CCM: On 4th November, the China Association for Quality (CAQ) has published the 2016 National Consumer Satisfaction Research on Liquid Milk. The study reveals, that the satisfaction of Chinese consumers is decreasing, compared to 2015 and demands for the quality of milk are changing. Suppliers have to be prepared for the changing needs of their Chinese customers.
The results of the research can be summed up in four main points, according to CCM. The first trend shows, that characteristics like consumer satisfaction, brand image, and perceptual quality are all decreasing in the survey, namely 1 point, 1 point, and 2 points respectively. This slight fall doesn’t seem to be important, nevertheless it is showing a trend that should be seen as a signal for milk selling companies. Consumers are attaching more value to quality and reputation of the milk. The research also states, that consumers respond little to Sales promotion in general and be negatively affected by price hikes, which lowers their satisfaction levels again.
Another result of the report is the high popularity of fresh milk and UHT milk among the Chinese consumers. The benefit of UHT milk is caused in the insurance, that the high temperature sterilization provides a long shelf life and kills dangerous bacteria. This guarantees a well fit into the modern life style of a growing number of Chinese customers. Therefor, 31.2% of those questioned prefer the UHT milk, according to the report. The second highest preference belongs to fresh milk. The main benefit hereby results of the higher nutritional value in fresh milk. Also notable is the rising taste of formulated milk such as flavored milk, namely chocolate milk and vanilla milk.
The third point of the most important results contains the high preference of liquid milk over milk power. This is explained with the rich nutritional properties in liquid milk. The main nutritional is calcium.
The last result deals with the distribution preference. According to the survey, almost 90% of the participants like to buy their milk in the good old supermarket. The next choices are convenience stores and also delivery by the manufacturers directly. Although the market of online purchases is growing in general, for milk this is only a weak distribution share. Less than 2% of the milk is purchased via E-commerce, according to the report. The supermarket still represents the most convenient place to get the daily doses of calcium for the Chinese consumers.
Suppliers of milk should have these changes in mind, when promoting and selling their milk brands in the Chinese market. It is true the consumption of liquid milk has a slower growth in general the last years, but the changing preferences are for sure an opportunity for milk suppliers to approach the Chinese changing needs and ensure the share of their milk brands in the Chinese market.
The China Association for Quality released the research on 4th November for the sixth time since 2011. The investigation contains surveys of more than 9,000 Chinese consumers from 31 provinces in whole China. Those questioned could select between 31 brands and the surveys were carried out online and on phone interviews. In the survey, it is possible to rate between 0 (complete unsatisfied) and 100 (complete satisfied) points. The average value of the points was 74, a four percent loss compared to the value of 2015.
Source CCM, China Association for Quality
The graphic shows the development from 2012 to 2015. The index is separated into three fields: Consumer Satisfaction Index, Perceptual Quality Index, and Consumer Confidence Index and shows the industry average of those. According to the figure, all three areas had the lowest value in 2013 and were growing constantly since then. In the newest report from 2016, there will be another fall in the satisfaction value, as discussed earlier.
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