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Germany hygiene market: Private label players key to the industry
Tissue and Hygiene in Germany - a new market research report on 2014-04-25 00:26:04
Private label products have been, are and most likely will be extremely strong and increasingly present in the Germany hygiene market in 2012 and beyond. They are found within the top ranks of the market, alongside global players like SCA, Procter & Gamble and Johnson & Johnson, while mid-level players are very rarely present. While the top player in the market remained Procter & Gamble in 2012 thanks to strength in the largest categories of toilet paper and nappies/diapers/pants, private label is a significant force with Aldi and Lidl firmly in the top three spots. They have managed to keep up with the top brands up to 2012 through strong shelf placement of their tissue and hygiene products, despite the continued challenge of coming up with innovations.

Trends of Germany´s population shrinking and getting older on a yearly basis continue in 2012; there is a constant decline of women of fertile age, resulting in fewer children being born than people turning into the so-called Best Agers (people over 50 years of age), which gradually decreases the customer base and also causes a shift in demand in tissue and hygiene products. The new aspect, in addition to these known conditions, is an increasing sophistication of the peer group. In addition to having reasonable prices, products are supposed to be more individualised to meet specific customer demands, be it in packaging or in product quality and functionality; due to a higher information rate and better comparability, manufacturers face greater challenges to sustain sales in a highly saturated and competitive market.

Discounters dominates sales of tissue and hygiene products in Germany. While German consumers value the convenience of doing their shopping at supermarkets, which are usually closer and offer a greater variety in goods, when it comes to tissue and hygiene products they place greater weight on the convenience and a better price-performance ratio offered by discounters. Meanwhile, compared to the likes of Lidl and Aldi, which lack a nice shopping environment, health and beauty retailers hold certain appeal, encouraging relatively frequent visits from German consumers. Stores like Rossmann, have a great reputation in Germany when it comes to the shopping experience, resulting in a good proportion of tissue and hygiene sales through this channel.

Given the maturity of the industry and strong presence of private label, the industry faces an uphill battle to continue to expand during the forecast period and stagnation in constant value sales is expected. A few bright areas will nonetheless characterise the rare growth seen in the industry, including incontinence products and wet toilet paper. Otherwise, declining constant value sales are on the horizon for the majority of already mature products.

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