Despite the rate of pregnancy termination having fallen, Italy continues to record a decline in the birth rate, with mothers having their first child at a later stage in their lives than in the past. As a result, there is also more need for medical assistance to become pregnant, and to ensure pregnancies go smoothly.
For all packaged food, consumers tend to prefer products made locally by Italian manufacturers, as they trust the controls to be stricter than for products made in other countries. Whenever possible, consumers go even further, and purchase organic products, especially in baby food, as they hold extra quality certifications and are made without chemicals.
The low birth rate in Italy has led to the concentration of brands, which are competing strongly to gain parents’ trust and attract purchases. Once a relationship has been built, brands work at maintaining it throughout childhood, by offering products for later life stages, beyond the initial 12 months.
Plasmon is one of the most recognised brands in baby food in Italy, and some products, such as its sweet biscuits, are also appreciated by adults. Having fully understood the importance of constantly communicating with parents, the brand implemented a massive social activity that led to it being awarded top communication campaign by Facebook in 2018.
Considering the high incidence of childhood obesity in Italy (amongst the highest in Europe), Mellin continues to focus on prolonging the period of baby food nutrition, to give children a more balanced diet for longer. Its latest new product developments included two references in milk formula, namely a growing-up milk formula with added vitamin D and calcium (2+ years), as well as a growing-up milk formula with a mix of prebiotic fibre for intestinal balance (12-36 months).
As Italian consumers increasingly appreciate organic products, Alce Nero has been progressively increasing its shares across packaged food, including in baby food. Considering that parents are very sensitive about quality, Alce Nero has managed to convey a message of trust, given that all its products are made by company shareholders and are thoroughly scrutinised to guarantee they are made according to the company’s rules.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Packaged Food market research database.