Little Shop surprise comeback revealed in leaked email
AN EMAIL being shared on social media appears to reveal a surprising comeback by Coles Little Shop just months after the insanely popular campaign ended.
The note, which has been shared on Little Shop swap groups on Facebook, seems to indicate the collectables craze is set to return for a special "Christmas edition" next week.
"We have some BIG news, team! Little Shop is back for Christmas!" the memo begins.
"From Friday 7 December, for every $30 spent at Coles supermarkets and Coles Online, customers can collect a FREE mini collectable - with a total of 5 minis to collect.
"Little Shop Christmas Edition will delight customers this festive season!"
It is not known which products might be included in any special edition.
In fact, it is not yet known if the memo is genuine. news.com.au has contacted Coles for comment but a response has not yet been received.
However, a Coles spokeswoman did tell Yahoo earlier today: "All I am able to say at this stage is that Santa never gives away his secrets".
Coles released 30 mini toy versions of popular grocery staples including Weet Bix, Vegemite and Nutella during the original Little Shop campaign, which launched in July this year.
Shoppers scored one free toy with every $30 spent in-store, and before long, it had become a popular trend, with some items reportedly being sold online for astronomical prices as parents attempted to amass the entire collection for their kids.
It was so popular Facebook groups dedicated to swapping the toys began popping up on social media and swap days were held in some Coles stores.
Last month, Coles also reported comparable sales growth of 5.1 per cent in the first quarter of the financial year off the back of the highly successful Little Shop campaign.
Headline supermarket sales for the 13 weeks from June 25 to September 23 were up 5.8 per cent to $7.66 billion. Including liquor and convenience, Coles' total sales were up 5 per cent to $9.84 billion.
However, it also sparked some controversy at the time regarding the environmental impact of the toys - especially given Coles and Woolies had banned free single-use plastic bags just before the campaign was launched.
And earlier this month, an Aussie woman claimed to have found a Coles Mini Shop toy washed up on a Bali beach, although it could not be proven whether it had travelled to Indonesia via the ocean or simply lost by a visiting tourist.
The leaked email also comes hot on the heels of rival Woolworths' Christmas Pop-Outs campaign that features 12 buildable cardboard characters.
Customers will receive one for each $30 they spend in-store or online - although so far it has been met with mixed reactions from customers, with some criticising the flimsy toys.
Coles previously indicated the Little Shop campaign would return in 2019.