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  • 18 May 2023
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Nation in Conversation is the brainchild of Francois Strydom, CEO of Senwes. It is the 12th year these panel discussions exist. This specific session focused on shifting consumer food preferences and consumption patterns. Panellists in this discussion were Johan van Deventer (CEO Freshmark, retired), Wolfe Braude (Agbiz Fruit Desk), Prof Naushad Emmambux (University of Pretoria) and Marina Fourie (Red Meat Industry Services).

Emmambux said that the main cause for the change of consumer preferences has to do with the consumption of high energy-densed food vs high nutrient-densed food. “The drivers to know how consumers look like are SMART:

S = safe

M = marketable

A = affordable

R = ready to eat

T = taste”.

According to Van Deventer people experiencing financial pressure move away from ready-to-eat foods to food they can make themselves. “The biggest part of consumers has an average or lower income. You will not find a pumpkin on sale, but you will find peeled or cut pumpkin on sale. Convenience has become important.”

Fourie reckoned that South African consumers do not look the way we think they look like. “South Africa has an extremely diverse population. There are, however, a lack of knowledge under consumers. We package information differently for different segments. Different segments in the market act differently. South Africa has a very unique consumer and does not always compare to the average international consumer.”

Braude agreed that South Africans have access to media and therefore ask questions on sustainability. “This puts much more pressure on the producer.”

The shift in consumer preferences is a constant given to which the producer and the rest of the value chain should constantly adapt.

Watch this discussion here if you have missed it. Book your seat for upcoming Nation in Conversation sessions here.


Issued by Nation in Conversation: 18 May 2023

Media enquiries:

Elmarie Joynt
Senwes Group Legal Counsel & Group Company Secretary
018 464 7104 or 083 440 1345

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