De Groene Weg achieves substantial turnover growth in 2020
The butcher’s shops of De Groene Weg in the Netherlands, the market leader in organic meat in the Netherlands, have enjoyed an exceptionally good year. They achieved an average turnover growth of 24% in 2020 and were able to welcome 15% more customers in their shops. The eleventh butcher’s shop opened its doors in The Hague in June of this year.
The breakdown of the turnover growth in the shops ranged from more than 10% to more than 40% in one of the largest shops. The distribution of growth in the number of clients varied from 5% to more than 30%. “This growth has accelerated even more over the past several weeks, a trend that we also observed during the first few weeks of the first lockdown,” said General Manager Allard Bakker. “Consumption of organic meat is increasing rapidly and we are certainly seeing this trend in our butcher’s shops.”
There is always a different approach
For years, the mission of De Groene Weg has been ‘Proving there is a different approach’. “The corona pandemic has revealed a growing group of consumers who are becoming more aware that a different approach is needed,” explained Bakker. “As an organic butcher’s shop chain, we are addressing that need, a fact that is clearly reflected in the figures. We have made a clear choice, and you can see that the Dutch retail sector has been less explicit in making that choice. Therein lies the ‘gap in the market’ for us, and we are keen to jump right in. Some of our butcher’s shops generate a significant part of their turnover from deliveries to the hotel and catering industry, which has been largely lost due to the first and second lockdowns. The increases in retail sales has more than compensated for this. As a butcher’s shop chain, we are very pleased with this development and will do everything in our power to maintain and further expand on this trend.”
Website and social media
De Groene Weg’s online reach has also grown substantially in 2020. This is partly due to the new website introduced at the beginning of this year, and partly due to our storytelling approach on Facebook and Instagram. “We have been sharing interviews with our butchers on social media, for example, as well as videos of the organic livestock farmers who supply us,” explained Bakker. “This lets us tell the stories that lie behind our butcher’s shop chain and gives people a better idea of what we are doing and why. We explain, for instance, why there is a price difference as compared to conventional meat. We have amassed more than 13,000 followers on these social media channels combined and we reach over 200,000 people every week. That suggests that there is a real need for this kind of communication.”
Plans for 2021
De Groene Weg, which celebrates its fortieth anniversary in 2021, will be opening the digital doors of its webshop in January 2021. From that point on, we will be catering throughout the Netherlands. This will help De Groene Weg meet the growing demand for ordering meat online. De Groene Weg is also always searching for franchisees throughout the country. In the meantime, ten shops are being operated under franchise and there is one company-owned branch in Eindhoven. The newest butcher’s shop opened its doors in The Hague in June of this year. “The franchisee of this shop enjoyed a flying start,” added Bakker.