A quarter of all food and drink products launched in Germany in 2016 carried organic claim, the highest percentage globally, according to research from Mintel Global New Product Database (GNPD).
This is up from just 18% of launches in 2012.
While Germany is currently the leading market for organic food and drink innovation, as many as one fifth of all launches in Sweden, the Netherlands (20%), Czech Republic (20%), Denmark (19%), and Austria (19%) also carried an organic claim in 2016.
In contrast, only 14% of launches in the US and 6% in the UK were organic.
Globally, 16% of organic food and drink occurred in Germany in 2016.
“In keeping with the German nation’s love for healthy, natural products, the organic market has been flourishing in recent years,” says Katya Witham, senior food and drink analyst for Germany.
“The rise in organic product innovation comes as consumer health awareness continues to grow alongside a higher environmental conscience.”
“Combined with an increasing disposable income, this fuels the uptake of organic products across food and drink categories in Germany.”
Some 22% of German consumers claim to be purchasing more organic food and drink in 2017, compared with only 17% in 2016.
The share of German adults willing to pay more for organic food and drink has risen from 18% to 24% in this time period.
This compares to 22% of consumers in France saying they are willing to pay more for organic products, with this figure falling to 17% in Poland, 16% in Italy and as little as 14% in Spain.
Parents buying organic products
German parents are especially likely to be looking for products with organic credentials.
Some 25% of German households with children say that they buy more organic food and drink, compared with 21% of those without children.
Similarly, German consumers’ willingness to pay a higher price for organic food and drink is higher among families with children.
For 27% of German households with children, organic fare is worth paying extra for, compared to 23% of respondents without children.
Furthermore, Mintel research shows that 71% of all launches carried an organic claim in 2016.
Looking to the future, it seems that the organic boom is also catching on in products targeted at adults, including alcoholic drinks.
However, organic wine still remains under-penetrated in German households, compared to other organic food and drink categories.
In 2016, only 7% of German adults reported buying organic wine, with the participation rates increasing slightly among more mature consumers aged 35-54 (9%).
There are opportunities to boost consumption, as 57% of German wine buyers are prepared to spend more on a ‘craft’ wine, while almost 30% claim to be more likely to buy a wine brand with an interesting and authentic back-story.
“Given consumer demand for natural ingredients and reassurances about provenance, organic wine makers could benefit from promoting their authentic, artisanal and ethical credentials,” says Witham.
“Organically grown wines will also resonate well with the locavore, farm-to-table movement, as well as with the rise of sustainable consumption.”
“But in order for organic wines to move out of their niche, producers will need to educate German consumers about the credentials that make organic wines worth buying.”