Gastronomic Landscape in Russia


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  • In the first part we discuss two basic processes occurring in the minds of Russians which are represented by a sequence of certain phenomena, both of economical and social origin. In the second part we discuss the Russian taste and the roots of Russian food culture It's important to note that the conclusions we make apply to Moscow and St. Petersburg in the first place, but apparently they will extend to the other big cities with time as well as most of consumption trends do
  • Roots of consumption always lie in motivation, the consumer doesn't buy anything without a reason To explain the first process we use the Censydiam model which represents all the basic needs of a person and thus helps to understand the mechanism of consumption The pivot of the changes concerning food preferences is the home cooking trend opposed to the popularity of restaurant dining 5-10 years ago From the consumer's point of view two basic motivations are at the heart of this trend: maximizing satisfaction of one's physical and emotional needs (indulgence, enjoyment) and the need to be different, to stand out from the crowd, not drift with the current (recognition, which is all about feeling superior) Roles of each of the motivations have been different, and the status as a consequence of aspiration for self-expression became a significant factor much later (however, being very much aligned with the global trend currently named as ‘alternative status sources’ by
  • The gastronomical boom was triggered by two main factors created by the premium market: evolution of the restaurant industry and proliferation of premium retail chains The desire to learn to cook the dishes tried in a restaurant and the temptation of the continually widening product range on shelves are making home cooking to be a new kind of entertainment In response to the sudden explosion of interest in cooking a lot of dedicated media showed up, including personalities, books and TV shows As the boom reached its peak a huge number of celebrities who had never showed in public any interest in cooking before turned out to be enthusiastic cooking experts – the food and the skill at cooking it became status symbols, and the trend finally began its descent to the mass-market
  • Gastronomic Landscape in Russia

    1. 1. Gastronomic Landscape in Russia June 20, 2008 What we love to eat and why
    2. 2. Introduction <ul><li>Modern Russia experiences gastronomical boom that has an effect on a wide range of factors including taste preferences and consumption patterns </li></ul><ul><li>This presentation is to explain what &quot; great food &quot; means in Russia today and how this notion is being shaped </li></ul><ul><li>1 st part: two basic processes occurring in the minds of Russians which are represented by a sequence of certain phenomena, both of economical and social origin </li></ul><ul><li>2 nd part: overview of the Russian taste and the roots of Russian food culture </li></ul>
    3. 3. Basic motivations <ul><li>The pivot of the changes concerning food preferences is the home cooking trend opposed to the popularity of restaurant dining 5-10 years ago </li></ul><ul><li>From the consumer's POV two basic motivations are at the heart of this trend: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>maximizing satisfaction of one's physical and emotional needs (indulgence, enjoyment) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>need for being different, to stand out from the crowd (recognition, which is all about feeling superior) </li></ul>release control self other Power Recognition Control Security Belonging Conviviality Enjoyment Vitality
    4. 4. From premium to mass-market <ul><li>The gastronomical boom is triggered up by restaurant industry and proliferation of premium retail chains </li></ul><ul><li>Desire to learn to cook the dishes tried in a restaurant plus continually widening product range on shelves: home cooking as a new kind of entertainment </li></ul><ul><li>In response to the sudden explosion of interest in cooking a lot of dedicated media showed up, including personalities, books and TV shows </li></ul><ul><li>As the boom reached its peak, some celebrities turned out to be enthusiastic cooking experts – the food and the skill at cooking it became status symbols </li></ul><ul><li>The trend finally began its descent to the mass-market </li></ul>
    5. 5. Restaurants <ul><li>Last year's IPO of Rosinter, the leading casual dining operator in Russia, stimulated investors' interest in the industry. The market displays rapid growth in terms of dynamics (30% a year in Moscow) and scale (15% in regions), which is concerned with the personal income increase and the blossom of restaurant dining culture </li></ul><ul><li>Casual dining segment of the market is predicted to be the locomotive of changes: with an average bill of $20-70 and prevailing chain structure it shows the highest growth rate of about 30% a year and should probably have a great influence on the taste preferences in Russia </li></ul><ul><li>In general the industry is expanding primarily via dormitory districts of Moscow and St. Petersburg, meanwhile only Rosinter has plans for the full regional development </li></ul>
    6. 6. <ul><li>Theme restaurants also become more and more popular, e.g., beer restaurant category is currently flourishing and widely experimenting with formats </li></ul>Pilsner Urquell Original Restaurant: traditional Czech atmosphere and superpremium beer Glavpivtorg: capitalising on nostalgia with its interior of a typical Soviet institution Dymov #1: sophisticated new look of a top-notch, upscale venue
    7. 7. <ul><li>Girls love sushi and are ready to queue up that restaurant on Tverskaya street all around the year not for the very special gastronomical indulgence, as many of them tried to convince me in, but because of their weakness for all those fashionable and trendy small things, sometimes looking even weird and absurd. </li></ul><ul><li>Geojournal, blogger, 25 y.o., Moscow </li></ul>Queuing up to enter Yakitoria, the most popular mid-priced Japanese restaurant chain, became a ritual
    8. 8. Premium retailers <ul><li>Discount store had been a symbol of Russian food retail for a long time but the number of people for whom the price is of little significance started to grow recently </li></ul><ul><li>In Moscow and a few years later in St. Petersburg several premium supermarket chains were launched, such as Azbuka Vkusa or Globus Gourmet (size of the Moscow market: 150000-200000 customers)* </li></ul><ul><li>In the same time, gastronomic boutiques like Hediard or Fauchon weren’t quite successful due to the lack of tradition: premium supermarket format turned out to be much closer to middle class consumers with their need of one stop shopping </li></ul><ul><li>Prerequisites for this segment development are obvious, with the dramatically increased well-being of big cities population as the main one, but premium retailers still face a difficulty of a much deeper origin – the lack of mature consumption culture </li></ul><ul><li>Nevertheless, these elite supermarkets and boutiques make an impact on Russians' gastronomical horizon – many visit the shops as museums while mass-market oriented competitors expand their assortment little by little </li></ul>*Source: STK holding company, Smart Money magazine, September 2006
    9. 9. <ul><li>Coming to the same place to buy some routine food day by day, people begin to expand gradually their consumption area. They begin to buy premium food purposed not only to satisfy one's hunger. </li></ul><ul><li>Sergey Parkhomenko, publisher and cooking expert </li></ul>
    10. 10. <ul><li>Today, manufacturers of kitchen equipment, household electronics and large retailers tenaciously suggest the consumer to cook at home. </li></ul><ul><li>Anna Lyudkovskaya, editor-in-chief of Food Service magazine </li></ul>
    11. 11. Personalities <ul><li>While restaurants and retailers paved the way for the public interest in cooking to arouse, several famous cooking amateurs addressed their specific audiences encouraging them to take interest in certain cuisines or cooking styles by writing, speaking and giving master classes on the subject </li></ul>Stalik Khankishiev became known for his blog while living in Uzbekistan writing on proper ways to cook pilaw and shashlik, and eventually published a book and opened a restaurant in Moscow Alexey Zimin, a well-known journalist, former editor-in-chief of GQ and Afish a Mir magazines, unintentionally became a Russian analogue of Jamie Oliver writing a huge number of articles on how to cook ordinary ingredients to get unusual dishes in 15 minutes Sergey Tsigal, well-known artist who is also known for his interest in world cuisine, began hosting a TV show on traveling all around the world looking for unusual receipts Sergey Parkhomenko, publisher & political journalist, who hosts a radio show on cooking, played a vital part in evolving of the present gastronomical boom by introducing Khankishiev to the public and publishing several popular books on cooking among other things
    12. 12. Cook books <ul><li>According to the popular Moskva bookstore's statistics books on cooking have become true bestsellers lately, some of them are sold out by 500 copies a month at the price of $25-85 </li></ul>
    13. 13. <ul><li>The home connoisseur ship we see is a natural phenomenon that can be explained by the overall living standard increase in the big cities. Food and product shopping is a new form of entertainment and an easy way to learn something new, for no matter how expensive the food is in Moscow it is nonetheless cheaper to diversify one's cookery than go somewhere abroad. </li></ul><ul><li>Sergey Parkhomenko </li></ul>
    14. 14. TV shows <ul><li>TV producers keep pace with the publishers – almost every single channel has at least one cooking show </li></ul><ul><li>A few years ago a new channel was launched – &quot;Domashniy&quot;, which builds its broadcast programming around household issues, it currently runs five shows on cooking </li></ul><ul><li>&quot; Edim doma &quot; is a morning show of unprecedented popularity, while Zimin became ideological analogue of Jamie Oliver, this program is a virtually literal clone of Naked Chief's series; the host Yuliya Vysotskaya also published a vast amount of books under the brand </li></ul>
    15. 15. Celebrities <ul><li>Many celebrities have found a source of endless possibilities in cooking, making good money and building PR by writing books, hosting TV shows and opening restaurants </li></ul><ul><li>This definitely has made the status role of cooking look more significant </li></ul>Daria Dontsova, writer of countless pulp paperbooks, published an affordable book on cooking that has been remaining at the top of the charts for several months Oksana Robski, notorious 'Rublevka wife' and glamour mouthpiece, published a book about &quot;Rublevka cuisine&quot; Irina Khakamada, opposition politician of Japanese origin, published a book about Asian food Artemiy Lebedev, famous Web designer, recently opened a café
    16. 16. <ul><li>&quot; It's become much easier to cook and today one's specialty is a way of self-expression. Sure, taking someone to the restaurant is chic, but inviting the person to your place is just another level of confidence in the guest, another dimension of warm-heartedness. &quot; </li></ul><ul><li>P et r Vail, writer </li></ul>
    17. 17. Internet Thousands of Russians read and contribute to online cooking communities daily: the home cooking trend finally reached the mass-market and became a topic of UGC A lot of websites dedicated to cooking which emerged many years ago still hold the top of Alexa rating, apparently due to the loyal grown-up users Apart from that, most of the cooking magazines have websites, which attract a decent audience as well The most dynamic segment of Internet cooking is represented by blog and communities in Russian part of LiveJournal – most of the 25-35 y.o. cooking people can be found here The new generation adapts its own social networks, creating a large number of groups on cooking: several of such groups in student network '' have about 12000 subscribers each
    18. 18. <ul><li>&quot; Evidently we'll see more and more of home cooking over the next few years: high life is bridging its way to apartments and country houses – it has become much more prestigious to amaze one's guests with a homemade cod sauté than astonish them with a bill in some posh restaurant. &quot; </li></ul><ul><li>Russian Newsweek magazine, April 2007 </li></ul>
    19. 19. Food culture in Russia <ul><li>All the factors mentioned above have shaped the Russian 'premium consumer basket' in some way, and due to the complexity of the process its dynamics are very high </li></ul><ul><li>The overall attitude towards food in Russia is extremely cosmopolitan – the absence of deep gastronomical traditions on the receptor level (as a consequence of Soviet food politics) and the sudden rise of consumption in the 90s tell upon our open-mindedness concerning everything we eat </li></ul>
    20. 20. Food culture in Russia <ul><li>The consumption pattern of those Russians who earn decent money but have very little spare time can be called 'the supermarket cuisine' , consisting of the dishes that can be cooked from the basic high-quality products in 15 minutes </li></ul><ul><li>Apart from that, gastronomical preferences in Russia rely heavily on the menu of the popular restaurants , for in cooking Russians try to repeat things they tried in a restaurant </li></ul><ul><li>That's why the most popular cuisines remain the same for the long time – Russians worship those which are simple, widely represented in restaurants and based on the quality of ingredients : Italian, Japanese, etc. </li></ul>
    21. 21. <ul><li>&quot; The Soviet cookery… eliminated spices, limited sweets and simply deprived people of some basic joy of life through minimizing the presence of everything hot and spicy – pepper, mustard, horseradish, onion, garlic. The reason for such an ignorant disdain to spices and herbs was those thick-headed principles of the Soviet medicine. Its establishment banned everything hot in daily ration while smattering in the physiology of nutrition, psychology of taste, and after all the very basics of cooking. &quot; </li></ul><ul><li>William Pokhlebkin (cooking expert and historian), My Cuisine and My Menu </li></ul>
    22. 22. <ul><li>&quot; There is no such a thing as 'Russian cuisine', the tradition was slaughtered. Everything was stolen in 70 years, the generations have passed. There is a tradition established by the Stalin-era &quot;Book about Tasty and Healthy Food&quot;. That's all. This one will die too because kids have a tradition of McDonald's nowadays. Sushi bars are their tradition. We are the last generation that has any respect to the Olivier salad. End of story. Behind us are the guys that don't give a shit. &quot; </li></ul><ul><li>Anatoliy Komm, restaurant owner and molecular cuisine pioneer in Russia </li></ul>
    23. 23. <ul><li>&quot; For a person of my age*, for all the people who ate nothing in the 80-90s and then suddenly started visiting sushi bars it is as natural to eat sushi, use soy and wasabi as for my parents it is to cook meat-jelly and serve it with an ordinary horseradish. &quot; </li></ul><ul><li>Alexey Zimin, journalist and cooking expert </li></ul>*30-40 y.o.
    24. 24. <ul><li>&quot; Cuisines like Chinese rely a lot on technology , meanwhile Italian cooking rather depends on the quality of basic products – and that's precisely what matters in Russia nowadays. &quot; </li></ul><ul><li>Sergey Parkhomenko </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;Virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar and parmiggiano have become as familiar as salt or butter.&quot; </li></ul><ul><li>Russian Newsweek magazine, April 2007 </li></ul>
    25. 25. Taste preferences today april 2008
    26. 26. Taste preferences summary <ul><li>The conclusions based on the given statistics are as follows : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Italian, Russian and Japanese cuisines are all-round leaders in terms of popularity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fish cuisine has a pronounced seasonal demand: its popularity rises in August and falls in March </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Demand for Chinese food has been steadily lowering for the past half a year </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Restaurateurs tend to propose increasingly diversified food to the consumer: in 2006 more than a half of the new popular restaurants related to Italian cuisine, in 2008 you can hardly find two places with the same food in that list (while there was no competition back then as well as there's no today either) </li></ul></ul>Source: Restaurant’s Rating , April 2008
    27. 27. Organic food <ul><li>Apparently organic products are destined to become the next big trend concerning food in Russia considering the existent production base among other factors </li></ul><ul><li>Despite that, for the moment there is no room for the market growth, the main obstacles are the absence of legislative standards and the down level of welfare for the most part of the population which narrows drastically the market potential </li></ul><ul><li>However the main problem here as in the case of premium retail is simply the lack of consumption culture, Russians just don't understand what organic food means yet </li></ul><ul><li>Grunwald retail chain opened its first store in 2006 and in spite of its big plans on expansion in Russia it has yet only this one store in an elite village near Moscow </li></ul>
    28. 28. Taste preferences dynamics april 2006 june 2006 august 2006 october 2006 february 2007 april 2007
    29. 29. june 2007 august 2007 october 2007 december 2007 february 2008 april 2008 Taste preferences dynamics