Hang on, we still have to get through the 2010 World football marketing opportunity, then there's the 'Better buy something for your dad' marketing opportunity. We have a bit of a break then before the imported from America, October 31st Marketing opportunity. This is followed by the Guy Fawlkes marketing opportunity (which looks just like the one a week before) Then finally we can concentrate on the mid winter (best not mention Jesus or people might get the idea that the whole thing shouldn't be about spending money) marketing opportunity.
I used to work in a huge cake factory which had a big Christmas volume, to the extent that it was chaos from October on. The Christmas planning started on Jan 2nd with a post mortem of the last month's sales, and we worked backwards from there. Christmas production started in February, and the first milestone was about April - basically if all the chocolate Yule logs weren't done, packed and in the freezer by then, we were screwed.