Asia Pacific’s FMCG spending recorded a 2% increase in 2022 compared to 2021. Spending on food was prioritized, with an increase in spending on packaged food, snacks and confectionery and frozen food.
In the Dining into the APAC Food Trends report released by NielsenIQ in March 2023, analysts identified three key food themes.
With the rise of remote work, individuals find themselves spending more time at home. This has also led to a shift in their dietary preferences, meal choices, and shopping behaviors.
Packaged food, dairy, bakery and frozen foods have a market size of US$191 billion in 2022. Consumers continue to value the convenience of frozen foods, especially those that require minimal preparation. Quick and easy-to-make frozen meal kits, instant noodles, and ready-to-eat options are popular.
The market size for snacks and confectionery is worth $61 billion in APAC and growing 6% in 2022. Snacking and confectionery categories are bouncing back as markets open again.
The snacks and confectionery sector will be driven by the following factors:
Analysts see a growth in the premium snacks and confectionery sector, targeted at consumers seeking high-quality ingredients, unique flavours and limited edition releases. The use of high-quality, premium ingredients is a hallmark of this sector. Brands focus on sourcing ingredients with superior flavour profiles and nutritional value, such as single-origin chocolates, exotic fruits, and gourmet nuts.
Consumers are increasingly looking for snacks and confectionery items that align with their health and wellness goals. This has led to a rise in products with reduced sugar, lower sodium, healthier fats, and natural ingredients. Brands are incorporating functional ingredients like nuts, seeds, and dried fruits to offer more nutritional value.
37% of APAC consumers say there are more likely to buy a brand based on nutritional benefits. Having transparent labelling that clearly communicates ingredients and their sources will help to appeal to consumers. Clean label snacks and confectionery items that have simple, recognizable ingredients are gaining popularity.
Snacks that offer functional benefits beyond satisfying hunger are gaining traction. These include snacks enriched with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other health-promoting components.
3. Sustainable Consumption
Sustainable consumption trends reflect the growing awareness and concern for environmental, social, and ethical issues related to consumer choices.
- Sustainable eating: Plant-based alternatives
Growing concerns about animal welfare and environmental impact have led to a rise in plant-based and sustainable diets. Consumers are reducing their meat and dairy consumption, opting for plant-based alternatives, and seeking out sustainably sourced seafood.
Most food packaging is designed to be single-use and they are typically thrown away rather than reused or recycled. Increasing awareness of the environmental impact of packaging waste, such as plastic pollution in oceans and landfills, has prompted a sense of urgency to address the issue. Consumers are demanding more sustainable packaging solutions to reduce waste.
45% of consumers say they will buy more recycled packaging in the next 6-12 months. large FMCG companies are stepping up their sustainability initiatives. Consumers are increasingly making purchasing decisions based on sustainability considerations. Brands that offer environmentally friendly packaging are more likely to attract and retain customers who prioritise responsible consumption.
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