In-store promotions of food and drink products: An observational study (2024)

Price and promotions of food and drink products in retail settings are regarded as a key driver of healthy diet and weight outcomes. This new report presents a snapshot of price and location promotions in a selection of stores in Glasgow to explore the extent and balance of food and drink promotions in retail settings.

Key findings:

  • There were a total of 5,804 food and drink promotions recorded – 63% (3,642) were price promotions, and 37% (2,161) location promotions (prominent parts of the store).
  • Temporary price reductions (TPRs) and meal deals were the most commonly used types of price promotions, accounting for 86% of all price promotions.
  • Promotional aisles and shelf-edge labels were the two most commonly used types of nonmonetary promotions, accounting for 55% of all non-monetary promotions.
  • 34% of promotions were on discretionary items. A discretionary item is a food or drink product not required in our diet and is usually high in fat, salt and sugar. Examples include sweets, cakes, crisps, and sugary soft drinks. Meal deals and TPRs were most commonly used to promote discretionary items.
  • The most extensively promoted discretionary product categories were: confectionery (28% of all promoted discretionary items), crisps (18%), and soft drinks with added sugar (14%).


Read the full report.