It’s no wonder Campbell Soup Co has re-launched Tim Tams in the US.

They have returned to US outlets, especially the Target chain, via Campbell’s subsidiary, Pepperidge Farm, just in time for the peak time for chocolate, winter.

It was the success of an exclusive deal a year ago through Target stores in the US, plus helping Arnott’s in Australia to maintain solid earnings, that convinced Campbell to make it an annual event.

In fact Campbell says that the line of biscuits will now be sold in the US from October through to March each year. That’s because they are a chocolate-based snack, whose peak selling season in America is from mid-autumn through to early spring.

They started selling a couple of weeks before Campbell released its first-quarter profit figures overnight showing an upturn in earnings, thanks in part to the improvement at Arnotts and Tim Tams in Australia.

“In Australia, sales increased due to the favorable impact of currency and significant growth in Arnott’s, led by higher sales of Tim Tam biscuits.”

Campbell said operating earnings in its bakery and snacking products division in the quarter ending November 1 “were $100 million compared with $83 million in the previous-year period.

“The increase in operating earnings was fueled by margin-driven growth in both Arnott’s and Pepperidge Farm and the favorable impact of currency.”

That’s the sharp rise in the value of the Australian dollar in the November 1 quarter that meant more revenue and earnings when translated into lower valued US dollars.

The improvement helped Campbell Soup to a higher-than-expected profit for the quarter and the $US17 million increase matched the rise in the earnings contribution from the company’s dominant soup division.

Prices increases, lower costs for commodities such as grains (wheat and flour) and tomatoes and cost cuts were also factors.

Campbell earned $US304 million, up from $US260 million,.

Sales fell 2.1% to $US2.2 billion. Soup sales in the US fell 3%, but Tim Tams helped save the day!

Campbell said it in commentary that it benefited from consumers eating more at home, pointing to the relative low price of a bowl of soup, compared with the cost of other foods.

But we in Australia know Tim Tams are the only low cost way of rewarding ourselves after thinking about our diet.

According to Campbell, Australians consume more than  400 million Tim Tams each year — that’s 35 million packs.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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