The demand for baby food is witnessing a major surge due to increase in parental concerns for nutrition. Baby food is soft in nature and specifically targeted towards infants between six months to two years of age. These are available in multiple varieties, forms and tastes. Baby food is inclusive of food that has been mashed or made easily available and can be purchased from retail shops. Rising number of working women is the major factor driving the demand for baby food, thus creating an opportunitiy for manufacturers. Further, professionally made baby food is a perfect solution for breast feeding problems. Owing to the need of fulfilling the nutrition requirements of babies, such baby food helps to prevent the under-nutrition problem in babies. Adoption of modern lifestyle in developing nations is resulting in increasing the population of working women, thus fueling the demand for baby food market. This is mainly influenced by the western culture in terms of lifestyle and feeding habits among others. This factor is also backed by the increasing disposable income of consumers that has led them to provide a healthy lifestyle for their babies. High birth rate in North African and Middle Eastern countries is also driving the growth of this industry. Asia-Pacific is also a lucrative region for the growth of baby food market and owing to its highly lucrative nature, major manufacturers are looking to penetrate this region for expansion opportunities.
However, the market is held back by the declining birth rates in the developed countries. This factor is greatly barring the growth of baby food market at present. Further, lactose intolerant babies are another restraining factor for the global baby food market. However, product development through extensive research and development activities is a suitable growth opportunity for this market. Further, aggressive marketing and promotional activities adopted by these players would also ensure the proper growth of this industry in the future.
The global baby food market is bifurcated on the basis of product types into baby snacks, frozen baby foods, soups, bottled baby foods and cereals. Bottled baby foods dominated the baby food market in 2015 and is likely to continue market dominance throughout the forecast period. Cereals are likely to follow bottled baby foods in terms of revenue. Owing to the easy availability and ease of handling of bottled baby food products, it has gained acceptance from the consumers as a suitable choice for their babies. However, frozen baby food products are expected to witness a rapid growth during the forecast period.
The global baby food market is also segmented on the basis of regions into Europe, Asia-Pacific, North America, Latin America and Middle East and Africa (MEA). The global baby food market is dominated by North America followed by Europe. Although, due to declining birth rates in these countries, the possibilities of new opportunities are declining in these regions. However, the growth of market would be sustained by rapidly developing countries such as India, China and Vietnam among others owing to the high population in these countries. Asia-Pacific is expected to witness fastest growth during the forecast period. Rapid urbanization is another major factor behind the rapid growth of baby food market in Asia-Pacific. North Africa and Middle East are also anticipated to push the demand forward for baby foods in near future.
The global baby food market is marked by some strong competition from major players operating in this market. Frequent acquisitions and mergers, partnerships, joint ventures and product innovations are some of the strategies used by players operating in this industry. Abbott Laboratories, Bledina S.A., Groupe Danone, Nestle S.A., and Hain Celestial Group among others are some of the key industry particiapnts operating in this market.