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Now we would like to have an eye on the chocolate market’s future trends, to analysis how the market will go to and what our company, Divine Chocolate can react to these trends. Following the trends well can offer a higher probability to compete with substitutes, and take a larger market share. It’s better to take an expert’s suggestions into consideration, so the report below is mainly based on Joan Steuer’s market analysis and inference of the chocolate industry. Furthermore, we will combine the trends with our company to discover our opportunities, also be aware of the threats.
Joan Steuer is famous as one of America’s foremost authorities on the chocolate market, and the leading expert on chocolate trends, innovations and the chocolate-loving consumer.
Recently she indicated that there would be 10 main trends for chocolate market.
Companies and brands that demonstrate strong eco-friendly practices and direct farmer support have become as meaningful as an organic and/or fair trade label.
Nowadays, consumers are more than just focusing on good taste, they are also socially conscious. They care for the fact that whether the chocolate is produced eco-friendly and whether the ingredients are nature/organic.
As we mentioned before, Divine is partially owned by Kuapa Kokoo, who has been involved fair-trade market since 1993. Fairtrade works by giving small-scale, vulnerable producers a secure, guaranteed price which covers the costs of production. This gives them the security of knowing that they can plan for their future. http://www.bized.co.uk/compfact/daychocolate/choc7.htm
The company even changed products’ appearance, used “fair-trade” instead of the “percentage cocoa” lable.
With fair-trade concept and good cocoa source supplied from those farmer partners, Divine Company can build up a humanistic image to our customers, make a good impression on them and win market share.
Bean-to-Bar micro-manufacturer committed to excellence
Micro-manufactured bars are all the rage – bars made “from scratch” by small artisan manufacturers, often from directly sourced cacao beans, and often accompanied by deep relationships with farmers and the growing communities.
Divine’s cocoa directly comes from Africa, which means we get the access to those high quality Micro – manufacturers. That’s a good opportunity to improve the quality of our products, attach more value to them.
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Based on a market research, these micro manufactured bars are selling in the $6-10.00 range for a 2 to 3 oz bar. This fact also creates an entry barrier for new starting company, which turns out to be our advantage in business.
Hot chocolate is still hot
Hot chocolate demand is increasing rapidly. Consumers now have interest in a “thick and rich, and essentially deep, dark chocolate in liquid form”. Hot chocolate can become a large attracting market.
One of Divine’s products is “Cocoa”. But it cannot meet the market demand any more. Consumers want diversify flavors, rather than simply cocoa powder. Meanwhile, there also exist threats from coffee companies. They are also interested in the cocoa market, and try to sell “Choffy” to our customers. That fact makes them our strong competitors.
Salt Caramels, Chewy, Gooey & Found All Over.
Chewy or soft, liquid or creamy, grey salt, smoked salt, sea salt, pink salt, even fleur de sel caramels are big sellers sold as-is in simple twist wraps or drenched in milk or dark chocolate in beribboned gift boxes. As the trend of sweet with salty proceeds to flow forward, crunchy salt crystals atop chewy sweet caramels blanketed in rich chocolate continues to delight the curious and the connoisseur.
This new trend also requires our company to innovate new products to satisfy market demands. The limited types of products limit our capability to win market share and generate profit.
All-American comforting classics.Bite-Sized to Big
America has always been one of our largest markets. Their tastes are what we should focus on.
Joan summarized them as:
In addition to both traditional and more experiential caramels, we crave turtle-type confections, nut clusters and all-butter toffee, plump and puffy soft marshmallows, and pure solid dark or milk chocolate squares.
Alcohol is IN, we favor vodka, especially for soaking fruits like cherries, and margarita-flavored and infused truffles, as well as chocolate spins on Mojitos are gaining favor as are port, scotch and whiskey.
Big, fat, marshmallows & marshmallow treats. Simple, Frozen & Chocolate-Covered
Diversity creates opportunities. We would better always think more than what our customers need. To produce chocolate-related snacks, to explore new markets, and to sharpen the competitiveness of our products also means more profit.
Healthy chocolate snacks & Mixes fruits, nuts, chocolate & Nibs
Purse-sized mini bars, pocket packs of panned fruits and nuts – we’re indulging more often with small portions of wholesome chocolaty treats. More and more often, dried fruits include so-called superfruits – from more traditional dried blueberries and cranberries to the more exotic goji, mangosteen and pomegranate.
This is what we’ve already done. We offer: hazelnut milk chocolate, dark chocolate with fruit and nuts, and dark chocolate with raspberries.
Make it mine or give me fresh
With internet, it becomes easier to specialize the products just for typical customers. Special design and personalized chocolate products are appealing to customers who want to be different. Consumers can make online reservations, and we deliver the fresh made chocolate to almost everywhere in the world.
Super- high cocoa percentages. The Latest Spate Hits 80’s & 90’s
Poser connoisseurs and health nuts feigning interest in really dark chocolate joined the ranks of serious chocolate lovers and proclaimed that only chocolate above the rather arbitrary 70% was worth consuming. Now, high-end manufacturers are upping the ante with chocolate bars and truffles in the 80 and 90% range.
When extremely high percentage cocoa contained chocolates be more and more appealing to our customers, we should update our products. Our limit should not only be 70%, but the higher the better.
The care with which a product is made, including the ingredients, its uniqueness, its reason for being (beyond filling shelf space), packaging, all can be factors considered in determining an item’s value.
Consumers are now seeking not the cheapest chocolates, but the best value for their money. High-end chocolates become more and more popular. What values should be attached to chocolates tends to be one of our biggest concerns. We would better stand at where consumers want us to be, or even higher.
JOAN’S 2009 TOP TEN CHOCOLATE MARKET TRENDS
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