Kiwis prefer NZ Made - survey

5 May 2016

Around half (52%) New Zealanders try to buy NZ made products as often as possible but it is dependent on the category according to findings from the Nielsen Brand-Origin Survey

Lance Dobson, Director, Retail, Nielsen explains, "Traditional definitions of country of origin have become blurred. Some iconic ‘local’ brands are actually manufactured abroad, while some foreign brands have built a manufacturing presence here.

"And some global brands have been in the market for so long consumers perceive them to be local. Whichever way, brand origin can be a valuable asset for both global and local companies."

When it comes to choosing a product, do consumers prefer global brands or local ones?

For fresh foods, local is the clear preference. They are able to provide farm-to-table freshness. Buying local vegetables rather than global produce is preferred by seven-in-ten New Zealanders (71% vs. 5%), a similar number of people prefer local meat (70% vs. 4%), fruit (69% vs. 5%) and milk (69% vs. 6%). These are followed by seafood (59% vs. 5%) and yoghurt (53% vs. 9%) for local preference when shoppers consider a purchase.


NZ preferences for brand origin

For packaged foods and snacks local taste preferences dominate. Among New Zealand respondents who purchase the category, local brands are preferred to global brands for ice-cream (51% vs. 9%), breakfast cereals (46% vs. 12%), canned vegetables (41% vs. 11%), biscuits (39% vs. 12%), confectionary/chocolate (37% vs. 17%) and crisps and crackers (35% vs. 12%).

Preferences are mixed for beverages. New Zealand respondents prefer local brands for juice (45% vs. 8%) and water (35% vs. 4%). Opinions are split, however, when it comes to alcoholic beverages (17% vs. 21%), carbonated soft drinks (20% vs. 21%), and coffee and tea (26% vs. 26%) but the largest percentage of people say brand origin is not important to them (37%, 36% and 39% respectively).   

With high product development costs for durables and electronic goods and the need for economies of scale, it’s not a surprise that there’s a clear preference for global brands such as computers (48%), mobile phones (46%) and cars (39%).

For personal and home grooming, the largest percentage of respondents in New Zealand say brand origin isn’t important. But for those who do think it is important, they narrowly prefer local for laundry detergent (28% vs. 17%), toothpastes (27% vs. 23%) and soap (26% vs. 19%) and global for deodorant (26% vs. 17%) and cosmetics (25% vs. 12%).

When it comes to baby care, local brands are preferred in New Zealand for baby food (62% vs. 16%) and baby formula (57% vs. 13%). This contrasts to most other regions where global products are preferred. As a milk producing and exporting nation, it’s likely our local brands have high quality and safety regulations, and to consumers this is paramount when providing for infants.

When asked the top decision factors for choosing either global or local we see that New Zealanders place most importance on price, previous good experience, promotions and better product benefits such as flavour for deciding on a brand. 

Only 14% of New Zealanders say national pride is one of the most important reasons for choosing local brands but two-fifths (59%) strongly or somewhat agree they prefer buying local brands because they support local businesses.

Read more from the survey here.

Source: Nielsen