News Update

PLMA names Peggy Davies as Acting President

NEW YORK - June 2020 - The Board of Directors of the Private Label Manufacturers Association is pleased to announce that Peggy Davies has been named Acting President of the Association. Her appointment follows the death of Brian Sharoff, President, who passed away last month after a brief illness. Since 2016, Davies served as PLMA Vice President, Association Relations.

“For four decades, Brian was the face of PLMA,” said Lisa Manzoline, Director of Sales for Reynolds Consumer Products and Chairman of the Board of Directors of PLMA. “It is now our responsibility to focus on the future. As the Board of Directors, we understand this is a difficult and challenging time for many different reasons. We have full confidence that Peggy Davies will be a capable and dynamic leader of PLMA at this crucial juncture – one who is familiar with our member base and the unique challenges we face for the remainder of 2020 and into 2021. Peggy has the experience and qualifications needed, and is 100% ready to carry forward the important work of the association from day one, as the Executive Board conducts a search to determine a permanent successor.”

Commenting on her appointment, Davies said: “I’m honored and deeply grateful to the PLMA Executive Committee and Board of Directors for entrusting me with this tremendous responsibility. As we deal with Brian’s loss, we will best honor his decades-long legacy by carrying on his vision, which we have worked together to build on these last four years. I have been inspired by my close relationship with him for more than 25 years, and with our outstanding and dedicated staff, I am eager to carry forward the exceptional programs we created.”

Davies joined PLMA as Vice President in 2016. Before that she was elected to the Board of Directors in the early 1990s where, over the course of two terms, she either served on or chaired the programming, trade relations, and communications committees. She was elected Board Chairman for two terms from 2003 to 2004 and, among many other accomplishments, dedicated efforts toward expanding PLMA’s commitment to education for industry executives.

In addition to PLMA, she brings three decades of private label industry experience in executive positions. With Daymon Associates from 1985 to 1989, she was involved in building the private label program at Wegmans Supermarkets in Rochester, New York. From there she entered the manufacturing business as vice- president of private label sales for Comstock Michigan Fruit-Agrilink-Birds Eye. Then, from 1999 to 2015, she was food service general manager for the ingredient business at McCain Foods USA, based in Chicago.

In 2012 Davies founded Women Impacting Storebrand Excellence (WISE), a non- profit professional development organization to promote diversity and inclusion in the store brand industry.

Brian Sharoff, President of PLMA, passes away at 77

NEW YORK - 25 May 2020 - Brian Sharoff, President of the Private Label Manufacturers Association, one of the industry’s most successful trade organizations, passed away on Saturday, 23 May, after a brief illness, according to a statement issued by Tim Simmons, PLMA’s Vice President, Communications.

Brian was named President of PLMA in 1981, shortly after the association was founded. During his tenure the association expanded from headquarters in New York to establish international offices in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, and a representative office in Shanghai, China. Membership increased tremendously as well, growing from two hundred companies in the United States to more than 4,500 manufacturers, suppliers, and brokers worldwide.

“Today is a sad day for the entire PLMA family,” said Lisa Manzoline, Director of Sales for Reynolds Consumer Products and Chairman of the Board of Directors of PLMA. “Under Brian Sharoff’s tremendous focus and dedication, the Private Label Manufacturers Association has grown to become a vital and essential resource for suppliers and retailers around the globe. Brian’s leadership will be greatly missed.”

PLMA’s annual “World of Private Label” International Trade Show, held each May at the RAI Exhibition Centre in Amsterdam has grown to more than 4,500 stands and now represents manufacturers from nearly 75 countries. The show attracts own brands buyers from across Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. The trade show held every November at the Rosemont Convention Center in Chicago draws the largest concentration of private label buyers anywhere in the U.S., and is where key executives from supermarkets, hypermarkets, drug chains, and other retailers come to find suppliers and new products.

In addition to the trade exhibitions, PLMA presents conferences and educational programs throughout the year, in addition to publishing exclusive research and studies. The association in recent years has also produced a wide range of original video programming, providing news and information for both the industry and consumers.

Brian Sharoff is survived by his wife Judith, daughter Alexandra, son Peter, five grandchildren, and sister Shirley Sharoff.

PLMA’s 2020 “World of Private Label” postponed to 2-3 December

AMSTERDAM - March 2020 - In light of government announcements prohibiting large events such as trade shows during the Coronavirus crisis, PLMA’s 2020 “World of Private Label”, which was originally scheduled for 26-27 May this year, has been postponed to 2-3 December (Wednesday-Thursday) at the RAI Exhibition Centre in Amsterdam.

Brian Sharoff, President of PLMA says: “With all government restrictions, lockdowns, uncertainties and personal concerns, postponing was unavoidable. The PLMA team and all partners involved will work hard and with maximum enthusiasm and focus towards the new dates in December. I am totally confident that it will be a great show!”

PLMA's 2020 “World of Private Label”, 26-27 May, to bring over 17,000 visitors to Amsterdam, The Netherlands

AMSTERDAM - February 2020 - The world’s biggest private label trade show is getting even bigger, featuring more exhibitors, more products, and more retailers. It’s PLMA’s 2020 “World of Private Label” International Trade Show, to be held 26-27 May at the RAI Exhibition Centre in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

The event comes at a time when consumer attitudes are changing rapidly about food, health and beauty and household products. Shoppers are increasingly looking for products that are fresh, promote health and wellness and are sustainable. All of these trends will be reflected on the trade show floor.

This year’s “World of Private Label” is expected to attract more than 17,000 visitors from 120 countries. Visitors include retailers representing supermarkets, hypermarkets, discounters, drugstores and department stores, as well as importers and exporters, manufacturers, consultants, sales agents and packaging and design experts.

On the trade show floor they have the opportunity to visit more than 2,800 exhibiting companies. The exhibitors are manufacturers and suppliers of fast-moving consumer goods, including food, household and health and beauty products from more than 70 countries.

Featured at the trade show will be more than 60 national and regional pavilions. Some national pavilions, like those from Germany, Italy, France and Spain, have participated in the show for many years. There are also several new pavilions, including ones from Brazil, Belgium, Indonesia, Romania, Belarus and Bulgaria.

Brian Sharoff, President of PLMA, says “The growth of the trade show reflects the growing popularity of retailer brands across Europe. Today’s shoppers recognize the quality, innovation and value retailers offer with their private label products.”

The “World of Private Label” extends beyond the exhibition stands. A special attraction is PLMA’s Idea Supermarket. It displays recently introduced private label ranges from more than 60 retailers in Europe, United States, Latin America, Africa and Asia. The products showcase the latest consumer trends, such as vegan and vegetarian foods, environmentally friendly products and premium health and beauty items.

Also on display will be hundreds of new and innovative food and non-food private label products, including all the winners of PLMA’s 2020 International “Salute to Excellence” Awards. The Awards give recognition to outstanding food and non-food private label products that have been introduced by supermarkets, hypermarkets, discounters, drugstores, and specialty stores in the past year. One day prior to the trade show floor opening, Monday, 25 May, visitors can learn more about private label and retailing during Executive Education Classes and at a special seminar featuring presentations by industry experts.

The Executive Education Classes will be held from 08:30 – 14:00 and feature presentations on private label strategy, consumer trends, product development and innovation, best practices in advertising and promotion, manufacturer-retailer relations and e-commerce. Classes have been selected for importance to retailers and exhibitors who will be meeting during the trade show.

  • At the seminar programme, Ali Dibadj, an award-winning financial analyst with Alliance Bernstein, will explain how private label and smaller brands are gaining market share from the A-brands.
  • Benjamin Punchard. Global Packaging Insights Director at Mintel, will identify the four key packaging issues facing private label in the years ahead.
  • Tom Penninckx, Client Business Partner at The Nielsen Company will report on the latest market share statistics for private label across Europe.

The seminar programme will be held from 14:00-16:00 on 25 May at the RAI Forum Centre. The session draws an audience of around 400 people. Admission to the seminar is complimentary to all registered visitors and exhibitors. Presentations are translated into English, French, German, Italian and Spanish.

For more information about PLMA’s 2020 “World of Private Label” International Trade Show, or to arrange an interview with Brian Sharoff, President of PLMA, contact Leonique White, International Trade Relations, PLMA International Council at +31 20 5753032 or email:

PLMA’s 2020 Roundtable Conference puts the spotlight on the private label partnership, 26-27 February in Milan, Italy

AMSTERDAM - February 2020 - “The Future of the Private Label Partnership” is the theme of PLMA’s 2020 Roundtable Conference. Presentations will focus on the best ways retailers and manufacturers can improve the way they work together.

The programme examines supply management issues and best practices in sourcing, product development and private label marketing. This year’s Roundtable will be held 26-27 February in Milan.

The Roundtable Conference begins on Wednesday afternoon, 26 February. Maria Bogdanova, senior research analyst, Euromonitor, will provide an overview of the Italian retail landscape. This will be followed by a store tour with visits to major retailers in Milan.

On Thursday 27 February, the programme will begin with a session organised by the highly-regarded Institute for Grocery Distribution (IGD). It features three presentations on the most significant issues concerning the private label partnership.

  • In-store technology and its impact on private label will be discussed by Jiong-Joing Yu, IGD senior retail analyst, Asia Innovation & Futures.
  • Supply chain management will be examined in a presentation by Christopher Irish, IGD head of insight-supply chain.
  • Jon Wright, IGD head of retail insight, will identify best practices in sourcing, product development and marketing.

The afternoon session begins with a presentation on the impact of consumers on the private label partnership. Richard Cope, senior trends consultant at Mintel, will focus on the impact of the emergence of Generation Z.

Concluding the programme will be an industry panel of manufacturers and retailers who will add real-world experiences to the problems and proposed solutions. The panel will be moderated by Edgar Elzerman of ECI.

Host hotel for PLMA’s 2020 Roundtable Conference is the Hilton Milan. For more information, please click here.

European supermarkets are taking private label wine to the next level

AMSTERDAM - September 2019 - PLMA has announced the winners of this year’s International Salute to Excellence Wine Awards and it is clear that European supermarkets are taking private label wine to the next level.

European retailers won 42 of the 50 awards, given for best quality or best value in 25 categories judged by varietal, style, and appellation. That included Metro's Grauburgunder for Pinot Grigio, Coop Italia's Fior Fiore Chianti Classico DOCG Rocca delle Macìe 2016 for Chianti; Despar's Nebbiolo Langhe DOC Vignaia Bauducco 2015 for Italy Red; HEMA‘s Red Spain for Iberico Red; Carrefour’s La Cave d’Augustin Florent Beaumes de Venise 2017 for France Red; and UK's Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Champagne Brut Blanc de Noirs for Champagne.

Discounters Aldi and Lidl won together 11 awards, continuing a trend from the past several International Salute to Excellence competitions that saw them outpace the field. Retailers in the Netherlands and Germany won 12 awards each, including the Netherlands' Albert Heijn with five medals.

In competing for honours, supermarkets in Europe emphasized importance in less common grape varieties. "Yes, in Europe there is certainly a long term trend towards 'unknown grape varietals,' and the trend is here to stay," says Jacqueline Snoeker, who owns Vinergy, a Dutch wine consultancy. "People are bored with straight varietals like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay and even sometimes Sauvignon Blanc. So this trend will not disappear after a year or so. Europeans are also more interested in wines from small appellations, there is a trend towards discovering again their own European continent."

Point in fact: Portuguese retailer Sonae MC won best value Iberico White for its Contemporal Loureiro DOC Vinho Verde 2018 and the best quality France White was a Roussanne from the Dutch HEMA chain, the Domaine Sainte Rose Barrel Selection Roussanne Pays d'Oc 2014.

"It doesn’t mean less known grapes always make better wines, but maybe they stand out because they are individual," says British-born winemaker Jo Ahearne, MW. "But there is a big trend for people looking for unusual places and grapes, and that may be what's happening here."

Complete results are at The international Salute to Excellence Wine Awards are a competition sponsored by the Private Label Manufacturers Association with offices in New York and Amsterdam. The panels specializing in wines were composed of eighteen men and women, including Masters of Wine, sommeliers, winemakers, wine writers, educators and retailers. More than 350 wines from 40 retailers in 11 countries were considered and evaluated.

PLMA’s 2019 “World of Private Label” International Trade Show took place at RAI Exhibition Centre in Amsterdam

AMSTERDAM - June 2019 - The world’s largest private label exhibition took place on 21 and 22 May at the RAI Exhibition Centre in Amsterdam. This year’s “World of Private Label” International Trade Show was bigger than ever, with more than 16,000 buyers and visitors from 120 countries attending the two-day event.

On Monday 20 May, a pre-show seminar programme opened with the announcement of the winners of PLMA’s 2019 International “Salute to Excellence” Awards, which recognise innovation in private label. More than 500 food and non-food products from 88 retailers in 23 countries were considered for Awards. In addition, nearly 350 wines were judged for best quality and best value.

Also at the seminar, Lidia Palubina of Kantar Consulting gave a presentation on the global impact Alibaba’s retail concept may have, while Ben Miller of IGD focused on the future of traditional retailers.

On the Trade Show floor there were 2700 exhibiting companies from over 70 countries including 60 national and regional pavilions. The exhibition area covered nearly 42,000m2 and 15 exhibit halls in RAI Centre.

Products on display on the show floor included fresh, frozen and refrigerated foods, dry grocery, and beverages as well as non-food categories, including cosmetics, health and beauty, household and kitchen, auto aftercare, garden, and housewares and DIY.

A special attraction was PLMA’s Idea Supermarket, where attendees could see displays of the private label products selected as winners of the “Salute to Excellence” Awards. The Idea Supermarket also displayed private label products that exemplified important consumer trends from retailers in Europe, United Sates, Latin America, Africa and Asia.

More products were to be seen at The New Product Expo, displaying more than 600 new private label products and packaging selected for their innovation and originality.

The theme for this year’s “World of Private Label” International Trade Show was “Listen to the Buzz”. It highlighted the thousands of conversations that took place on the trade show floor between retailers and exhibitors at the world’s largest private label exhibition.

For more information about PLMA’s 2019 “World of Private Label” International Trade Show”, or to arrange an interview with Brian Sharoff, President of PLMA, contact Leonique White, Manager Trade Show Development, PLMA International Council, at telephone: +31 20 5753032 or email:

PLMA announces retail winners of 2019 “Salute to Excellence” Awards for innovation in private label

AMSTERDAM - June 2019 - The Private Label Manufacturers Association has announced the winning retailers of PLMA’s 2019 International “Salute to Excellence” Awards honouring innovation in food and non-food private label products.

The Awards were given to 36 retailers from 13 countries. Retailers in Germany came away with 17 International “Salute to Excellence” Awards, followed by 12 Awards each for retailers in the Netherlands and Ireland and six Awards each for retailers in Spain and France and four Awards for retailers in the United Kingdom and Denmark.

Five Awards, the most for any retailer, were given to Ireland’s Musgrave Retail Partners. Another Irish grocer, Dunnes Stores, came away with four Awards, as did Aldi, Lidl and SPAR. Aldi was recognised for products sold in its United Kingdom and Irish stores, Lidl for products sold in the Netherlands and Germany, and SPAR for its private label in the Netherlands.

“My congratulations go to the winning retailers,” said PLMA president Brian Sharoff, “as well as to all of the other companies which participated in the event. For many years, we have heard the complaint that private label is merely a copycat of A-brands. These awards demonstrate clearly that private label is now leading the retail industry and giving shoppers the great products they want.”

All the Award-winning food and non-food products were selected by panels of judges, consisting of industry experts, including chefs, former retailers, academics, nutritionists, journalists, and packaging specialists.

In food, winning products included Aldi Ireland’s Specially Selected Thai-inspired vegetable burgers, REWE’s bio hummus tahini and SPAR’s gluten-free snacks. In non-food there were Awards for ICA’s eco laundry detergent, dm-drogerie markt’s 183 Days by Trend it Up tutti frutti lip gloss and El Corte Ingles’ Fred & Rita Cooling Dog Bed.

More than 500 products introduced in the past year by 88 retailers in 23 countries were considered for Awards. The products showed the creativity and innovation of retailers. For example, Migros in Switzerland introduced Mi Bugs, containing mealworms, locust and crickets; Aldi UK created an organic edamame pasta, and Delhaize Belgium made a wild boar stew.

In addition to food and non-food, the Salute to Excellence Awards featured private label wines. Nearly 350 wines in 25 categories were judged and 26 retailers from 10 countries were honoured for best quality or best value.

PLMA’s International “Salute to Excellence” Awards were established in 2014. To see all the “Salute to Excellence” winners, go to