Danone Romania, the leader of the local yoghurt market, announced on Thursday at a press conference the launch of a new yoghurt pot on which the Danone label stands out in order to make it easier for consumers to spot the company’s products on the shelf. The packaging change will be reflected in 50 per cent of the portfolio and 25 per cent of the market starting in May when the new yoghurt pot, dubbed KISS, can be bought. This will be the first time this technology is used in our country.
“The new technology and the new yoghurt pot are Danone patents and Romania is the first country in Eastern Europe in which the company implements this innovation. The KISS pot, whose name is derived from “Keep It Simple & Safe,” was created by the Danone Group out of the desire to launch a unique ergonomic format, easier for the consumer to use. At the same time, the new pot has a more attractive design that is easy to identify on the shelf, bringing added simplicity, elegance and uniqueness on the crowded yoghurt market,” said Dieter Schulz (photo) , Danone General Manager for South East Europe. Likewise, he revealed that apart from the packaging, the taste and the recipes will also be improved. In what concerns the price, Schulz was unable to say to what extent it will be modified, however he expressed optimism thanks to the lowering of the VAT on foodstuffs from 24 to 9 per cent starting on June 1.
An investment of RON 10 M
The packaging change entails an investment of RON 10 M and is based on modernization and the implementation of a unique technology within the Danone plant in Bucharest. The Danone portfolio re-launch project was complex, its implementation taking 8 months and involving a 50-man team from the production and technical areas.
“16 years ago when we started producing yoghurts in Romania we set new standards on the market and we managed to attract new consumers to the yoghurt category. Now we are taking these standards further, thus answering our consumers’ expectations to permanently innovate as leader of the yoghurt market. We have invested over RON 340 M in our local operations and this new investment proves our confidence in the Romanian market’s development potential, but also our dedication to continuing to create value in Romania through constant investments in our plant, in the Danone yoghurts as well as in social causes,” Schulz added.
In what concerns future projects, the company is trying to “educate” consumers in Romania to consume yoghurt, considering the fact that a Romanian consumers on average 6-7 kilograms of yoghurt per year, half the consumption level registered in countries such as Poland and Hungary, and far below the average consumption level in developed states such as France and Germany where the annual consumption per capita stands at approximately 25 kilograms.
The Danone plant in Bucharest processes approximately 50 million liters of milk each year, a significant part of this quantity coming from Romanian farms. In this sense, the company has supported the development of Romanian farms through programs for both large farms (starting in 2006) as well as small farms (starting in 2012) that have totaled over RON 30 M in the last 10 years.
Danone is market leader on the yoghurt segment, having a market share of over 50 per cent. According to the QUDAL – Quality Medal report authored by Switzerland’s ICERTIAS company in 2015, Danone topped the Romanian consumers’ quality yoghurt rankings. Likewise, Danone was voted as the yoghurt that offers the best quality/price ratio (according to ICERTIAS Best Buy Award report on Romania). Danone is a member of the Danone Group that is present in 140 countries.