This is how you can see which brands are behind the discounter products

picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

Expensive branded product or rather the “no-name” private label of the grocer? On average, own brands are 45 percent cheaper than brands.

However, there is often no or no noticeable difference between the products – because the goods are often manufactured by the same producers as the brand model.

“Most private labels are often produced by the big brand manufacturers on behalf of the retailers,” explains Sven Reuter, head of the price comparison app Smhaggle. For consumers, this can be seen quickly via the identity tag or a quick Google search.

Nutella or Nusskati, Haribo Goldbären or Sugarland gummy bears from Lidl? In view of the sharp rise in prices, many consumers are likely to be asking themselves whether they would rather buy expensive branded products or the grocers’ own “no-name” brands.

Many grocers have therefore launched advertising campaigns in recent months to emphasize that they themselves have the cheapest prices – either through discount campaigns on branded articles or by highlighting the cheaper own brands. Kaufland, for example, advertised with “Discount cheap” and Edeka with “In every Edeka there is a discounter”, and the discounters Lidl and Aldi have always been fighting for price leadership.

However, many customers are not aware that the private label products often come from exactly the same manufacturer as the branded products. “Most own brands are produced by the big brand manufacturers on behalf of the retailers,” explains Sven Reuter, head of the price comparison app Smhaggle. An example: The Zott brand’s mild cream yoghurt with strawberry flavor costs 79 cents at Norma. As a rule, the branded products cost the same at all retailers, since the manufacturers negotiate the prices with the supermarkets and the like. The Zott cream yoghurt is produced by Zott SE & Co. KG at its headquarters at Dr.-Steichele-Straße 4 in 86690 Mertingen. In comparison, the mild strawberry cream yoghurt from ja! (Rewe’s own brand) only 39 cents, as well as with Netto and Penny. All three own brands are produced by Zoma Milch & Molke GmbH in Günzburg – a subsidiary of Zott.

Conclusion: Both all “copies” and the branded product itself come from the same manufacturer. So it makes no difference whether you buy the yoghurt from Penny, Rewe, Norma or Netto: they contain roughly the same things and cost the same. On average, however, own brands are 45 percent cheaper than brands, according to Smhaggle.

An analysis prepared by Smhaggle exclusively for Business Insider proves this fact for at least 7 selected products as examples. In almost all of them, the brand manufacturers were commissioned by the dealers to produce their own brands through subsidiary companies.


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According to Sven Reuter, however, brands in special offers are often cheaper than private labels. As an analysis by the price comparison company for the “Lebensmittelzeitung” showed, retailers have raised the prices for their own brands sharply in the face of inflation. So it pays to compare prices and products. Often there is no difference, or you can’t taste it, compared to the brand, according to Reuter. Stiftung Warentest has already confirmed this in various tests.

This is how you recognize it when shopping

So what can consumers do now? In the case of dairy products in particular, the origin of the product can be easily traced and compared. That’s what the identity tag is for. Retailers are obliged to print this on the packaging of dairy products.

As you can see from the table of the products reviewed by Smhaggle for Business Insider: Almost all share the same identifier. You can use the company number in particular to determine whether the private label product comes from the same company as the well-known brand.

For non-dairy products, a simple Google search usually helps to find out which parent company is behind it. If you don’t want to do it in the supermarket, you can simply do the taste test at home and trust it.

Disclaimer: This random product selection does not claim to be complete in terms of dealers and products.

The article is in German

Tags: brands discounter products

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