July 5 2024  |  Confectionery & Fine Foods

Neuhaus invests in premium gifting and destination packaging

By Alison Farrington

Neuhaus wants to elevate its luxury gifting offer and is investing in key air hubs for seasonal promotions; here is a look at is HHP in Brussels for Valentine's Day 2024

Positioning Neuhaus as a premium, luxury and hand-crafted chocolate gifting option in travel retail has been an important strategy for the company and NPDs celebrating its Belgian heritage have been central to this development.

In the first half of the year, Neuhaus launched its History Box gifting option, firmly targeting travelers looking for premium chocolates in the travel retail market. “While this product was already available in Belgium, we have now extended its shelf life to make it suitable for the travel retail sector. The History Box is a premium gifting option that contains 28 Neuhaus pralines, showcasing over 160 years of Neuhaus heritage,” explains Mattias Top, Key Account Manager Travel Retail. The Neuhaus History Collection Box (410 grams) also includes an informative booklet about the brand’s Belgian chocolate history.

Top says Neuhaus is famous for its hand-crafted pralines made in Belgium, at the company’s atelier near Brussels, and it is committed to maintaining this tradition. “Our retail partners have warmly welcomed the History Box, appreciating its premium quality and the rich heritage it represents,” he says. The History Box has been rolled out into travel retail at several European airports already, and Top says the aim is to generate further listings in Europe throughout the rest of the year.

The Neuhaus History Collection Box (410 grams) is a new chocolate offer for the brand in travel retail; the premium gifting option contains 28 Neuhaus pralines and an informative booklet about the brand's Belgian chocolate history

Premiumization trend

The luxury chocolate market is seeing high demand according to Top. “We have observed a clear increase in demand for premium gifting options, with travelers seeking luxurious and exclusive products to take home as gifts. This trend aligns perfectly with our recent History Box launch in the travel retail market; with its 28 masterful pralines and rich heritage, it has been well-received by travelers looking for high-quality, meaningful gifts.”

Top says the company is investing in the trend for destination packaging, which is very popular among travelers looking for regional or localized chocolate purchases. “In response, we have made it a priority to launch personalized packaging in growing markets, which we call souvenir boxes. For example, we offer boxes featuring the Atomium for Belgium, the Eiffel Tower for France, and the Burj Al Arab for Dubai. These unique, destination-themed packages resonate well with travelers who wish to bring home a piece of the place they visited, making our products not just a treat, but also a memorable souvenir,” he explains.

The Neuhaus travel retail business has performed well in Q1 2024. Top says the company is on track with “significant growth” across almost all airports compared to last year. “Brussels Airport remains our largest and most important hub, where we continue to invest heavily through various activations to highlight new products and enhance seasonal offerings,” he says.

However, Neuhaus is casting it’s global travel net wider than just Brussels. “We are really looking beyond borders, with successful activations recently launched in key markets such as London and Paris, and upcoming activations in Abu Dhabi and Munchen. These initiatives are helping us to strengthen our presence and reach a broader audience of travelers,” he shares.

While rising cocoa prices and subsequent price increases are not ideal for the category, Top thinks Neuhaus is well placed to leverage the market trend for premiumization in the travel retail sector. “Regarding the overall chocolate category, people consistently seek out high-quality, luxury chocolate gifts. We have observed that in markets like Brussels, the share of premium chocolate within the total confectionery category is growing. This indicates that consumers are willing to spend more on premium quality chocolate despite broader economic pressures. This trend supports our ongoing commitment to providing premium chocolates that meet the fine tastes of our customers,” he adds.

The Neuhaus Souvenir Collection Box has been popular and the brand is looking to extend this localized gifting offer

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