Nathan Ansell - Head of Brand and Marketing for M&S Food
-the interview part II: the cheeky bits
On my blog I have several posts about my favourite M&S character “Colin the Caterpiller“, now Percy Pig just got a lot attention for his 21st birthday. Will Collin get some attention soon?
Well, it was a big birthday for Percy, so we gave him a lot of attention. However, since Colin is a good friend of Percy, he was always there to celebrate. At the moment there is no such a special event for Colin planned but I’m sure he will get his chance to shine sometime in the future.
While working for Red Bull, you spend quite some time in Germany, what are your impressions of the German cuisine?
I don‘t know if I have tried the best of Germany as I actually only had cream spinach, potatoes and fish sticks. So, I‘m not sure if I saw the best from the German cuisine. However, I tell you something I like about the German food offering which is the variety of products for lactose and gluten intolerant customers. I think you deal with food allergies much much better. I think there is a much greater awareness.
M&S is currently expanding in France - Are there more branches on the European main land planned?
Our store in Paris is a phenomenal success actually. We are really really pleased with that success: Every day people are queueing for knickers and our croissants. They are doing pretty well. We are definitely looking to make up more stores on the continent. Probably stores that are a bit closer to the UK at the moment. But we are definitely looking as the demand has been fantastic.
In Germany, there is a current debate on whether there should be a veggi day at office cafeterias - what do you think about that?
I definitely think that the idea of having a meat-free Monday is a really good one. We do talk a lot about the consuption of meat. You know a billion of people will go to bed tonight starving while we sometimes go to bed on a big meat meal. So we definitely want to encourage people to maybe have one day per week to have a bit less meat or don‘t eat meat at all. I don‘t think we ever stop selling meat in general of to tell them off but we might encourage them and we always make sure that we have got plenty of vegetarian options.
Can you give us a little sneak preview on the next M&S food events/campaigns?
Coming up in Autumn, we will talk about getting cosy when it‘s getting cold at night. We will also have the 10th anniversary of Gastro Pub this year so we will launch fantastic traditional dishes. We also want to put a focus on the high quality warming types of food. So, it‘s going to be a really awesome period.
Which M&S dish can you recommend me to try next?
Well, the nex thing you should try is the limited edition Gastro Pub range which will come out in a few weeks time.
I have always been hesitating to try the Gastro Pub Scotch Eggs because that is something very … British.
Have you not tried them? Then try that -it‘s amazing!
Find the first part of the interview here.