's with their Birds Eye brand in the U.K., the Findus brand in Italy and Igloo just about everywhere else. Nestle, the Switzerland-based Corporation, use the Findus brand in the U.K. and in some of the other Common Market countries. Nestle use the Stouffer brand in the U.S.A.
It has been proved that there is a big difference between brand name and corporate name. This is further evidenced by the variety of brand names used by the United Biscuits frozen food subsidiary, UB-Ross-Youngs, who apart from the brands Ross and Youngs use McVities and Mama Mia--and one or two others--in the U.K. Similarly another U.K.-based enterprise, Rank Hovis McDougal, use the brands Sharwoods (Indian specialties), Tiffany's (pies), Heinzel (cakes) and have now begun to use Mr. Kipling, a brand they have made renowned in the ambient cake sector, for a new variety of frozen hot puddings.' One does marvel what strategy these two major food groups will follow in preparation for the SEM.
In contrast the Campbell Soup Company has given some sign as to their intention because having bought the U.K.-based Fresh bake Foods, one of the top three or four domestic frozen food companies; they have renamed themselves in Europe: Campbell's Foods. Campbell's were already using the brands Ungers in the U.K. and Groko on the Continent, but this writer imagines it is going to be Campbell's on everything from now on.
At least Sara Lee and McCain's have a one brand strategy for Europe. Heinz has, more recently, entered the European QFF scene with a heavily supported launch of their Weight Watchers brand--of course they use the Ore-Ida brand on potato products in the States. Then there remains the mystery as to what the frozen food marketing future holds for the Pillsbury and Kraft companies under new managements. Pillsbury had just given up using the Fiesta brand in the U.K. to concentrate on Green Giant, and may continue to do so in Europe. Meanwhile, Kraft's new owners, the Philip Morris Group, also own General Foods but the Birds Eye brand