The Weekly Consensus™ brings to your inbox every Monday a summary of the major stories that impacted consumer businesses in the prior week. It also includes “The Big Story” – and editorial by a Consensus professional commenting on an item of significance to the industry.


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What do Allbirds, Warby Parker, Chewy.com, and Peloton all have in common? First off, they are all digitally native direct to consumer (DTC) brands. Secondly, they all grew rapidly during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021. DTC e-commerce has become increasingly popular over the past two decades, but the pandemic led to strongly accelerated […]

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On July 12th of this year, Flower Foods, a bakery company famous for the snack cake brands Tastykake and Mrs. Freshley’s, made an investment in Base Culture, a better-for-you baked goods brand with recent meteoric growth. Base Culture has gained traction producing gluten- and grain-free breads. Why might a sweets-and-treats company like Flower Foods decide […]

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In March of last year, my colleague Marshall Schleifman wrote in this space about the meteoric rising cost of shipping ocean freight – one of the many negative outcomes of disruptions and imbalances in the global supply chain. As tracked by the Global Freightos Baltic Index (below), China/East Asia to North America West Coast container […]

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Since the 1980s, retailers have been investing in private brands – brands owned by and thus sold exclusively at a particular retailer. Once considered second-tier products offering cheaper versions of basic merchandise, today’s private brands sit side-by-side with national brands and are merchandized so customers may not realize they are store brands. In some cases, […]

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A recent exposé on fast-fashion retailer H&M alleges that the company’s environmental promise is undermined by greenwashing. H&M was using a scorecard system to inform customers about the environmental soundness of each product, but a report by Quartz claims that more than half of the scorecards portrayed products as being better for the environment than […]

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