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marmar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-28-09 10:14 AM
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The end of rapacious consumerism? Less is the new more......
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from Minyanville:



Recession-Weary Consumers Desperate for Fewer Choices
Andrew Jeffery Jun 26, 2009 2:25 pm


"Quality is a characteristic of thought and statement that is recognized by a non-thinking process. Because definitions are a product of rigid, formal thinking, quality cannot be defined."
- Robert Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance


Retailers, reacting to the ongoing structural shift away from excessive consumerism, are beginning to choose quality over quantity.

Finally.

This morning's Wall Street Journal highlights efforts by stores like Target (TGT), Wallgreens (WAG), and Wal-Mart (WMT) to reduce their product offerings, limit shelf clutter, and generally simplify the consumer's shopping experiences. Suppliers like ConAgra (CAG) and Clorox (CLX) are also trying to get ahead of the curve, and are reducing the variety of their offerings.

As shoppers become more selective, confronting a dizzying array of salad-dressing options inspires many to simply throw up their hands and go with a brand they know. As one customer told the Journal: "There are too many choices. I just went with Kraft (KFT), because I know Kraft."

This trend clearly favors dominant brands, since smaller, lesser-known varieties will be muscled out by firms able to spend millions on marketing. And while this may stifle innovation in the cutting-edge barbecue-sauce industry, stiffer competition ultimately weeds out the weak, thereby making room for real future innovation. As sales become concentrated inside big, often stodgy conglomerates, nimble upstarts have a chance to move in with new and improved products. ..........(more)

The complete piece is at: http://www.minyanville.com/articles/WMT-TGT-WAG-kft-cag...





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