Fazer is the second largest player in Latvia’s fresh bread market, of which it has a share of more than 20 per cent. The company maintained its position in 2013 despite a challenging year due to overcapacity, tough pressure from the largest retailers and sales driven by low prices.
Latvia’s total bread market is declining slightly in volume but stable in value. The economy priced segment takes up more than half of the market but the value-added bread segment is growing constantly. One of Fazer’s focuses in Latvia is to raise the value of bread through strong branding. Fazer has taken a forerunner role by launching new formats and healthy concepts. According to the Consumer Quality index, the quality of Fazer’s bread is above the targeted level against that of competitors.
At the end of 2013, the company introduced Select portion bread, a new bread family under the Fazer umbrella brand. Select is a completely new concept for the Latvian market and is based on international recipes. The novelties were very well received by consumers and help Fazer strengthen its image as an innovator. Good results were achieved in wheat bread where Fazer reinforced its leading position in toast and mixed loaves. Progress was also made in the frozen segment as Fazer gained customers among the biggest retail chains.
In the supply chain, Ogre is one of the forerunners in 5S implementation, which is noticable as a clean and tidy production site. 5S is a tool for improving cleanliness and order in production units. 5S creates a safe and organised workplace.
“The 5S workplace organisation method also raises work fluency and safety. Thus, its implementation supports our efforts to enhance the well-being of our personnel at our bakeries and other facilities,” states Christoph Vitzthum, President and CEO of the Fazer Group.
In confectionery, Fazer is a strong niche player in premium chocolate, accounting for about 9 per cent of the tablet market. The brand has a considerably smaller presence in other confectionery segments. Fazer’s advantages in the confectionery market are excellent brand awareness and the high quality of its premium chocolate. These are seen as a good basis for developing the business.
In 2013, Karl Fazer ranked 4th among the most beloved brands in the sweets and snacks category based on its high quality and premium taste. Although there was intense competition from both local and international players investing heavily in introducing new products during the year, Fazer novelties launched in 2013 were well received by consumers.