Sinegal was inspired by a 1991 article in Forbes about rising profit margins for leading consumer goods’ companies at the time like General Foods, H.J. Heinz and Nabisco and the emerging growth of private-label brands. Consumers are “starting to switch to house brands…The trend so far is only a trickle but it shows signs of growing fairly rapidly,” the article said. Sinegal underlined key passages from the article and sent it around to Costco’s top merchants.

Costco at the time was also expanding internationally, including in the United Kingdom and Canada, where stores’ private-label brands were better quality and more popular with shoppers than in the United States. Most US chains’ private brands had been boring, knockoff brands with white labels.

By creating a single overarching brand for all its private label products, the warehouse chain helped shoppers make decisions. The Kirkland brand meant a product would be high quality, regardless of what people were buying. There’s a reason loyal Costco customers will tell you to buy the store-brand products first.

Kirkland Signature, Costco’s store brand, is challenging manufacturers hoping to earn or retain a coveted spot at the warehouse retailer. Since 1995, Costco has used its Kirkland products to attract shoppers, building a reputation for quality and low prices on milk, toilet paper, men’s shirts and golf balls bearing the unassuming red logo. About a quarter of Costco’s $118.7 billion in annual sales come from Kirkland Signature products, and the percentage is growing, company executives say.

According to; Source of photos: internet