Market Focus: Trends and Developments in the Confectionery Sector in UK

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Product Synopsis

This report provides a concise overview of the Confectionery market in the UK. After reading this report, you will understand the size of the market, the economic, demographic, and behavioural trends that will drive its evolution and the leading players within the market, allowing you to plan effectively for the future.

Introduction and Landscape

Why was the report written?
This overview of the consumer and market dynamics of the UK Confectionery sector allows new entrants and established players to gain rapid and comprehensive insight into the current state of the market and identify the key trends that will drive growth in the coming years.

What is the current market landscape and what is changing?
The UK's population is aging and becoming increasingly health conscious, which creates an opportunity for more healthy confectionery product lines. Meanwhile, consumers have continued to turn to Confectionery as an affordable treat, even as the weak economic condition has forced them to cut back spending in other areas.

What are the key drivers behind recent market changes?
UK consumers continue to indulge in fun and enjoyment with Confectionery products. High brand loyalty and premiumization, combined with aggressive marketing strategies, have contributed to sales growth.

What makes this report unique and essential to read?
This report brings together consumer insight and market data to provide a comprehensive brief of the UK Confectionery sector. This allows for the rapid identification of key growth opportunities across three Confectionery categories and their packaging.

Key Features and Benefits

Analysis of consumer behaviour, economic conditions and demography reveals emerging opportunities in the Confectionery sector.

Key growth categories are highlighted by analyzing the market dynamics of three Confectionery categories.

Market shares are provided for the leading brands across Confectionery categories.

An overview of packaging trends in the UK Confectionery sector is provided, including primary packaging material and type, packaging closures, and outer packaging.

Key Market Issues

Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury and Morrisons account for 75.5% of the UK’s Food market, providing a concentrated retail landscape in which Confectionery marketers must operate. Hypermarket & Supermarkets have the largest value share of Confectionery distribution in the UK, followed by Convenience stores and Food & Drink specialists.

Convenience plays a major role in Confectionery sales, owing to the impulse nature of the category. Convenience Stores and Food & Drink Specialists are the second and third most important retail formats for confectionery in value terms.

The UK Confectionery market is skewed towards older consumers: aged 55 and over who constitute over one fourth of the market by volume. Older consumers typically consume confectionery less frequently than younger consumers, but the sheer population of close to 18 million consumers aged 55 and over is driving the market.

Confectionery is a universally-consumed product but slightly skewed towards female consumption in UK. Older consumers aged 55 and over constitute one fourth of the consumption for both men and women. While the better off wealth group account for half of male Confectionery consumption, consumption among women is more evenly spread among wealth groups.

Chocolate and Sugar Confectionery accounted for around 90% of the total number of packs used in the UK Confectionery sector in 2012, driving significant demand for Flexible Packaging Film and Bags/Sachets. Box, Blister Pack, and Trays are the other key pack types for Confectionery products in UK.

Key Highlights

The most important consumption motivation in the UK Confectionery market is Indulgence, followed by Personal Space & Time and Fun & Enjoyment. In addition to these motivators, value for money products are also preferred by consumers as retailers’ private label strategies gain success, not only with “me-too” products but also in premium ranges.

Private Label Confectionery strategy is moving on from a “me-too” product strategy and exploring the premium space with new products, which is driving higher growth rates compared to brands.

Increasing ethical and health concerns will influence UK consumers’ behavior, while manufacturers will explore health claims and functional benefits to improve Confectionery sales.

Confectionery is expected to explore functional benefits like weight and cholesterol management, aid injury recovery and its ability slow down the aging process. For instance Barry Callebaut has an EFSA-approved claim for its ACTICOA® brand that is rich is flavanols, which contribute to normal blood flow.

Country Context

-UK's population is aging and becoming increasingly health conscious
-Food and Grocery growth will be concentrated in national chains
-Convenience plays a major role in Confectionery sales, owing to the impulse nature of the category
-Increasing indoor socializing driving growth of bag and bitesize confectionery products
Consumer Overview
-Confectionery is a universally-consumed product but slightly skewed towards female consumption in UK
-Older Consumers eat Confectionery less often than Young Adults and Kids, but their sheer numbers drive the market.
-Indulgence, fun and enjoyment continue to be the main drivers for Confectionery sales in UK
-Indulgence and chocolate as snack driving demand in Confectionery Sector
-Indulgence and chocolate as snack driving demand in Confectionery Sector
-Fun and enjoyment along with better value for money products impact buying behavior in Confectioner product
Sector Analysis
-Indulgence and innovation driving growth in Confectionery Sector
-Gum Category losing to Chocolate and Sugar Confectionery category, owing to lack of innovation
-UK sweet tooth continue to drive Confectionery
-Premium Chocolate and Sugar free Gum products are driving value growth in the Chocolate and Gum categories
Brands and Private Labels
-Sugar Confectionery has the highest private label penetration within Confectionery Sector
-Private Label are moving ahead from “me-too” product strategy and exploring premium space in Confectionery market
-Key brands by category
Packaging Insight
-Chocolate Category's high volume share is creating demand for Flexible Packaging
-Steady consumption of Chocolates, Gum and Sugar Confectionery expected to drive changes in packaging demand by 2017
Future outlook - key trends in United Kingdom's Confectionery sector
-Increasing Ethical Consumerism
-Experimentation with new flavors
-Confectionery will explore functional benefits
-Health and beauty benefits will drive growing consumption of Dark Chocolate
Data Appendix and Summary Methodology

Companies Mentioned

Nestlé, Mars Food, Kraft, Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury, Morrisons, Co-Coperatives, Waitrose.

Read the full report:

Market Focus: Trends and Developments in the Confectionery Sector in UK

For more information:
Sarah Smith
Research Advisor at
Tel: +44 208 816 85 48

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Sarah Smith
Research Advisor at
+44 208 816 85 48
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