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"Fast, simple and healthy"

Germany: Convenience - Future lies in the understanding of consumers

A changed eating culture and the increased hecticness of daily life make convenience products ever more popular. In the course of the 5th Deutschen Obst und Gemüse Kongress, Laura Kopka of GfK Panel Service Deutschland and René Nentwich of the Bonduelle Deutschland GmbH speak about the theme "Convenience: Deutschland holt auf" ("Convenience: Germany is catching up").

Moderator Michael Koch of AMI and speaker Laura Kopka

While convenience products are widespread in other European countries, consumption in Germany is still a bit underdeveloped. In her lecture, Laura Kopka mostly spoke of the driving forces behind convenience consumption. The increasing number of 1- and 2 person households, the increasing employment and stresses, a definitive structuring of daily life and a dropping number of purchases per household. According to Kopka, these are all indicators for an increased demand for convenience. "When people cook, they cook simply. Preparing food should be simple and fast," the expert explains. 

Final structure of the meals
Especially the final structure of the meal plays a very large part in this," says Kopka. "Meals become more irregular and are often not consumed at home anymore. Especially breakfast and lunch suffer from this development," the speaker explains. "Man is who he is." This development increases demand for convenience products, according to Kopka.

"We need to understand the shopper"
René Nentwich of Bonduelle Deutschland GmbH has also recognized this trend. His opinion: "We need to understand the shopper. The consumer wants to feel good and he wants it fast, simple and healthy." Nentwich is mostly showing an interest in the perception of the consumer. According to Nentwich, it is important that the industry especially understands the perception of the consumer. "An important aspect here is the differentiation between product groups such as ready-to-eat, mix-ready, ready to warm up and kitchen ready," says the expert. 

Speaker René Nentwich of Bonduelle

According to the experts from Bonduelle, this differentiation is decisive in placing products in the supermarket. "Because of their fresh impression cooled convenience products belong close to the fruit and vegetable department, according to the consumer," says Nentwich. "Fresh cut is seen more as a connective link between raw products, fruit and vegetables."

Keyword: 'parallel usage'
"We need to use our knowledge to create concepts for a usage-oriented common placement," the speaker explains. "An important keyword here is "parallel usage". As one possibility of parallel usage, Nentwich mentions placing pouches of Fresh-Cut lettuce and refined products such as canned corn or feta cheese in the refrigerated section. Furthermore, he recommends block placement of products on the supermarket shelves. That would support the purchase decision of the customer and would lead to an increase of sales.

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