CHOICE membership

Coles Little Shop


I would be interested to know something ‘behind the scenes’ about this particular promotion. While a few of the 30 items on offer are Coles-branded, most are miniatures of big-name brand products.

So… who actually paid for their manufacture? Did Coles approach the companies with the promotional idea, and say “it’ll cost $x to make all of the Milo miniatures. Packaging and distribution will cost $y. Your total bill will be $z for this promotion”?

I know our major supermarkets now make suppliers do a lot of the shelf-stacking, and twist arms to get lower prices; I cannot help but suspect that Coles outsourced most of the costs associated with this promotion while gaining most of the benefits.


I would be amazed if Coles actually paid any of the costs associated with this absolutely brilliant promotion, and would expect that the participating brands would have contributed handsomely towards it.

But look at the bottom line for them by participating. Millions of toys with their name and livery in the face of children and parents for years to come and the exclusivity of being the only brand in any category.

There were even schoolteachers collecting them for use as an in class educational tools.

I expect that when Coles approached each supplier, their first question would have been “Where do we sign?”


Hopefully as an example of bad outcomes for the environment! Fad this week/month, landfill the next.


Thanks for noting that Fred.

It might be a concern that using little shop items in class rooms encourages young school students to show an interest in collecting such toys. As children we can be so competitive.

The most obvious way to add to your standing with the other kids in class is to have the biggest and best collection, acquired by shopping where?

I hope this has not been an outcome of Coles promotional program.


I am very concerned by the collecting frenzy, which those tokens have created. By looking at those worthless items as collectibles, people have attributed a value to them, which they clearly do no have. The best I have seen is an ad on gumtree, trying to sell individual tokens for $ 100 each. But also parents have created special forums, swap meetings and are driving from suburb to suburb to buy/swap them. Truth is, that within a few months, most of them will be thrown into the rubbish bin, but they will never have any value. Very clever marketing by Coles, but is it responsible and environmentally sound?


Our local school’s prep class as a mock in class shop so the children understand purchasing items and also mathematics/addition and the monetary system. They use real sized recycled items from homes such as washed and cleaned bottles, cardboard food packaging etc.

These have already been produced and have been diverted temporarily from the waste/recycling stream…and are also the same size a child would see in a supermarket/retail outlet (and in their parents trolley).

Selection of these items have not been biased by marketing teams developing pester power plastic trinkets, but from the shopping trolley of an average ‘Joe/Jill’.

If our local school started to use the trinkets for the same purpose, I would be having words (possibly along with other parents) about this.


Ever seen Blue Poles, by Jackson Pollock? It is an indescribable mess that is also worth a fortune! At the time the National Gallery of Australia bought the mess, it was too expensive for the director to approve and so the acquisition was approved by Gough Whitlam.

Does Blue Poles have an intrinsic value of between $100m and $300m? When my sister and I first saw it (as young children), we totally embarrassed our parents with our critical commentary: “That’s awful!” (in childese, I gather it came out as “Er, yuck!”).


A bit more behind the Little Shop story.


Seriously, are you comparing " Coles little shop" items with art? The price of art is never defined by the material value of it’s components. Otherwise the Mona Lisa would be only worth a few bucks. The little shop items are mass produced in the millions and will go to the landfill over the next few years.


I have two responses:

  1. How do you define ‘art’?
  2. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
  3. Who specifies the value of an item?

You may not like these little replicas, and you may think they have no value - in the same way that I find the idea that Blue Poles has such enormous value ridiculous. There are people to prove both of us wrong.


I don’t shop at Coles - I feel like I am missing out, luckily … :slight_smile:


We’ve decided not to shop there anymore either, solely due to their lack of concern for the environment after the latest plastic bag and plastic toy affairs.


Great example, it speaks to the underlying value of any particular item. While obviously we can’t compare collectibles to art, certainly some collectibles have become sought after and fetch high prices. Check out no.#6 on list - a Hot Wheels Kombi van worth $70K to some buyers.


Fortunately for me even my grandchildren are past the age of collecting these little products.
Really, each one has a $30 cost! One for each $30 spent in the shop.

When my children were small, tacky plastic toys came inside a box of cereal as a special promotion. The cereal was the normal price, couple of dollars at the most, and we only ever bought the cereal they ate anyway.


Here I was thinking that the additional marketing (waste?) materials made for children were unique to Australia. Well, it appears that the idea didn’t originate here as when recently in Romania, the Klaufand supermarkets also provide additional children targeted marketing materials to customers. Each cardboard insert comes flatpacked in a sealed foil plastic envelope.

Imagine the amount of materials if every supermarket in the world had similar practices.

split this topic #36

A post was split to a new topic: Woolworths pop-outs


Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the supermarket.



I wonder if we’ll see a similar furore this time around…


An article regarding McDonalds Happy Meal toys selling for up to $900 each, depending on rarity.

Better hang onto your Coles Little Shop toys for a few more decades.



And now Woollies has jumped on the bandwagon again.