According to the report, while North America and Western Europe make up majority of chocolate confectionery revenues, the Asia Pacific region is forecast to be the fastest growing region till 2019. Driving this growth are its emerging markets, such as India, China, Thailand and the Philippines.
In fact, the market research firm predicts annual chocolate sales from the Asia Pacific to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 5.2 percent yearly and reach US$18.2 billion in 2019, compared to the US$12.2 billion that was recorded in 2013.
In contrast, growth rates for the markets of North America and Europe will only be about 3-3.5 percent.
With rising affluence in the emerging markets, a trend has been seen in Asia Pacific’s chocolate market: people of all age groups are consuming novelties, moulded bars and boxed chocolates on a daily basis, said Gaurav Bhushan, assistant manager consumer goods, TMR. This has opened up opportunities for chocolate brands to target more populations than just the youth, who were the previous sole targets.
The increasing presence of retailers and chocolate manufacturers in the region has also contributed the increasing chocolate demand. In recent years, major chocolate players such as Nestle, Mars, Mondelez, Lotte, Hershey and Ferrero have grown in Asia through mergers and acquisitions of small local players.
These manufacturers are also keeping in line with global health trends for healthier foods, resulting in their product offerings for healthier, reduced-sugar chocolates. This will likely create opportunities for chocolate players in Asia Pacific in the next six years, predicts Mr Bhushan, as health conscious consumers look for low-calorie indulgences.