Our consumers & customers
We want to be the preferred partner for our customers with the most relevant innovations for our consumers regarding health and wellness, authenticity and care for the environment.
We aim to
- Support consumers in making the healthy, nutritious and sustainable choice
- Become circular by engaging consumers and customers
- Be actively involved in the local communities where we are present
- Encourage responsible drinking
Health & nutrition
We believe in the consumer’s choice. We want to help consumers make the healthy or nutritious choice by always having an alternative to regular products, e.g. fully sugared, alcoholic, etc. We want to provide transparency for the consumer when choosing beverages.
Being a responsible company, Royal Unibrew is aware of the global challenges formulated by WHO regarding obesity and the associated risks of cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes as well as risk of alcohol abuse, linked to excess consumption of food and beverages.
We strive to offer consumers and customers sustainable enjoyment through a broad variety of beverages, complementing the setting/situation whether the individuals find themselves at a music venue, dining with family and friends, exercising, travelling or at other occasions. The purpose is to provide energy, refreshment, quenching thirst or simply a good time. Consequently, we develop, launch and supply products with great taste and with regular, low/no-alcohol and calorie content, all clearly declared. Our aim is to offer a low/no alternative in all categories and in all markets to enable our customers to offer healthier choices to the consumers. Royal Unibrew also wants to lead development of healthy and nutritious products and markets, not only by offering new products and outperforming market growth but also by investing in more information and communication about the products.
During recent years, Royal Unibrew has introduced more no/ low sugar alternatives compared to regular, e.g., full sugar products in the soft drink, water and energy categories. The volume of no sugar products increased by 11% from 2017 to 2021, while regular products increased by 6% in the same period, which indicates our short-term 2022 target of a balanced launch of regular, low and no beverages is working. In addition, the calorie content of the portfolio showed an overall 8% reduction per 100 ml during the same period.
The launch of 0.0% and low alcohol containing products (beer and cider/RTD) increased in 2021. The no-alcohol segment increased by 38% from 2017 to 2021 compared to a total of 1% decrease for regular and strong alcohol containing products in the same period, which indicates that our 2022 target of increasing the number of beverages with 0.0% and low alcohol will be met.
In all our major markets, we have leading positions within the no-calorie segments for carbonated soft drinks. In the no-alcohol segment Royal Unibrew is a market leader for beer in DK, Finland and the Baltics.
Measurements for Royal Unibrew’s goal to be THE PREFERRED CHOICE is not finalized, yet. But our goal of allocating 40% of our marketing budget to sustainability (no/low, organic, responsible, environment, etc.) shows a positive trend with a total in 2021 of 39%, excluding the acquired sites.
In 2021, Royal Unibrew made our policy on responsible drinking and labelling publicly available as it was integrated in our Business Ethics policy approved by the Board of Directors. We have more detailed internal guidelines on advertising, promotion, and sponsorships, and we consider disclosing more detailed policies in 2022. Our commitment to responsible marketing and products is unambiguous, and it is our responsibility to prioritize quality over quantity for products containing alcohol. We support a large variety of sports and health initiatives, such as ice hockey and basketball, through our 0.0% alcohol brands in both regional and local sponsorships. Promotion of responsible drinking is an integrated part of our strategy and integrated in National campaigns of 0.0% brands as well as initiatives in association with our trade associations.
- Offer no/low alternatives in all categories
- Reduce sugar/kcal/alcohol per serving
- Promote responsible drinking
In the market circularity
We want to become circular across the value chain by engaging consumers and customers. We will close the material loop, reduce the strain on resources and reduce our footprint.
Today, all Royal Unibrew’s primary packaging materials have information on either deposit return or labels on recycling. Some of the secondary packaging contains this information as well. It is our objective to expand the product information not only to include packaging material information but to include sustainability information from the entire value chain no later than 2030.
However, information is not enough in itself to reduce the footprint from packaging material. For the well-functioning deposit return systems (DRS) there are generally very high return rates, e.g., +90% in Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Estonia and Lithuania. Today, the remaining 10% is collected through the general waste infrastructure. Therefore, we will step up on engaging consumers in closing the loop, thus, enabling food grade material for recycling. Recycling campaigns are currently run together with the deposit return systems (DRS) in the aforementioned markets, and it is our plan to conduct campaigns on waste reduction and circularity in large markets by 2025 to increase consumer awareness on recycling. This also applies to our customers, where awareness and handling of secondary packaging, especially in export markets, must be improved.
In 2021, we implemented several initiatives and in 2022 we will continue the efforts. An example our new guidelines on sales material (POS). In our industry, sales material is widely used such as coasters, cups, t-shirts, umbrellas etc. Upon reviewing our Business Ethics, Environmental & Climate policies, we also revised our guidelines for purchase of POS material. In line with the policies, we have established specific requirements regarding materials, ethics, and engagement. The latter is related to using POS as an agent for nudging of consumers to make sustainable choices.
- Reduce food waste
- Engage customers in closing the loop
- Develop infrastructure
In our industry, sales material (POS) is widely used such as coasters, cups, t-shirts, umbrellas etc. Upon reviewing our Business Ethics, Environmental & Climate policies, we also revised our guidelines for purchase of POS material. In line with the policies, we have established specific requirements regarding materials, ethics, and engagement. The latter is related to using POS as an agent for nudging of consumers to make sustainable choices.
The local connection is in our DNA – we want to be present in the local communities with local brands and products, actively engaging with local consumers and customers through activities we support.
As a strong regional multi-beverage company, it is in our DNA to engage not only in the local societies surrounding our premises, sports clubs, employees’ families but also in our brand communities, with customers, other business partners and NGOs.
We strive to provide successful brands that people trust and therefore we have always been committed to contributing positively, wherever we operate and are connected. We believe, it is part of our responsibility and value as a company to drive, develop and support sustainability efforts through relevant touch points. Sourcing of local ingredients and development of local products are other examples of our local engagement.
Royal Unibrew has a number of ongoing local engagements with local sports clubs, local music scenes, city festivals, etc. We want to make these interactions sustainable. This also applies for music festivals and large sports events, where we participate. The initiatives encompass introducing organic beverages (beer, soft drinks and cider/RTD) and sponsorships with 0.0% beer, supporting preservation of freshwater in Finland and Latvia and fostering excellence in West Africa by sponsoring education of school children. We view these activities as a way to give back to society.
Our goal is that at least 50% of our engagements include sustainability elements by 2030, and for large events we are even more ambitious with 70% already in 2025.
Supporting local businesses in general is another important undertaking for Royal Unibrew. During the pandemic this has become even more pertinent, especially in relation to On-Trade customers and events. We continued to engage in activating consumers using our platforms and channels together with various customers e.g., the Ceres Bar Supporter. We kept the Danish virtual beer tasting events going to support microbreweries. With eight events and a televised program “Natholdet”, we have presented 143 beers in total, 120 being from microbreweries. One tasting event in May 2021, was adopted to the Guinness Books of World Records as the World’s largest virtual beer tasting.
- Drive sustainability in local communities, organizations, and NGOs
- Empower local players
- Develop local products
The up-and-coming musicians, who were planning concerts already in 2020, were supported in Denmark in a campaign called “The Cancelled Bands”. 15 selected bands were promoted in nationwide campaigns, enabling their stories to reach the consumer and enable the meeting between musicians and music lovers, either at concerts or via cooperation between different festivals and organizers as well as various branding activities.