Retail group Pick n Pay has embarked on an overhaul of its brand positioning in South Africa, with the group announcing that it will split its Pick n Pay brand into two markets.

The Pick n Pay brand will move to a more premium brand, while another brand – called ‘Project Red’ – will take on a mid-market position.

To facilitate this shift, the group recently launched a new premium range under its private label, targeting customers in the newly revamped mid-range and high-end stores.

The Crafted Collection by PnP offers “premium taste combined with affordability”, according to Pick n Pay, with an initial offering of 70 products in store, with a further 100 expected to arrive by the end of the year.

For now, the range is focused on food and grocery, but it will soon expand to other categories, the retailer said.

Pick n Pay’s Crafted Collection puts the retailer in a space dominated by Woolworths Food, which offers premium products, often at a much higher price range than competitors.

However, this is not the first mid-tier retailer to do so. Over the past few years, Checkers has made a deliberate push into the higher LSM market through its FreshX stores. In 2021, the Shoprite-owned retail brand also launched its own premium range called Feast and Forage.

While the Crafted Collection marks Pick n Pay’s entry into the Woolworths market, it is clear from the brand’s packaging design that it is also in direct competition with Checkers’ offering.

BusinessTech looked at the common items available across all three brands to see how they compare.

For many segments, it is simply not possible to compare products directly, as each brand has its own “version” of luxury goods. Package sizes vary and the gourmet aspect of the products makes each offering unique.

However, wherever the same labels were used (e.g. aged balsamic) or similar products were available in similar sizes (e.g. specialty cheeses 150g) at the same price, they were selected for comparison.

Because of these discrepancies, however, direct comparisons cannot be made, while prices have been included for informational purposes only.

The items we looked at include:

Aged balsamic vinegar

Various cheeses

Special teas

Kalamata olives

Oat crackers

Extra virgin olive oil

Khatnia crackers.

Premium sauces

White melted chocolate

Pick n Pay v Woolworths

From the above, it can be seen that Crafted Collection is generally more closely related to Forage and Feast. However, where it competes more directly with Woolworths is in fresh produce – something the Checkers brand does not move into.

We looked at a few items where there were strong similarities between the Crafted Collection and Woolworths Food in the fresh produce segment:

Tender broccoli with lemon and garlic butter

Tender broccoli

Very thin green beans

Tray with tangerines

Baby Portabellini Mushrooms

A bag of pitted lemons

Double yogurt

Read: Shopping price war 2022: Woolworths vs Checkers vs Pick n Pay vs Spar vs Food Lovers

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