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The Private Brand Movement

A few decades ago, so-called generic products were viewed quizzically and with suspicion. Today, retail chains design and carry their own private brands and consumers hardly think twice about tossing them into shopping carts. Whole Foods has 365. Target has created Archer Farms and its Up And Up store brands. Walmart and Costco even have their own branded gasoline.

Which makes the Private Brand Movement conference in Chicago September 19-21 not just trend-right but trend smart. Attendees will be greeted by various retailers already in the game, as well as the vendors who supply them. Just how far can private brands go, and what purpose can they serve?

One way that Private Brands can help make things better is to create brands whose profits are earmarked to do more than make company owners rich. Rather, those profits can be targeted to enrich society.

Enter The Utopia Project. A curated brand of household products including paper products, cleaning supplies, and everyday food items, the profits from Utopia branded products provide sustainable funding for local and national schools. Started in California (where legislators budget more for prisons than school systems), The Utopia Project has started as a citizen-powered effort that is asking students, parents, and school administrators which products to create and where the money should go.

Still in its fledgling stages, The Utopia Project is gaining both attention and altitude.

For more information, come to the Private Brand Movement conference. Who knows, you may get ideas how to start your own brand.

Use code PBM11THINKTOPIA to get a 20% discount.