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Danone reduces Alpro prices in Belgium to drive growth in plant-based milk sales

Danone reduces Alpro prices in Belgium to drive growth in plant-based milk sales alternative protein, dairy, dairy alternatives, Danone, Europe, Markets, milk, plant-based, plant-based milk, Sustainability, vegan Food and Beverage Business

Danone has announced a price cut for its Alpro plant-based milk products in Belgium, in a bid to boost sales in the growing dairy alternatives market.

Although not directly linked, this move follows the release of a report by NGO ProVeg International, which highlighted that European consumers consider price to be a significant barrier to purchasing plant-based dairy alternatives.

According to ProVeg’s findings, in 2023 plant-based products in Europe were priced 25% higher on average than conventional dairy or meat products, marking a significant decrease from the 53% price premium experienced in 2022.

In response to this trend, some European retailers are adjusting prices for private-label dairy alternatives to be on par with, or lower than, conventional dairy products.

Danone’s decision to reduce the recommended retail price for Alpro Oat and Almond products in Belgium aims to encourage more consumers to try plant-based offerings. Olivier Rabartin, customer development director, BeLux at Danone, stated: “[We are] proudly putting forward our Alpro brand in BeLux, on our mission to convert more and more consumers into a flexitarian diet!”

The move comes as part of Danone’s Renew strategy – an initiative aimed at stimulating sustainable growth. Under this strategy, Danone’s Essential Dairy and Plant-based (EDP) business, which includes Alpro, has reported a 6.3% increase in sales in Q3 and 7.2% over the first 9 months of 2023, signaling positive momentum across the portfolio.

This approach has allowed for sequential progress, particularly in EDP Europe, where significant transformation initiated in Q3 of the previous year is starting to yield positive results. In addition, Danone has revised its full-year sales guidance, projecting growth between 6% and 7%.

However, it is not all smooth sailing for Danone. The report acknowledges that recent changes in its Russian subsidiary have resulted in sales being excluded from the Renew Danone report. This deconsolidation, along with other factors such as currency depreciation, has impacted sales.

Nevertheless, Danone’s decision to reduce Alpro prices in Belgium seeks to align with the evolving food and beverage industry trends, including a push towards sustainability and the ongoing quest to address price discrepancies between plant-based products and traditional dairy.

The company’s move aims to tap into emerging food and drink consumer trends by placing a lower recommended retail price on plant-based products, in the hope of gaining market share and long-term consumer adoption. Whether these actions will drive long-term shopping trends and habits will be known in six to nine months.

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