BHoney is a new Australian honey product on the shelves at Coles supermarkets. Its available in a range of sizes and types of containers, and includes 2 varietal honeys – red gum and yellow gum.
Its produced by the ASX listed Bega Cheese and represents a major challenge to market leader - Capilano.
Bega Cheese is well known to Australian consumers, both via its cheese products and its range of spreads.
Its also well-known because a few years back it bought the rights to produce and market a range of spreads from Kraft foods, including the iconic Vegemite and Krafts market-leading peanut butter.
Capilano has traditionally dominated the Australian retail honey market with an estimated 60% plus share of supermarket sales.
It has never before faced such a well-resourced and experienced competitor, and may well have to either drop its prices, and/or reduce its margins to protect its market position.
That won’t be good news for Capilano’s new merchant banker owners, and may be even more galling because they had to fend off a counter-bid from Bega Cheese during their takeover.
Of course, Capilano’s new owners, who have re-badged the company as ‘Hive and Wellness’, may simply become even more committed to cheap imported honeys as their route to profits.
But however Capilano responds, the advent of Bega Cheese as a competitor is a fascinating development in the Australian honey market.
The extra competition should be good news for consumers but the early signs suggest their benefit won’t be mainly through cheaper prices.
The initial range of Bhoneys on offer at Coles are all fully priced compared to Capilano’s offerings. with both the 450gms glass jar and 450gms upside down squeeze packs retailing at $8.50.
That works out at something like $19 per kilo, or about 10% moré expensive than Capilano’s similar offerings.
The premium is even more evident with the two Bhoney varietals – redgum and yellow gum.
They are also priced at $8.50, but supplied in 325 gms glass jars making their effective honey price more than $25 per kilogram.