In Chile, the baby food sector providing extensive and highly detailed consumption data on the baby food industry. Baby food is any soft and easily consumed food that is made specifically for human babies between four to six months and two years old. This comprises packaged dry and liquid products designed specifically for babies. Some baby foods that may contain nitrates such as beets, banana, green bean, turnip and carrot.
It is segmented in many types such as baby formula, cereals, fruits, vegetables, milk, wet foods and biscuit/snacks & other drinks etc. Baby foods and formulas are created based upon nutritional needs for infant & toddler development. Baby formula is only for those baby or infants who are up to 12 months and baby foods are consumed by those babies who are up to 3 age. This sector is defined by the baby population and living standards in country.
According to study, “The Baby Food Sector in Chile, 2018” some of the major companies that are working in the baby food sector in Chile are Nestle Chile SA, Abbott Laboratories de Chile Ltda, Danone Chile, Aspen Chile SA.
There are mainly three forms of baby food, which are; liquid concentrate, powder and ready-to-feed. The powder is the least expensive form and it is used by mixing with water before feeding the infant. In the case of the ready-to-feed form of baby food, there is no need of addition of any liquid and mother can feed this directly to the baby. Additionally, cereal products are mostly wheat based such as rice and oats. Cereals products are mainly for babies aged from six or seven months old. Some other baby foods are wet savory meals: which are pureed and mashed meals, usually for babies over nine months. In Chile, there are many baby food brands are available, which are; Gain, Pediasure, Similac, Promise PE, S-26, S-26 Lactosa, Hero baby, Nestum, Heinz, Calo crecer, Progress gold and Promil etc.
In Chile, there are many distribution channels of baby food sector such as supermarkets, hypermarkets, small grocery retailers and health & beauty retailers. Additionally, some other distribution channels are discounters, non-store retailing and non-grocery retailers. Some advantages of baby formula are convenience and no maternal restrictions. Some of the disadvantages associated with baby formula not individualized include digestive difficulties and high cost etc. in Chile
The key trends included in baby food sector in Chile, are; increasing awareness on adequate nutrition, growing population of women professionals, food safety concern and rising urbanization. Some major factors that affecting the growth of the baby food sector are home cooking, falling birth rates, increased breastfeeding by government initiatives, safety of foods, population shift to urban areas, increasing number of working women and awareness regarding adequate nutrition etc.
In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of products marketed with a stress on nutrients. As well as many nestle products are promoted as containing probiotics and added iron, zinc, and vitamins. In 2017, in Chile, baby food sector’s retail growth was 5% to reach at CAGR of CLP129.7 billion. It is expected that CAGR will be CLP144.8 billion in 2022. Growing-up milk formula registers the strongest retail growth of 12% and the average unit price increased by 3%. In 2017, Nestle Chile SA was the leader and accounts for 60% of retail value sales. The falling birth rate is set to continue to negatively affect the growth rate of this category over the 2017-2022 periods.
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Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications