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03-07-2017

Germany: Sweet Biscuits, Snack Bars and Fruit Snacks

  1. Retail value sales in sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks increase by 2% to €1.7 billion in 2016, while volume sales increase by 2% to 312,000 tonnes
  2. Growth in all three of the categories of sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks are supported by the strong snacking trend
  3. Fruit snacks generates the strongest value and volume growth in 2016, with growth spurred by the strong increase in demand for processed fruit snacks
  4. 2016 sees the average unit price of sweet biscuits, snack bars in fruit snacks increases by 1% in current terms for the fourth consecutive year
  5. Aldi remains the leader in sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks in 2016 with a value share of 16%, while Bahlsen and Griesson de Beukelaer are the leading branded players with 13% and 9% respectively
  6. Sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks is expected to increase in value at a CAGR of 1% over the forecast period, remaining on €1.7 billion until 2021
TRENDS

2016 was another very successful year for sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks in Germany. Overall retail value, retail volume and foodservice volume sales all saw positive development, which was, without exception, supported by increasing demand in each of sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks. The most important driver of this successful development was the strong snacking trend in Germany, whereby consumers with increasingly hectic lifestyles are looking for flexible consumption opportunities outside of the main meals of the day. The quite favourable economic circumstances in the country and high levels of consumer confidence also worked in favour of the category and its often comparatively expensive products towards the end of the review period.
The 2% current value growth recorded in sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks in 2016 was in line with the 2% current value CAGR recorded in the category over the review period. Overall, the review period saw rather wide variation in terms of annual sales performances, ranging from the 3% current value decline recorded in 2014 to the 5% current value growth registered in 2015. In fact, the 2% current value growth recorded in the category during 2016 was the second best performance of the review period, although this was only slightly better than the performances seen during the early years of the review period such as 2012 and 2013. Given the strong growth recorded in the category in 2015, which means that all further success is measured against a much higher base, the fact that the development of the category was still slightly above the review period average in 2016 clearly shows that the category remains a successful one.
The strongest growth in current value terms in sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks in 2016 was achieved by fruit snacks with a 4% increase and, in particular, the category of processed fruit snacks, which increased in current value by 6%. In addition to taking advantage of the abovementioned growth opportunities, each of these categories has been able to benefit massively from the health and wellness trend and the fact that many German consumers are now looking for healthier options when snacking. It has to be noted, however, that compared with snack bars and, in particular, sweet biscuits, fruit snacks only accounted for a very low proportion of actual value and volume sales in the category in Germany at the end of the review period. Within the much larger category of sweet biscuits, cookies remains the most successful category, not only towards the end of the review period but also over the entire review period, with this positive performance supported by the larger numbers of products on offer in the category and rising consumer demand. This higher demand was fuelled mainly by the wider availability of a larger number of products and their more noticeable presentation on retail shelves, including, for example, through additional promotional displays.
The average unit price of sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks increase by 1% in current terms in 2016, a consistent performance given that this was the same rate of growth that was recorded in this measure from 2013 until the end of the review period. While the average unit price increased from €5.00 per kg in 2011 to €5.40 per kg in 2015, which was mainly due to the 3% increase recorded in the average unit price in the category in current terms in 2012, little growth was recorded in the average unit price in actual terms in 2016 as the average unit price of sweet biscuits, snack bars in fruit snacks remained on €5.40 over the course of the year. For the first time in many years, the pressure coming from rising commodity and energy prices weakened so much that manufacturers of branded products and private label alike were able to hold their prices almost stable.
The largest and most relevant snack bars category in Germany remains cereal bars, which generated 90% of value sales in snack bars in Germany in 2016. While fruit snacks and sweet biscuits each registered at least one year of negative development during the review period, snack bars was able to achieve positive retail value and volume growth in all years of the review period. The category has been able to benefit from various strong trends, including the snacking trend, the health and wellness trend and the convenience trend.
That the overall performance of the category was not even better in 2016 can be attributed to the fact that sweet biscuits, which accounts for the highest proportion of sales within sweet biscuits and snack bars, is a category which is suffering from the strong health and wellness trend in Germany, while snack bars and fruit snacks continue to face strong competition from other categories in packaged food and, in particular, fresh food, as these rival products are better positioned for healthy snacking in the consumers' eyes, for example due to their lower added sugar content.
The vast majority of products in sweet biscuits, snack bars and fruit snacks are purchased through modern grocery retailers channels, especially discounters, supermarkets and hypermarkets. The strongest growth of any retail channel in the category in 2016, therefore, was achieved by convenience stores, which is a rather new retailing format in Germany, meaning that growth is coming from a rather low base and largely at the expense of forecourt retailers.
Source: Euromonitor International