This was the fourth time that the group had participated in the Green Week exhibition, and with some of the biggest names in the Russian confectionery market (its three principal members are Krasnyi Okteabri, Babayevskii and Rot Front), the company was one of the most important members of the Russian delegation at the show.
Alla Orlova, head of export sales at United Confectioners, told CEE-foodindustry.com that the show had helped raise the profile of both the group as a whole and its three main brands in particular, and that this was the principal reason for the company's regular presence at the show.
"We want to show that United Confectioners is a stable and developing company, actively seeking closer partnerships with producers of processing and packaging equipment, raw material suppliers or confectionery buyers. Shows such as Green Week are the easiest way for us to showcase our products and our company," Orlova said.
Product sampling formed a large part of United Confectioners' business at the show, with its local distributor Voelker handling most of this promotional activity. Delegates were said to be particularly interested in brands such as Mishka Kosolapyi, Krasnaya Shapocika, Alenka, Nasha Marka, Tretyakovskaya Galereia, Troika, Liubimyi Gorod and Zolotoe Sufle.
The good work from United Confectioners' participation at three earlier Green Week shows was continued this year, with an increase in the number of German orders. According to information provided by Voelker, 25 per cent of people who buy Russian confectionery through the Mix Market chain of supermarkets are in fact Germans, and not ethnic Russians as had originally been thought.
"All our negotiations with big retail and wholesale operators, including the big Metro Cash & Carry group, have shown that Russian confectionery is very popular in Germany, and that exports are likely to continue to increase," said Orlova.
In 2004, United Confectioners exports to Germany were a mere 1,316 tons, but this is is twice the level registered in 2003.
Other agreements were reached during the exhibition with importers from the US, Spain, and Mongolia - contributing to the 20 per cent increase in export sales expected for 2005.
United Confectioners' turnover in 2004 was around $670 million, some 14.5 per cent higher than in the previous year.