Are you a Weber? Or LOHAS?
Never heard of them? They are the latest nickname and acronym used to describe the sought-after lifestyles on which the wealthy publicly pin their prosperity – at least that’s the case in German social circles.
Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC)’s agent in Germany, Patricia Czerniak explains, “We call our target market for Premium Welsh Lamb in Germany the ‘Weber Grill’ consumer – colloquially ‘The Webers’.”
“These are essentially men, all of whom are into the projection of a Lifestyle Of Health And Sustainability (LOHAS). They used to compare their cars and their watches against each other, and now they compare their Weber barbecue grills”, she said.
“Seriously, we have emerging on-line stores that specialise only in high-end meatto cater for these special, time-poor consumers and their peers.”
Welsh Lamb is gaining ground in Germany and was launched in Dodenhof, the flagship superstore of Dohle Gruppe, located in Posthofen near Bremen during late December. “Expanding on it’s current supply in Frische Paradies - Germany’s largest speciality market and supplier of fine foods, PGI Welsh Lamb is taking a leap into the German retail sector with its brand ‘The Welsh Butcher’. Dodenhof will sell Welsh Lamb as a test store, aiming for a wider listing with Dohle Group’s approxiamtely 75 HIT!-Stores”, said Patricia.
She said they fitted in alongside the ‘Weber’ grouping – “We now have magazines called ‘Beef’, which aim at their top tier managers. They have become meat connosseurs. They want to know everything: where the meat comes from; its quality; they show off their knowledge at parties and even hold classes where they invite people to speak about types and traits of meat”.
Patricia said independent retailers have started to emerge to cater for the LOHAS consumer. “Lifestyle shops, niche markets that target high worth individuals. They buy the best meats from all over the world and sell them over the counter. People who used to know their wines, whiskies or cigars – they today, know everything about their meat”.
Patricia, who has represented PGI Welsh Beef and Lamb in Germany for ten years said some larger retailers now even had dry aged meat chambers with internet cameras so these top end consumers “can log on, from their board meeting to watch their meat mature”.
She said the next trend, taking the concept of ageing meat further in Germany was meat aged with sparkling water. “It shows you that top earners are trying out all sorts of stuff; what I’m trying to tell them is to stop fussing around, and buy the best fresh meat available. That’s where Welsh Lamb is positioned in Germany – as the very best lamb in the world.”
“I’m proud to be working with HCC, in this climate, if I didn’t have a product that held a strong top tier branding, then I wouln’t be able to sell to the German consumer”, said Patricia.