Bread continued to dominate sales of baked goods in 2018. Being a traditional product, fuelled by the fact that Romania is a major producer of wheat, there is a high rate of consumption of bread per capita due to the wide perception of it as a staple part of a cheap meal across the country; however, volume sales of bread declined over the review period, as more products became available as substitutes for bread.
Bread accounts for the majority of sales of baked goods, which is why increased sophistication within the category was mainly the result of the activities of bread manufacturers in order to meet consumer demand for healthier and premium products. The increase in disposable incomes over the period 2016-2018 was an essential part of consumers looking to lead healthier lives and to change their consumption habits.
The small category of dessert mixes posted the highest current value growth in 2018. Growth was supported by coming from a low base and by rapid penetration of high-income households, where a lack of time resulted in consumers looking for quick and convenient desserts.
As bread clearly dominated sales of baked goods in 2018, domestic manufacturers of bread had a clear lead over international players; however, Vel Pitar, owned by the international investment fund Broadhurst Investment Ltd, was the leader of packaged bread in 2018 and over the review period. Its strong position was the result of a larger number of facilities across the country compared to its main competitors within bread, such as the purely domestic players of Boromir Ind and Dobrogea Grup.
Sales of artisanal baked goods far exceed those of packaged products. The level of fragmentation within artisanal baked goods was high in 2018, with the large majority of manufacturers being active at a local level and only a couple of nationwide producers showing a more active presence through modern retailing.
Modern grocery retailers was the main channel in 2018 for sales of packaged products. These outlets benefited from the establishment of their own bakery workshops to sell fresh artisanal baked goods, offering increased sophistication with brown bread, wholegrain, rye, bran and products enriched with seeds.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Packaged Food market research database.