2022 Insight Report - Food Nation

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INSIGHT REPORT ON DENMARK AS A FOOD NATION 2022

HEALTH AND SUSTAINABILITY:
CO-DRIVERS OF EXPORT GROWTH

HEALTHY FOOD RELIES ON A SUSTAINABLE FOUNDATION

The fourth annual insight report from Food Nation explores how Denmark is perceived as a food and agriculture nation in key export markets.

In 2022, we asked decision-makers from Japan, South Korea, the UK and Vietnam about their awareness of the Danish food and agriculture sector, its unique selling points and how they perceive the capabilities of Danish exporters in relation to health and sustainability.

HIGH BRAND AWARENESS WITH STRONG POTENTIAL FOR GROWTH

SIXTH PLACE AMONG TOP-OF-MIND NATIONS

Denmark ranks sixth among the 24 countries that decision-makers mention as top-of-mind food and agriculture nations. This reveals a relatively high level of awareness relative to Denmark’s size.

However, actual exports to all four of the surveyed markets remain low, indicating significant potential to grow sales by taking advantage of Denmark’s strong image.

Denmark is best known in Japan and the UK, following a long history of exporting a diverse range of goods and services to both countries. Vietnam represents the biggest awareness hurdle of the four countries surveyed.

BUILDING BRAND AWARENESS IN EXPORT MARKETS

〉 Think and act as a challenger brand
Coming from a small country, Danish exporters have an opportunity to position themselves as daring challengers with key competences for overcoming current and future hurdles.

〉 Use ‘Made by Denmark’ in a new, modern way
Danish marketing has a traditional focus on history. Companies need to go beyond that and mix in modern, differentiating messages about innovation and social values.

〉 Shout louder and renew the contract
Geopolitical uncertainty is making a reliable food supply chain even more critical. It’s time to make more noise about what Denmark can offer and renew social contracts with international markets.

〉 Collaborate on solving key challenges
Rising prices and supply chain disruptions are making collaboration more important than ever. International, cross-sector cooperation can speed up the development of sustainable solutions and build trust.

〉 Team up with local branding and marketing partners
Local branding and marketing partnerships can help open the door to new export destinations by overcoming geographical and cultural barriers and adapting marketing strategies to local conditions.

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DECISION-MAKERS ASSOCIATE DENMARK WITH MANY POSITIVE ATTRIBUTES

PERCEPTIONS OF DENMARK VERSUS HOME MARKETS

Although 61% of decision-makers agree that Denmark is a leading food and agriculture nation, most mention their home market when asked to list top-of-mind food and agricultural production countries.

In other words, domestic markets are a primary competitor to Danish exports.

This underlines the need for companies to adapt their marketing approach to the needs and context of each export market.

%

of Japanese decision-makers name their own country as a relevant supplier of food and agricultural products and solutions

%

of South Korean decision-makers name their own country as a relevant supplier of food and agricultural products and solutions

%

of British decision-makers name their own country as a relevant supplier of food and agricultural products and solutions

%

of Vietnamese decision-makers name their own country as a relevant supplier of food and agricultural products and solutions

DANISH ATTRIBUTES THAT WIN OVER HOME MARKETS

When decision-makers compare Danish food and agricultural exports with products and solutions from their home market, there are several areas where they rank Denmark higher.

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HEALTH & SUSTAINABILITY

SUSTAINABLE FOOD SYSTEMS AND THE LINK TO HEALTH

A WORLD LEADER ON HEALTH

A large majority of decision-makers acknowledge the connection between health and sustainability – and nearly two-thirds regard Denmark as a world leader for healthy food and agricultural exports.

When asked about what they associate with health, their top three are food safety, organic and sustainability.

Decision-makers also state issues related to sustainability, food safety and food security as the key health challenges in their country.

To improve health throughout the value chain, there is wide acceptance of the need to invest in new technology.

 

VARYING DEFINITIONS OF HEALTH

The survey findings speak loudly about how health is defined on key export markets.

Jens Munk Ebbesen, director of food safety and veterinary issues at the Danish Agriculture and Food Council, advises export-ready companies to research the health agenda of individual markets before launching a sales and marketing effort.

If potential export customers are mainly concerned about health from a food safety or food security perspective, then a typical Danish focus on nutrition is unlikely to succeed.

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KEY RECOMMENDATIONS AND OPPORTUNITIES

PROMOTE PRODUCTS AND SOLUTIONS AS HEALTHY, SUSTAINABLE AND ORGANIC

Support global business partners in developing and producing products that are healthy and sus-tainable. Highlight Danish strengths within healthy, sustainable and organic food production and farming methods but be aware that definitions of organic may vary between markets.

 

FOCUS ON COOPERATING WITH LOCAL PARTNERS

Be aware of each market’s national sustainability and health strategies and establish strong local ties. Cooperation across nations and across the value chain is necessary to solve global challenges – this is an important Danish strength.

 

DEVELOP LOCAL MARKETING STRATEGIES

Seek out a local partner to support and speed up marketing efforts. Take time to understand how each market perceives health throughout the value chain, including the relationship with climate change, food safety and security, and human and labour rights in the workplace.

 

GUIDE BUSINESS PARTNERS TOWARDS TECHNOLOGIES THAT BENEFIT HEALTH AND SUSTAINABILITY

Use Denmark’s leading position within technology to guide business partners on how to invest in technology that enhances health and sustainability. Technology is a key enabler of the green transition and better health. Most decision-makers agree that new investments are necessary.

DANISH STRONGHOLDS

INNOVATIVE, SUSTAINABLE AND EFFECTIVE FOOD PRODUCTS AND SOLUTIONS

Explore the Danish strongholds

Denmark is a frontrunner in innovative, sustainable and efficient agriculture and food production. The Danish food cluster is well-known worldwide for its strongholds in areas like food quality and safety, sustainability, organic food production, gastronomy, health, ingredients, innovative technology and the unique Danish way of collaborating. We like to share our know-how, so you can be inspired in your business.

Explore the Danish strongholds now →