APAC’s probiotics and postbiotics market

Tuesday, December 12th, 2023

Trends in APAC’s probiotics and postbiotics market

The global probiotics market is gaining momentum and expected to hit US$105.49 billion by 2028, with Asia Pacific being the fastest-growing region, taking up the largest market share. This opens strong opportunities to meet rising consumer demand for fortified food and beverage products. Contributed by Catarina Rodrigues, Senior Marketing Manager, Supplements, Kerry APMEA, and Dr Monica Maria Olivares, Kerry Global RD&A Director, Women and Infant Health, who presented their insights on microbiome at Fi Asia Bangkok 2023.


Probiotics, along with prebiotics and postbiotics, are part of a group of microbes crucial to gut health. Probiotics are live bacteria in the digestive system needed to keep the body healthy. Prebiotics are what probiotics feed on for growth, and postbiotics are the byproducts produced by the life cycle of probiotics. Together, they make up what is usually known as ‘good bacteria’ that keeps the balance in the gut.


As consumers demand more health-based solutions amidst health concerns and rising preference for natural products, the market is projected to flourish. Mordor Intelligence estimated the global probiotic market value to be at US$73.38 billion in 2023 and forecast its growth at a significant 7.53% CAGR from 2023 to 2028.


Asia Pacific leads the probiotics market. Research and Markets projected the region to experience a 9.5% CAGR from 2022 to 2027, positioning APAC as a market leader in the probiotics space, with China and India as key countries for growth. The demand is fuelled by the region’s growing senior population and rising awareness of the importance of probiotics in diets. 


Various government initiatives that encourage probiotic-enriched products to address national health are also driving demand. For example, China has included probiotics in the infant formula segment to boost infant nutrition, and India is promoting fortified foods as part of their nationwide health campaign to address malnourishment.


Asia Pacific is also one of the top players in probiotic supplements, one in five new probiotic supplement launches came from Asia Pacific, with the region making up 22% of all global launches, after US and Canada (45%) and Europe (30%).



Digestive health remains top benefit while emerging subcategories show potential

An Innova study showed that consumers are interested in having probiotics (43%), prebiotics (37%), and postbiotics (28%), as functional ingredients in their supplements and food and beverages. In fact, digestive health (43%) is the top benefit consumers associate with ‘biotics followed by immunity.


Other categories are also emerging, as consumers become more aware that these microbes can support other aspects of health such as energy and stamina, better sleep, weight loss, mood, and cognitive health, opening more opportunities.


This is evident from recent ‘biotic-enriched supplement launches around the world that have energy and stamina claims (32% CAGR), brain and mood health claims (30% CAGR), and heart health claims.


Probiotic-enriched products are going into new formats

According to an Innova report, dairy is the largest category for probiotic-enriched products, making up 38% of all new global food and beverage and supplement launches in 2020 and 2021. This is followed by supplements (21%) and baby and toddler products (20%).


But while probiotics has established itself in dairy, yoghurt, and baby cereals and biscuits, probiotic-enriched products in new formats have emerged.


Probiotic-enriched ambient desserts, or desserts that can be stored at room temperature, such as puddings and jellies, saw a 149% CAGR from 2019 to 2022. This is followed by emerging probiotic-enriched product formats like baby snacks (79% CAGR), chocolate (67% CAGR), cold cereal, and cereal and energy bars.


Potential postbiotics market

As the preventive health trend continues to boost demand for natural solutions, manufacturers around the globe are also taking notice of postbiotics. Recent product launches across the globe include sparkling kombucha, dietary supplements, and even vegan supplements.


A report by Meticulous Research projected the postbiotics market to reach US$24 million by 2029, with Asia Pacific as the fastest growing region. The report also identified the sports nutrition industry as the key driver for growth in the market.


There is also potential in synbiotics, which is a combination of prebiotics, probiotics, and postbiotics. These can be seen applied as blends in dietary supplements that support digestive and metabolic health, even a trimmer waistline. 


As consumers become aware of the connection between diet and health, demand for ‘biotic-enriched products will continue to grow. The nature of ‘biotics’ ability to support a wide range of health concerns means we can look forward to more innovation in the field.



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