And the winner is: the Marketing Oscar goes to … Katjes!

Düsseldorf, 19 November 2019 – Katjes Fassin GmbH + Co. KG is awarded the 2019 German Marketing Prize. Katjes delivered a compelling marketing performance for sustainability, product development, advertising, communication and sales services.

In 2010, Katjes began to focus on vegetarian products and successively transition its range. By 2016, the transition was complete; all Katjes products are now vegetarian and completely free of animal gelatine. The target group for this strategy is young women the ages between 14 and 49 who want to enjoy sweet treats with a clear conscience. These are women who enjoy trying out new things and are savvy about trends. Katjes has geared itself towards people for whom being vegetarian and pursuing happiness are deliberate life choices. Across the product range, the focus is on the latest trends and strong visual content, sometimes provocative, that tells a richly emotional narrative.

The marketing strategy was developed by antoni jellyhouse in Berlin and exudes an appeal which is always light-hearted but never shallow. This custom agency was set up especially for Katjes.

Katjes has identified three target groups for its 100% vegetarian product range: vegetarians, flexitarians and those with special restriction diets, for whom avoiding the consumption of pork, including gelatine, is important. In Germany, gelatine is mainly made from pigs. The Katjes brand campaign ‘Yes! All veggie’ was launched in 2018 and hones in on the emotions and content that interest Katjes’ widely diverse target group.

Katjes’ marketing strategy takes a stance, is closely consumer-oriented and has been rewarded by an increase in sales: in 2017, sales were +13% higher than 2016. In 2018, Katjes continued to grow, with sales increasing by a further +11% compared to 2017 – despite a general downturn in the sweets market (Source: Nielsen). In 2018, when the transition to 100% vegetarian production was complete, Katjes changed its strategy from product heroes (Yoghurt-Gums and Grün-Ohr Hase) to a new brand promise: ‘Yes! All veggie’.

When Katjes introduced animal-free products, not everyone was convinced that this was the right step. Tobias Bachmüller reports: ‘Right from the start, we realised that as number two on the market, we needed to differentiate ourselves as clearly as possible from market leader Haribo. Aligning ourselves to the status quo and copying the others as best we could would have been completely counterproductive!’

Today, three years after transitioning to a 100% vegetarian product range that includes various vegan products, Katjes has developed into a true German success story and won numerous awards. When Katjes was awarded the German Marketing Association’s German Marketing Prize in 2019, it was like winning the marketing equivalent of an Oscar.

‘The German Marketing Prize is really special and it’s a great honour to win it. The DMP is not just some random award, it’s the most coveted marketing prize in Germany – the Oscar of the marketing industry, one could say – and the highest award that a company in Germany can win,’ smiles Gloria Thyssen, Global Marketing Manager for Katjes. And further: ‘This success is predominantly due to our strong team. They understand what our consumers want, and they continuously channel this knowledge into creating innovative new products.’

‘The German Marketing Prize is the top award in Germany for exceptional performance in all aspects of marketing. To win the German Marketing Prize, companies need to take a holistic approach: price, sales, digitisation, communication, advertising and products must all be outstanding and backed up with numbers. Marketing as a function needs to be visible. Katjes has boldly, consistently and successfully mastered the elite field of purpose-driven marketing,’ explains Dr. Ralf E. Strauß, President of the German Marketing Association and Chairman of the European Marketing Confederation (EMC). And further: ‘The German Marketing Prize is a seal of approval for exceptional work and can be awarded to specific people as well as to entire companies. Marketing is never an individual achievement; it’s always teamwork.’

About Katjes Fassin

Katjes Fassin GmbH + Co. KG is based in Emmerich, in the Lower Rhine region of Germany. Comprising the Katjes, VICKS cough sweets, Ahoj-Brause and SALLOS brands, it is one of the three largest sweet manufacturers in Germany. The Katjes brand is considered a pioneer and trendsetter in the field of vegetarian fruit gums and liquorice. The company does not use any animal gelatine in the manufacture of its products, and the entire Katjes range in Germany is now completely vegetarian. Products are manufactured locally at three production sites across Germany, all of which have been carbon-neutral since 2020.

Katjes Fassin GmbH + Co. KG is a legal entity in its own right and forms part of the Katjes Group alongside its affiliates Katjes International GmbH + Co. KG and Katjesgreenfood GmbH + Co. KG.

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Contact: Katjes Gloria Blumhofer,, Phone: +49 (0)2822 601224

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