Blog: Albina Green Tips
by albinagreen

Finnish organic food is no longer a niche business

Why in Finland the area of trade, which was specially created for small shops and markets, is absorbed by large retailers, and not having time to develop? As a niche business must sometimes remain a niche business?

Date:   10/27/2014 2:36:02 PM   ( 8 y ) ... viewed 815 times

The last couple of years in Finland were especially popular stores organic food. They followed the fashion worldwide movement about buying local organic products (in Finnish variant lähiruoka). On the one hand, the idea was based on the desire to stimulate the agriculture of the country. The slogan read: buying local - you are supporting an adequate standard of living in rural areas.

Organic food, on the other hand, implies that farmers refuse to pesticides because they have the opportunity to sell their products in nearby markets, and not take in other countries. Also, without spending a lot of effort for transportation, reducing the amount of harmful emissions into the atmosphere. The state, in turn, sees in organic products growing sector of the economy, and introduced various programmes to increase up to 20% of the land allocated to growing organic food, and to implement it everywhere, for example in schools.

This philosophy has resulted in an excellent market positioning - local small companies against "soulless" transnational giants, and only in the region of Uusimaa was opened 30 stores. Often outlets selling organic products, looked like small markets or old-fashioned stores on the corner. The Association of organic food has its own statistics: in 2012, the Finns bought local organic food to 202 million euros, which is 24% more than in 2011. With the growth of market share, many companies began to think about business development.

But there is another figure that is reported Finnish business magazine Talouselämä: last year, 80 percent of all purchased in Finland organic products were sold to the two largest retailers Kesko and S-Group.

You can say that, taking over the baton from small shops, large supermarkets interrupted their grandiose plans. For example, founded three years ago, the store Aitokauppa had the intention to open 30 outlets by 2015. At this point I had to hang a sign on closing on both existing store. The doors closed and the company of Turku Finska and Luomuidylli. The biggest players in this small market Eat & Joy and Anton&Anton has also scaled back expansion plans.

Chairman of the Association of organic products Marja-Riitta Kottila (Marja-Riitta Kottila) analyzes the situation in an interview Talouselämä. According to her, the interest in organic food Finns grows, however, it is still insufficient when compared with other Nordic countries. In Finland you can buy about 3000 species of such products. Most of them are dairy products.

However, the problem of small shops, she says, that they too soon appeared on the market.

Marja-Riitta Kottila notes that, on the other hand, small shops, organic food has done much to popularize and diversity of the Finnish diet. Mrs. Cotilla, however, believes that the small retailers becomes obvious how this food is more expensive.

The future for them, she just sees that stores organic food will remain in its niche and will sell more variety of products that cannot be purchased in the supermarket. That is where we started - the idea came from.

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