Marlene Gebhard President of Shop ‘n Save on Private Brand

Marlene Gebhard, the president of Shop 'n Save, poses Tuesday, March 13, 2012, at the company's Kirkwood store on Manchester Road. Photo by Johnny Andrews,

This past week the St Louis daily newspaper the St. Louis Post-Dispatch ran a interesting short form interview with the 58 year old president of Supervalu owned Shop ‘n Save Marlene Gebhard. The interview “Five questions with the president of Shop ‘n Save includes everything from the continuing demand for Private Brands to evolving technology to the competitive grocery landscape.

Frequent readers will remember that Supervalu owned, Shop ’n Save has been consolidating its Private Brand portfolio and transitioning many of its private labels to the new consolidated brand Essential Everyday.

Now that the economy has been recovering, have you seen a drop in demand for private-label foods — or is it still going strong?

We see them sticking with the private label and that’s a good thing. Everyone has preferences. But consumers who are very strapped financially are still buying private brands. And also people who are not financially strapped are looking to save a little money so they don’t charge anything and are looking for ways to economize. With gasoline beginning to rise again, we’ll continue to see those private label foods increase. It’s a struggle right now for people who are on fixed incomes and trying to stretch their dollars.

Read the entire article.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.