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Deriving business opportunities based on trends

How DMK Group established a high-performance trend management using the ITONICS Innovation OS



food trend fields
"Crucial for the success of our project was ITONICS’ expertise in trend management. We were not just looking for a software partner, but for someone who is familiar with the topic and who we can trust."
– Barbara Siegert, Head of Innovation / Corporate Strategy, DMK

Early identification of business opportunities based on food trends

The identification and interpretation of trends are some of the most important activities in innovation management. Trends reflect consumer needs and changing consumer behaviors over time.

DMK Group, one of the leading dairy companies in Europe, is faced with new technologies, changing customer habits, and a fierce international competition in its industry. The early identification of new business opportunities on the basis of relevant food trends is becoming an essential task to meet future challenges.

Trend Radar DMK

Innovation at DMK

  • Limited resources for trend management
  • Time-consuming aggregation, evaluation and documentation of scouting results
  • Manual trend scouting activities
  • Knowledge sharing within the trend scouting community needs improvement
  • No integrated network of internal trend scouts

Objectives of a trend management platform

"Structured trend management forms the basis for the development of innovative concepts that consumers want. That is why we were looking for the ideal partner to support us in innovation management in order to make scouting, networking, and evaluation of trends even smarter."
– Kristin Mitlewski, Innovation Manager / Corporate Strategy, DMK


DMK’s new high-performance trend management unit

Supported by ITONICS Radar and ITONICS Inspirator, DMK Group implemented a powerful trend management process from trend scouting to the derivation of new business opportunities and scouted over 2,000 relevant inspirations in five food trend areas with only a small scouting team.


1. Trend scouting

Trend scouts continuously collect trends or inspirations e.g. from trade fairs, exhibitions or industry events. As a documentation tool, the DMK trend scouts use the mobile application ITONICS Inspirator. The app was able to leverage the internal trend scouting process.

2. Evaluation & documentation

The trend scouting results are automatically linked to the collaborative online platform ITONICS Radar where they are aggregated to weak signals and trends. The trend knowledge can be updated, shared, communicated, discussed, evaluated and analyzed within the trend management unit. The trend evaluation and analysis are the basis for the opportunity space identification.

3. Recommendations for action

The DMK trend management then advises the business units on identifying new opportunity spaces based on the trend evaluation and analysis. These will provide a basis for the development of new products for a wide variety of business areas.


  • Reduced time to collect, aggregate and analyze trend knowledge
  • Better and faster recommendations on business opportunities for the individual business units based on profound trend knowledge
  • A small team can now manage the entire trend management of the DMK with the help of the collaborative online platform by ITONICS
  • Integrating internal trend scouts who collected 2,000+ relevant inspirations at 30 trade fairs and conferences within one year
  • DMK actively uses the trend inspirations for innovation workshops to boost creativity.
  • Accessible trend knowledge for the whole community and removal of individual data silos
  • Establishment of a new innovation mindset with a common language for trends and innovations across all departments
  • Stronger visibility of trend and innovation management within the company
  • Increased accuracy for the trend identification thanks to the integration of external and internal trend knowledge.

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About DMK

With around 7,700 employees at more than 20 locations in Germany, the Netherlands and other international hubs, Germany’s largest dairy cooperative processes milk into food of the highest quality.

The product portfolio ranges from cheese, dairy products and ingredients to baby food, ice cream and health products. As one of the largest suppliers to the German food retail industry with a total revenue of 5.6 billion euros, DMK Group is one of Europe’s leading dairy companies.

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