Food firms dominate list of top FMCG product innovations

By Oliver Morrison contact

- Last updated on GMT

©Creditphive2015
©Creditphive2015

Related tags: Nestlé, Cadbury, FMCG

Food and drink brands lead the way in product innovation in today's fast-moving consumer goods sector, according to a new list released by Nielsen.

The Top 25 Breakthrough Innovations list celebrates recent product innovations across various FMCG categories in Europe.

The list included Nestlé for its range of ice lollies launched in Russia, its nitrate-free ham launched in France and its gluten-free pasta unveiled in Italy. Also featured were Cadbury-owner Mondelēz International for its milk chocolate wafer snack, Cadbury Roundie; Dutch coffee maker Jacob Douwe Egberts B.V. for the luxury coffee brand L’OR Classique; General Mills for its Nature Valley granola snack bars; Italian food brand Barilla for its new biscuit for Italian consumers, Buongrano Mulino Bianco; and Heineken for its Heineken 0.0 alcohol-free beer, which entered the French market, and the launch of its first cider brand in Spain.

The qualifications for the list covered requirements for distinctiveness, relevance, endurance, and the broader strategies employed by brands to make them successful.

These brands showcased exceptional abilities to win market share and deliver growth, said Nielsen, by listening to consumer needs and optimising package and product design. This included strategies such as offering new formats of currently existing popular products.

NIELSEN’S TOP 25 BREAKTHROUGH INNOVATIONS IN EUROPE (in alphabetical order)

Product

Company

Country

Bon Pari Koshmariki

Nestlé

Russia

Buitoni La Sfoglia Rotonda Senza Glutine

Nestlé

Italy

Buongrano Mulino Bianco

Barilla

Italy

Cadbury Roundie

Mondelēz International

UK

Couches Lotus Baby

Essity

France

Danissimo Shake & Go

Danone

Russia

Diet Pepsi Wild Cherry

PepsiCo

Russia

Diplomatico Mantuano

Destilerías Unidas S. A. (DUSA)

France

Epica Protein Yogurt

Ehrmann

Russia

Felix Doubly Delicious Dry Cat Food

Nestlé Purina

Russia

Heineken 0.0

Heineken

France

Herta Le Bon Paris Conservation Sans Nitrite

Nestlé

France

Ichnusa Non Filtrata

Heineken Italia S.p.A.

Italy

Judith Williams Cosmetics

Judith Williams

Germany

Knoppers NussRiegel

Storck

Germany

L’OR Classique

Jacobs Douwe Egberts B.V.

UK

Ladron de Manzanas Cider

Heineken

Spain

Lenor 3in1 Pods

Procter & Gamble

Germany

Lenor Inspiré par la Nature

Procter & Gamble

France

M&M Bâtonnets

Mars Wrigley Confectionery

France

Magnat Champagne & Strawberry

Unilever

Russia

Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink

L'Oréal

Spain

Nature Valley Bars

General Mills

UK

Oral-B Répare Gencives et Émail

Procter & Gamble

France

Perwoll Care & Refresh

Henkel

Germany

Purina Gourmet Gold Tortini

Nestlé Purina

Italy

Some of the most successful innovative products ranged from ‘special-treats’ to products that tap into the increasing consumer trend towards healthier and free-from options. Others aimed at growing an existing core brand, or appealing to different kinds of consumers such as premium shoppers.

Smruti Kulkarni, Europe Leader, Machine Learning & Design Solutions at Nielsen said: “Over time, consumer needs and attitudes have evolved, with the emergence of e-commerce, private labels and exposure to digital platforms providing personalised messaging from brands. This fierce competition for consumer’s attention has made product innovation a challenging feat for FMCG companies.”

He added: “Successful innovation can come in many different forms — some could be disruptive game changers, while others could be launched to fend off competitive pressure, or with the idea of tapping into an emerging consumer trend. Some of these brands have challenged the traditional notion of success. Across Europe we can see some remarkable innovation stories where different approaches have been taken to solve a business problem.”

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