The second quarter of 2014 has, like the three months before it, seen plenty of product activity in home care as manufacturers seek to continue the momentum in the category. This summary highlights some of the most interesting new product launches and upgrades, with an eye on wider home care trends.
Sniffing out Opportunity in Laundry Care
After an extended period in which format innovation dominated laundry care, fragrance has been steadily returning to the agenda. In the UK, Unilever’s Comfort Exhilarations has been re-launched as Comfort Creations, with three new luxury scent variants - Honeysuckle & Sandalwood, Indian Rose & Musk and Snapdragon & Patchouli – while Unilever’s Surf has unveiled a new exotic scent variant, Surf Wild Flowers & Morning Dew. Likewise in the US, Procter & Gamble has unveiled Bounce Bursts laundry scent booster, added directly to the wash to give a long-lasting scent.
It was inevitable that the focus on format innovation seen in laundry care over the last couple of years could not be sustained indefinitely and that fragrance would eventually return to the fore as a means of differentiation and adding value for leading brands. With no fresh rival to liquid tablet detergents looking likely anytime soon, it is probable that the rest of 2014 will be seen out with fragrance at the fore.