Simon Baxter, country manager for Vivejoy UK Ltd, answers a few questions …
Simon Baxter: We’ve seen a huge rise in consumer queries, with a large number of calls and emails coming in asking us whether Vivesoy is packaging in a nut-free environment, which it is.
Simon Baxter: In March, we saw a 70% uplift in sales on some of our lines. The uplift can’t solely be put down to the Alpro announcement, with various marketing activities occurring during the period, but the main increase in sales was from our non-flavoured drinks, which strongly suggests that it’s more regular soy users making a switch to the brand from elsewhere rather than new consumers to the category, who tend to favour the flavoured drinks.
Simon Baxter: I think it’s presented an opportunity for smaller soy drinks brands to give themselves a unique point of difference from Alpro, which they perhaps didn’t have before, and the more variety and competition there is in a sector, the better end offering for the consumer, which can only help the market.
Simon Baxter: In the short-term, I think we’ll win a lot of converts, especially within the health store trade, but by allowing other brands some market share, Alpro may find in the longer run they help themselves. We, for example, have a cappuccino-flavoured drink, which Alpro doesn’t offer, and our aim with this flavour is to attract new consumers to the category who may not previously have tried soy. Undoubtedly, some of these consumers will also purchase Alpro drinks, and hopefully between us (and some of the other soy brands), we can dramatically increase the market over the next few years.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019
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