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    Studies Shine Spotlight on Growing Kosher Market

    NEW YORK -- Kosher food shoppers are no different than many other grocery shoppers in that they want more new products that they can find easily, according to a study of the segment released at 18th annual Kosherfest trade show here recently.

    NEW YORK -- Kosher food shoppers are no different than many other grocery shoppers in that they want more new products that they can find easily, according to a study of the segment released at 18th annual Kosherfest trade show here recently.

    The study, conducted by Cannondale Associates, concluded there are many types of kosher consumer, including Jewish and non-Jewish shoppers, those who find a link between Kosher and natural/organic foods, and those who are vegetarian and/or lactose- and gluten-free. They spend about $1,000 more annually than the average buyer. Generally, Kosher consumers want a wider assortment of categories, not more brands, the research revealed.

    The kosher section is where most of the consumers find new products. Stores that offer deep discounts don’t drive kosher holiday traffic more than stores with lesser discounts. More kosher holiday categories also apparently lead to more holiday purchases.

    The study analyzed shopper card transaction data from 14-plus food and drug retailers, with 10 million households over 5-plus years.

    Meanwhile, kosher food companies are growing at a rate of between 10 percent and 15 percent, according to an annual kosher food company survey conducted by Lubicom Marketing and Consulting, which co-produces Kosherfest.

    "While last year's growth was due to an increase in wines, cheeses, and sauces, snack foods and an increase in frozen food options are currently hot items in the kosher food industry, as are new wines from Israel," said Lubicom's c.e.o., Menachem Lubinsky.

    Added Rabbi Moshe Elefant, executive rabbi and c.o.o. of the Orthodox Union (OU), the world's largest kosher-certifying agency: "Across the board, the new popular kosher items are snacks, cakes, and new wines -- expensive wines from around the world, not just from established wineries."

    Elephant also cited such trends as new kosher liquors (Absolut Vodka recently sought kosher certification); exotic cheeses; an increase in kosher products from China, Eastern Europe, and the former Soviet Union; and prewashed vegetables.

    Among Lubicom's other findings are that 10.5 million kosher consumers live in the United States, about 21 percent of Americans buy such products because they keep a kosher home, the dollar value of the kosher market is about $10 billion, and the dollar value of kosher goods produced in the U.S. is $175 billion.

    Cannondale Associates is a marketing and sales management consulting and software solutions firm with offices in Wilton, Conn. and Evanston.

    Kosherfest, the largest international kosher food and foodservice trade show, is co-produced by Diversified Business Communications and Lubicom.

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