Introduction of cider
in the Netherlands
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Cider is readily available and
extremely popular across
Western Europe, most notably in
the UK, where around 600 million
litres are produced each year.
Other important European
markets can be found in parts
of Spain, France and Germany.
However, until recently, cider has
not been widely available in the
Netherlands, and was only rarely
present in bars and shops.
Following extensive research,
Heineken identified a gap in the
Dutch market to meet demand
from a growing number of non
and light users of beer who are
looking for an alternative to
beer, with many of the same
In early 2009, Heineken launched
two cider beverages in the
Netherlands; Strongbow Gold,
the full-flavoured traditional
English apple cider brand, and
a new brand called Jillz. Jillz is a
refreshingly sparkling cider that
plays on a strong, clear identity.
Jillz is aimed specifically at young
women between the ages of
18 and 35 years; a market that is
expected grow by around 7 per
cent each year. Strongbow Gold
is performing well alongside Jillz,
helping to build consumer
knowledge and the social
acceptance of cider in
Both Jillz and Strongbow were
backed by widespread advertising
campaigns aimed at presenting
cider as a refreshing and natural
alternative to beer and wine.
These campaigns have proven
very successful at raising
awareness for this new category
as well as the new brands.
Both on- and off-trade customers
have responded positively. First
year performance has met
Heineken's ambitious expectations
and plans are in place to drive
further growth of this category
in 2010 and beyond.
Annual Report 2009 - Heineken N.V.