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Weis Price Freeze Impact Could Come Later, Expert Warns

July 14, 2011
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Weis Markets’ planned 90-day price freeze on 1,600 staple items could bring stability to the Sunbury, Pa.-based retailer's private label sales in the short term but also might mean a PL price spike once the freeze ends that could turn off consumers, warns Paula Rosenblum, managing partner of Retail Systems Research.



Weis Markets’ planned 90-day price freeze on 1,600 staple items could bring stability to the Sunbury, Pa.-based retailer's private label sales in the short term but also might mean a PL price spike once the freeze ends that could turn off consumers, warns Paula Rosenblum, managing partner of Retail Systems Research.

 

"They [Weis Markets] believe their customers are worried about inflation," she says. Yet while news reports spotlight inflation worries, gasoline prices have been dropping in recent weeks, lessening cost pressures on processed foods and thus giving Weis some latitude to enact the price freeze.

 

The negative effect could come after the price freeze is over, however, if prices start to rise for private label goods at that point. “At the end of the day, any time prices start to rise, it has an impact on private label," Rosenblum says.

 

The price freeze will be effective through Oct. 8. The freeze is being promoted in Weis Markets' current circular, store signage and in television and radio ads.

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