January 21, 2021
Many consumer product companies are betting that recent changes to our lifestyle as a result of working remotely are here to stay. They believe the pandemic has lasted long enough that habits changed permanently.
Companies are investing in upgrading factories and equipment for people making more coffee at home, dressing casually, trimming beards, eating more at home, etc.
Conagra Brands, Inc., maker of Healthy Choice, Marie Callender’s and other frozen meals is ramping capacity. They are also revising lines to speed up production of Orville Redenbacher and Act II popcorn. After all, aren’t we streaming movies since we don’t go to a theater?
Campbell Soup Co. is expanding its capacity to produce more Pepperidge Farm Goldfish crackers, Kettle chips and Cape Cod chips.
As many of us know, toilet paper at the office is a much lower quality than what we use at home. Apparently, the equipment used to manufacture office paper products is different from those used for consumer products. In order to ramp up for the higher quality TP, Kimberly-Clark is making a major investment in equipment to produce consumer quality toilet paper.
Kraft-Heinz Co., maker of Kraft Mac & Cheese cups, Oscar Mayer cold cuts and Philadelphia cream cheese are adapting their production to produce more at-home lunches.
General Mills is expanding its manufacturing to produce more Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal.
Proctor & Gamble is expanding their line of beard-care products and Gillette razors.
Alternately, Georgia Pacific LLC makes Brawny paper towels, Charmin and Quilted Northern toilet paper. They don’t have plans to substantially increase their capacity.
J.M. Smucker Co. anticipates more people working at home going forward. They are putting to use idle machinery and retrofitting others to make different variety and sizes of Folgers and Dunkin’ coffee.
We suspect some corporations are adapting a wait and see approach but it is reasonable to assume that if post-pandemic, people continue to spend more time at home, more products will be introduced to the marketplace to support this lifestyle.
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