UPDATE 2-McBride says supermarkets upping own-brand push

Thu Feb 9, 2012 10:28am GMT

* H1 adjusted opg profit 10.3 mln stg vs f'cst 10 mln stg

* Trading since Dec in line with expectations

* Expects progress in year

* Shares up 2.5 pct

By James Davey

LONDON, Feb 9 (Reuters) - Britain's supermarkets are backing own-brand products more than ever before as they seek value for shoppers and differentiation from rivals, according to McBride, Europe's biggest provider of private label household and personal care goods.

Chris Bull, chief executive of the British group, which supplies retailers such as Tesco with goods ranging from dishwasher tablets to deodorant, said supermarkets were responding to changing shopping habits in the economic downturn.

"As people move into private label what we typically see is that once they've tried it they don't move back out of it (in to branded goods) because they see how much value it's delivering," Bull told Reuters on Thursday.

"That's very encouraging for the future."   Continued...

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