We’re lining up for soup


Maybe it’s not the 1930s yet. I haven’t seen more people than usual lining up for free soup.

But apparently, a lot more of us are buying soup, the cheaper the better:

According to a November survey of Wal Mart stores focusing on canned foods by
Longbow Research analyst Alton Stump, the canned soup category is gaining
momentum, and within the category, Cambell’s Soup (CPB) is
gaining share against rival Progresso, made by General Mills (GIS)
as consumers look for less expensive meal

According to the survey, volumes in the soup
category expanded at a rate of 10% annually in November
, up from the 7%
to 8% gains registered so far during most of 2008.  “The category volume boost
of late resulted in part from an apparent shift in consumer demand towards
takehome food items, which benefited soup in particular as a less-expensive meal
alternative,”  Mr. Stump said.

That’s from a relief from an outfit known as Longbow Research.

9 thoughts on “We’re lining up for soup

  1. bud

    This is a bit unrelated but relevant to the current economic crisis. I just finished browsing some advanced reviews for the Mustang, Camaro and Challengers the Big 3 are offering. The Mustang is undergoing a moderate face lift. The Camaro is coming out in the spring. And the Challenger was re-introduced earlier this year. All 3 boast their muscle-car heritage with high performance V-8s yet limited room to carry passengers. Ford just introduced a new F-150 pickup. But what are people actually buying? Apparently the Ford Focus is outselling the Mustang by nearly 2 to 1. Is there any attention to this type of car? Apparently not much. Granted gas prices are down, for now, but it seems clear that Detroit has lost it’s ability to produce cars the public will actually buy. So why bail them out? They’ve lost touch with reality. Why not just give the Japanese car makers the money instead to build more factories in the U.S. Seems like that’s the direction we’re headed anyway.

  2. Brad Warthen

    And to cite another sense of the word "relief," that sculpture above is from the FDR memorial in Washington.

    You’ll not that the sculpture has a LOT of copper in it. Given recent prices for that metal, the federal parks people need to put some extra security on that monument…

  3. Brad Warthen

    bud’s comment reminds me of the other column I chose for tomorrow’s op-ed page (in addition to the Broder one). This one is by George Will, and was NOT embargoed (he wrote one out of cycle).

    Will’s advocating that we let GM go into bankruptcy, and he makes a compelling case. An excerpt or two:

    "Nothing," said
    a General Motors spokesman last week, "has changed relative to the GM
    board’s support for the GM management team during this historically
    difficult economic period for the U.S. auto industry." Nothing? Not
    even the evaporation of almost all shareholder value?…

    Some opponents of bankruptcy stress that it might terminate health-care coverage enjoyed by UAW retirees who are too young for Medicare.
    Think about that. If people want to retire before 65, or 35 for that
    matter, that is their business. But there is no public interest in
    protecting the luxury of retirement in the prime of life just because
    in palmy days a private contract between a union and a corporation
    established it as an entitlement for all seasons.

  4. Lee Muller

    George Will is another pundit who knows nothing about running a business, much less automobile manufacturing.
    Bankruptcy will not solve the problems of the automakers.
    $50 BILLION in cash from the taxpayers will not save them, either. That is only 90 days of their combined current negative cash flow.
    The only solution is layoffs with no severance pay from the companies, at least a 35% wage cut, a 50$ benefits cut for retirees, a cash out of current benefits to current employees… all by this Friday.

  5. bud

    Lee might have a point here but he doesn’t go far enough. Top level management must give up all bonuses and most of their salary. No corporate CEO should earn more than $100k/year while asking the government for money.

  6. Lee Muller

    Top management should not earn a bonus when their company is losing money, but you have to pay more than $100,000 a year, or you will not be able to hire people who can turn the problem around.
    If you want to punish someone, go after all the Democrats like Jamie Gorelick, on the boards of FNMA and FMAC, who falsified documents in order to pay themselves bonuses of up to $100,000,000. Prosecute Chris Dodd and Barney Frank for taking kickbacks to help cover up the loans-to-minorities scam.
    This mortgage crisis was caused by Democrat legislation and Democrat fraud.

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