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The Partnership no. 12

  • Text
  • Enza
  • Partnership
  • Zaden
  • Vegetables
  • Cauliflower
  • Products
  • Varieties
  • Japan
  • Seeds
  • Breeding

Old school still leading

Old school still leading Despite this trend in food service – and also in food boxes – the virtual supermarkets are still the leaders worldwide when it comes to online purchases of fresh vegetables. England is leading the way. Consumers like to have their online purchases from retailers delivered to their home, particularly in large cities such as London. “Here, almost 10% of the total spending on fresh vegetables is achieved online. An explanation for this is that the quality of fresh vegetables in the physical stores in England is high and consistent. As a result, the consumer is not afraid to purchase these products online. This is not the case yet in, for example, the Netherlands and France, where as a consequence this percentage is a lot lower therefore. Incidentally, France has been the pickup champion for many years, with more than 4,000 collection stations at supermarkets and hypermarkets. In other words, the traditional retailers also dominate the online trade in France, but the consistency in shelf-life, taste and uniformity still requires a bit of extra attention.” New entrants and brands In addition to the well-known retailers, some new players from outside the supermarket world are slowly emerging in the Western food-for-home chain. One interesting initiative in the Netherlands is Picnic, which is strongly reminiscent of the milkman who used to make his daily rounds at set times in the UK and the Netherlands. The difference is that consumers have to register for this service and the electric tricycle minivan only starts driving around the neighbourhood once sufficient numbers have registered. An app displays the van's route and what time they will be delivering. “Several cities have already embraced the concept, due in part to the fact that Picnic offers products at competitive prices. In other EU countries and the USA there are also manufacturers and new players who want to break down the established logistical structures and deliver their products directly to the consumer.” Verwegen is referring to examples such as Amazon Fresh. After starting in London, this supplier has been active in Berlin since this spring and the first German price comparisons show that Amazon is certainly no more expensive than the conventional supermarkets when it comes to vegetables. In some neighbourhoods, the fast delivery – sometimes within an hour – is a trigger. And because the chains are short and the cold chain is closed, these new players are always able to offer very good quality control and shelf-life. The European retail trade press has been closely monitoring the introduction of Amazon Fresh and the recent acquisition of American high-end grocery chain Whole Foods by Amazon has caused quite a stir. “The USA is not yet a major player in the world of online grocery retailers, but this acquisition could result in major changes over the coming years, if only based on the extra data and knowledge that Amazon now has access to.” China is the frontrunner In countries where the switch to closed cold chains has yet to be made, the online ordering and direct delivery of fresh products to the customer's home can result in major savings for the trader. Supermarkets never really took off in these countries. The introduction of online purchasing would effectively skip the phase of the physical supermarket. The percentage of consumers who buy their groceries online in this way could grow exponentially. China is the best example of this and not only when it comes to fresh vegetables. One study has shown that the Chinese online purchases will more than quadruple in the five years to 2020, compared to less than double in the EU. “This growth can be explained in part by a significant increase in purchasing power in the Chinese urban areas and the explosive growth in transactions via mobile telephones. Social Media apps, such as the Chinese platform Wechat, stimulate this online demand.” “Within the fresh products, it was primarily the imported fruit that was initially successful online, such as cherries. These were promoted via Wechat and offered to the consumer directly, bypassing the traditional trading channels. Vegetables are a bit less sexy, but we definitely expect product introductions in the future that will take place mainly via Chinese online channels. This will offer opportunities in the future for tasty snack tomatoes and perhaps also mini-conical sweet peppers, both grown in modern glasshouses. If China displays an interest in these healthy snackvegetables, it remains to be seen whether the supply from Grocery Sales online in 2015 and 2020 200 150 100 50 0 China UK Japan France USA 2015 2020 March 2017, before takeover Whole Foods by Amazon Chinese glasshouses can keep up with demand. Considering the capital-intensive growth, this will require new business models.” It is no coincidence that the Chinese e-commerce giant Jingdong Group, JD.com, announced a partnership with the Japanese Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings in June of this year. Together, they will invest in high-tech glasshouses to be able to meet the growing demand for fresh products in the future. The Regional Sales Director at Enza Zaden Export is also keeping a close eye on the developments in China. Go online Tribelli® and Food in the box As a seed company, Enza Zaden is not only focusing on developing new varieties, but also looking for opportunities to connect with all parties in the chain, including the consumer. This has led to an alliance in Spain between Food in the box and Tribelli®, the Enza Zaden brand for sweet conical peppers. “Food in the box, with its cooking at home recipe model ‘Cook, Enjoy and Share’ gives us the opportunity to enjoy and experiment with a wide range of products delivered within 24 hours. And now, thanks to this collaboration, the Spanish consumer has access to a greater number of recipes that include these delicious and healthy Tribelli®,” says Maria del Mar Peralta, Marketing Manager South Europe. From Food in Online shortens the chains, stimulates food service and offers many new opportunities. Particularly in rapidly developing economies. The aim of online providers is to offer the consumer a unique and satisfying experience. But the consumer is critical. The consumer is looking for convenience, will not adapt to suit the supplier, but instead expects the supplier to respond to the daily – smartphone – routine. The online provider who is most successful in doing this will win the hearts of the consumers. The Box, David Nath (CMO) explains: “In the future, people will configure a conscious, nutritional, social framework and the whole food industry will have to adapt to fulfill those requirements”. The partnership between Tribelli® and Food in the Box has created a dedicated recipes collection online, is actively present on social media, and more importantly gives the consumers the opportunity to enjoy the Tribelli® experience. www.foodinthebox.com www.tribelli.com @tribellisweet 18 | The Partnership The Partnership | 19

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