Fully Plant-Based: Rewe Opens First 100% Vegan Supermarket in Germany

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The Rewe Group has opened the doors to its first 100% vegan store in Germany. Called Rewe Fully Plant-Based, the new space houses more than 2,700 products, and is located on a road crossed by 90,000 pedestrians every day.

Weeks after it was rumoured to be opening the store, German retailer Rewe has unveiled its first fully vegan supermarket in the country. Taking over from the previous flagship store of Veganz on Berlin’s Warschauer Brücke (Warsaw Bridge), the 212 sq m Rewe Fully Plant Based space boasts over 2,700 products from more than 300 brands.

This means that the new location nearly doubles the number of vegan items in Rewe’s regular stores (around 1,400), and blends its private-label offerings with big brands and newer startups. Visitors will find Rewe Bio, Rewe Beste Wahl, Vivess and ja! products, alongside industry leaders like Oatly and Alpro, and challenger brands such as Not Guilty, For Foodies and Greenforce.

“With Rewe Fully Plant-Based, we show how varied and large the selection of vegan products is,” said Rewe Group CEO Peter Maly, who sees this as a key test concept. “We primarily expect learning effects for our classic supermarkets. Here at the Warschauer Brücke in Berlin-Friedrichshain, we have the chance to pave the way for even more new products and brands to reach supermarket shelves. We are very curious.”

Bright yellow, rich green, warm rust red

rewe plant based
Courtesy: Christoph Grosse/Pivopex

Trade website Supermarktblog reported last month that the former Veganz store, which had changed hands last year, already had the name of the new Rewe store attached to the façade. The tagline ‘fully plant-based, totally good’ was also visible on the storefront and inside the entrance area of the store.

While Rewe declined to confirm any plans for the supermarket at the time, it has since been hyping up the opening with what the publication describes as guerilla marketing tactics at nearby subway stations, lampposts, parking meters and walls. These featured bright yellow-green banners with a QR code sporting the caption: “Berlin is getting more comfortable”.

Designed alongside the creative agency CMF, the neon colour scheme is intentional, with yellow, green and red shades donning the store with colourful triangles from ceiling to floor.

“Rewe Fully Plant-Based is an eye-catcher. Lively, striking, natural – these are keywords that have driven us,” said Rewe Ost (East) CEO Stefan Hörning. “We were able to give the well-known red Rewe logo a new coat of paint for the first time. We supplement the green letters with the simple addition ‘Fully Plant-Based’. This allows us to get to the heart of what’s in the store without any frills.”

A plethora of products for all shoppers

rewe vegan
Courtesy: Christoph Grosse/Pivopex

Upon entry, the first products visitors encounter are fruits and vegetables, immediately followed by a salad bar and vegan sushi counter. This is a deliberate move as the retailer aims to target not just vegan or flexitarian consumers, but also aims to be a point of contact for people to do their everyday shop and locals and tourists to pick up a snack or drink before heading to events or back home.

Chilled smoothies, spreads, seitan and other products can be found in fridges along the walls, while the middle of the store is adorned with plant-based milks, nuts, spices, baking ingredients and drugstore items. Then there’s a snack bar with cream cheeses and freshly made open sandwiches, while the frozen section, baked goods, chilled drinks and vegan ice cream greet the checkout area.

In fact, the latter is available as part of an in-store soft serve machine. And as for the bakery items, Rewe Berlin merchant Dennis Henkelmann (who manages the store) explained: “The supermarket is in close proximity to the S-Bahn, and there are many apartments and offices around it. That’s why we consciously rely on a large selection of baked goods. We have more than 40 products, from vegan Franzbrötchen to pretzel bagels to Sunday rolls.”

The Rewe Fully Plant-Based store also does away with regular manned cash registers, with payment only available at three self-checkout counters, or via its Scan&Go tech that allows shoppers to scan groceries as they walk through the store and add them to their cart.

Rewe Fully Plant-Based makes for a key test

rewe voll pflanzlich
Courtesy: Christoph Grosse/Pivopex

“Our range is colourful, there is everything from vegan burger sauce, ramen and wines to various snacks. We are a real supermarket, just purely plant-based,” said Henkelmann. The new supermarket has a staff of 12, all of whom have been specially trained on the vegan range.

It isn’t intended to be a temporary pop-up, but will serve as a test for similar future concepts. If it ends up being successful, Rewe could subsequently launch a corresponding initiative in Rewe Center stores nationwide, which would align with its vegan Pflanzilla approach under its Austrian subsidiary Billa.

Rewe opened the first Billa Pflanzilla store in Vienna in 2022, followed by a pop-up location in Graz last November (which ended its run in February). In addition to this, it has integrated Pflanzilla World as a mini-section in 21 of its Billa Plus stores. That’s not all – apart from the company’s own-label plant-based lines, it previously launched a plant-based meat counter in a Kaarst store after seeing a 45% hike in meat-free sales, and dropped the prices of vegan products to either match or be cheaper than their conventional counterparts in Billa and Penny stores.

“We have special products, including lots of fresh things. With us you can try out new things, much of our range is organic. Here, young companies with new ideas have the chance to get one of the coveted places on the supermarket shelf,” said Horning.

“We have been recognized several times in the past as vegan pioneers in the food trade, and the strong response from our customers also encourages us,” added Maly. A survey commissioned by the company last year found that 58% of Rewe customers have bought vegan products previously, and 27% replace animal-derived foods with plant-based analogues several times a week.

With 90,000 people crossing the Warsaw Bridge every day, footfall shouldn’t be a concern for Rewe. Neither should consumer response, given that Germany is the largest plant-based market in Europe, with 59% of consumers reducing meat consumption, and its government has earmarked €38M in its federal budget this year to support alternative proteins and open a Proteins of the Future centre.

And last month, the German Society for Nutrition updated its dietary guidelines to recommend halving meat consumption, limiting dairy intake, and eating more plant-based foods – with the latter suggested to make up at least 75% of diets in the country.


  • Anay Mridul

    Anay is Green Queen's resident news reporter. Originally from India, he worked as a vegan food writer and editor in London, and is now travelling and reporting from across Asia. He's passionate about coffee, plant-based milk, cooking, eating, veganism, food tech, writing about all that, profiling people, and the Oxford comma.

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