Organic retail grows despite crisis, yet far from international standard

BIOGOOD is the latest organic store concept in Bucharest, Romania. With a EUR 1 million investment the company opened 2 locations in Dorobanti area and Feeria Shopping Gallery (Baneasa area). One can only welcome such initiatives, yet the lack of experience and international know how is evident. The Dorobanti store we visited, located just behind Radu Beller, featured a limited range of organic products, mostly packed and canned. The fresh produce was only half organic, the rest being of same standard and quality as you can find in any major hypermarket. One of the most strikingly odd things about the store is that it carries a lot of frozen foods, which are unseen in international reputed organic stores. Also, all items were overpriced, especially the packed foods, at least 20% more expensive than an organic store in Hungary or Serbia. Developers of such projects should be aware of their important role as market openers and educators of the customer. It takes much more than a nice decor and branding for such a store to become a real organic shop.
CPP Management Consultants Ltd estimated the organic concepts market will grow by 50% in 2009-2010 despite the crisis. Serbia and Hungary have also seen a rapid growth for this segment.