Forecourt Trader
Easy way to 5 a day

Upsilon has introduced a new product which aims to help busy consumers get their five a day in one go.

in brief

The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) has launched its Community Heroes Award for 2008. Now in its third year, the competition rewards retailers who have made a difference in their community. The top prize includes a place at the Gala dinner and £1,000. For an entry form log onto the ACS website at [].

Results of this month's online poll:

Do you agree with retailers who are calling on the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) to investigate Shell's "unfair" pricing policy which they say is "murdering" the industry?

Forecourts are still 'hot' stuff

Investors have snapped up two Top 50 Indie retailers in recent weeks, with experts saying the forecurt property market is "on fire".

Cost of forecourt crime up to £28.9m

Rising crime cost the forecourt industry £28.9 million in 2006, according to the latest figures from the British Oil Security Syndicate (BOSS). The 2006 Forecourt Crime Statistics report found this was an increase on the previous year's £26.3 million. Meanwhile, £2.2 million of this latest rise in costs related to attacks on Cash in Transit (CIT) and ATM cash

RMIF calls for fuel duty review

The delay or cancellation of future fuel duty rises were at the heart of a 2008 Budget submission by the Retail Motor Industry Federation.

Fragile supply

A recent survey by car supermarket group Motorpoint revealed that car owners have been increasingly leaving their vehicles at home since fuel prices broke through the £1-a-litre barrier at the beginning of November.

Card scam victim warns retailers

The innocent village garage owner whose Jet outlet made national headlines for being at the hub of an international credit card scam has issued a warning to all retailers.

Gardner in Westacre purchase

Top 50 independent group Gardner Garages has bought the BP Westacre Service Station in Wilton Road, Salisbury, Wiltshire from Triple Eight Ltd for £1.825 million.

Commission posse visits Harry Tuffins

Two members of the Conservative Commission into Small Shops on the High Street were in Ludlow last month meeting representatives of local business groups - including Paul Delves, managing director of award-winning forecourt and supermarket operator Harry Tuffins.

Moving forward

Aleef Garages is one of the biggest names in the UK independent forecourt retail sector, and few in the industry could have failed to spot the recent headlines about the

In the surgery this month - Pump Hill Service Station, Clacton on Sea, Essex

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Pump Hill Service Station is on the B1027 which runs between Clacton and Colchester. It is clearly marked by two poles and shares an area with a car sales business.

Credit crunch in the real world

January's always a bit of a grim month and this year's could be grimmer as that 'credit crunch' we've all been hearing about since last summer is about to hit - hard and soon. For most of us (at least those among us who don't have an account with Northern Rock), the constant mentions in the news about the problems of huge multinational banking conglomerates may have seemed totally unconnected with the real world, where trade has largely continued as normal.

Service Centre with Jac Roper

== New Year, new rules ==

Local and proud

Not only were the Frasers named Best Independent with Nine Sites or Less at the Forecourt Trader of the Year Awards back in September, they also picked up the overall category award for Best Neighbourhood site for their Brize Norton Service Station in Oxfordshire.

Only in America

The US town of Gainsville is all but invisible from the Lee Highway, the main artery which takes commuters between their jobs in the business hub of Washington DC and their homes in the rolling countryside of Virginia.

It's a bug's Life

Failing to look after your tanks and pipework properly could really land you in hot water. Not only can a fuel leak seriously damage and pollute the environment, it could end with a hefty fine. But while leaks are something forecourt operators are well aware of, experts are warning retailers to prepare for another problem - jellyfish. No, not the real variety, but something that resembles these sea creatures - and which could end up growing in your fuel tank. And it's all to do with the growing use of biofuels.

Hot property

When an article appeared in The Grocer at the tail end of last year stating that the Co-operative Group had snapped up another seven forecourt sites, Allen Shepherd's phone did not stop ringing. That's because Shepherd is director of corporate retail at Christie & Co, which had handled the sale for QMP, and the calls were from companies wanting to know why they hadn't been alerted to these sites coming on the market. "That just goes to show how in demand forecourts are," says Shepherd. "The market's so hot that we don't need to go onto the open market. We know what buyers are looking for and we tend to pick out three to six parties and sign them up to a confidentiality agreement."

Smoke signals

Another year and yet more legislation for the tobacco industry. In 2007 we had the ban on smoking in public places plus the rise in the age at which people could buy tobacco - from 16 to 18. This year we have new laws for lighters plus the introduction of pictorial health warnings. When will it ever end is the obvious question and the answer is probably when every last smoker has given up. However that's a long way off as there are still 13.7 million adult smokers in the UK - yes the numbers fall every year but not as much as one might think given all the anti-smoking activity.

Key to safer storage

Securikey is expanding its product offering by introducing a range of high security deep key cabinets aimed at forecourt stores.

Coinstar expansion

Somerfield has teamed up with Coinstar E-Payment Services to roll out its Gift Card programme throughout its UK forecourts.

Very good grilling

Lincat has launched a range of contact/panini grills as part of its new generation of Lynx 400 electric, counter-top cooking equipment.

Grab one of these

Musgrave Retail Partners GB have brought out a "Grab and Go" unit to hold spirit bottles, mixers and bagged snacks.

Spice up the year

A new range of KP nuts, the relaunch of the entire McVitie's Digestives range and the extension of the Go Ahead portfolio are the highlights of a busy programme of activity planned by United Biscuits UK for the first two months of 2008.

Super fruit booster

Bakehouse is introducing two products aimed at the healthier snacking market. Booster Bars contain fruit, nuts and seeds and are ideal for eating on the go.

Size matters for Imperial

Imperial Tobacco is expanding its Richmond range with the addition of King Size Menthol 10s.

Healthy investment

Zovirax cold sore cream is back on TV this month with a £850,000 campaign featuring its "helmet" ads which aim to show how cold sores can make sufferers feel self-conscious.

Old-fashioned treats

Speciality toffee maker Walkers Nonsuch is re-launching its traditional slab range with a more 'retro' feel.

Bullish ads for the new year

Red Bull will be back on our screens with its classic ads this month and a proportion of the advertising is due to focus on promoting the Red Bull sugar free can.

A taste of the Med

Ryvita is hoping to attract new year dieters by adding a Mediterranean

Eco-friendly eggs

Cadbury Trebor Bassett's (CTB) Easter line up includes Cadbury Treasure eggs and an Easter egg trail pack as well as an updated luxury range and new spring-themed designs across the shell egg range.

Flap-tastic offer

The Fabulous Bakin' Boys is giving Forecourt Trader readers the chance to win boxes full of its yummy flapjacks.

Back of the net

This month Coca-Cola Enterprises Limited (CCE) is launching its latest on-pack promotion, which will give football fans the chance to win £25,000 for their club to buy a top youth player.

Evian's New Year health drive

Evian's Detox campaign is back for the eighth consecutive year, with a £1.5m marketing campaign. The campaign capitalises on consumers' start-of-year health drive and will reach them through a variety of media including outdoor and press.

Bundles of sales

Gillette is celebrating the success of its first mixed case of products for retailers with a new year giveaway.


Loyalty points, loyalty schemes, loyalty rewards. That word 'loyalty' really is an interesting one. We use it all the time but what does it mean for a retailer? In its true sense 'loyalty' is a devotion and/or commitment to someone or something come what may. Despite everything that may happen and whatever inducements may be offered to the contrary, you continue to keep faith with the object of your loyalty. Doesn't exactly ring true for a retailer, does it?


To claim your Giveaway, simply write your name, address and telephone number on a postcard or sealed envelope stating what you want - The Fabulous Bakin' Boys, Coca Cola, Evian or Gillette - and we'll do the rest, including delivery. Send it to us at Forecourt Trader, William Reed Business Media, Broadfield Park, Crawley, West Sussex RH11 9RT, by January 31.

Fuel prices - January 2, 2008