The growth of packaged food in Cameroon remained positive in 2016. This was due to a growing population with rising disposable incomes that generated considerable demand for packaged food. However, the market continued to face challenges related to unit prices that remained unfavourable for a large and low-income consumer base. The economy thrived amidst food security fears as local resources in northern and eastern regions were placed under added strain by the arrival of large numbers of refugees from neighbouring Nigeria and Central African Republic due to the unrest in the Central African Republic and Boko Haram attacks in Nigeria. These parts of the country have long underperformed in packaged food and sales remain weak as compared to the southern part of the country, especially in large cities such as Douala and Yaoundé. However, volume growth continued to be driven by the promotional activities of manufacturers in essential categories.
Standard products perform strongly targeting the middle-income consumer base
During 2016, Cameroon’s packaged food leading players focused on growing sales of standard products prioritising smaller pack sizes. These products appealed mostly to middle-income groups who were financially comfortable enough to trade up from unpackaged to packaged products or who were simply seeking convenience. Hence, the growing middle class became the target for several brands. For example, in some modern channels such as Casino, Super U or Spar, which are positioned to retail higher priced premium products, standard local brands are becoming increasingly present and visible, usually being positioned as value products at reduced prices.
Domestic players need to improve on industrial competitiveness
Domestic players such as NGM International, that now has brands in rice, canned green peas and potato chips, and other companies such as Chococam, Maya & Cie and NT Foods have made some progress venturing into some categories where they were virtually absent over the review period. However, room remains for improving industrial competitiveness in order to successfully operate at international levels. Up until the end of the review period, packaged food had been marked by intense competitive dependence on imported goods, which remains a major challenge. The development of domestic manufacturers has remained crucial to the achievement of strong, sustainable economic growth.
Traditional retail loses share to growing modern retail formats
Open markets and kiosks, along with independent small grocers, remained as the primary distribution channels for packaged food in Cameroon. Nevertheless, the entry of new supermarkets such as Super U and Spar shopping centres is encouraging some consumers to switch to a different shopping attitude. Hence, the traditional retail channels lost some share to these modern channels, which continue to grow in the cities of Douala and Yaoundé.
Positive forecast period sales growth expected
Packaged food in Cameroon is likely to record steady value growth at constant 2016 prices over the forecast period. Whilst consumers are likely to continue to be attracted to both affordability and convenience, price- sensitivity trends will continue to be observed among the lower income consumer base. Therefore, standard specific products with favourable and affordable prices will definitely register higher success rates in retail channels. Health and wellness benefits may also become a key selling point over the forecast period. Retail volume growth should remain steady, growing marginally slower than value growth at constant 2016 prices across all categories over the forecast period.
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The Packaged food in Cameroon market research report includes:
Analysis of key supply-side and demand trends
Detailed segmentation of international and local products
Historic volumes and values, company and brand market shares
Five year forecasts of market trends and market growth
Robust and transparent market research methodology, conducted in-country
Our market research reports answer questions such as:
What is the market size of Packaged food in Cameroon?
What are the major brands in Cameroon?
As economic prospects slowly improve, are consumers starting to eat out more and spending less time cooking at home?
How is private label performing in the wake of retail consolidation and the global economic hangover?
Do consumers want value for money or added value?
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