Cheese prices rose strongly in 2018, as the devaluation of the Uzbek som had a pronounced impact in a category that relies heavily on imported products, ingredients and technologies. As a consequence, sales increased significantly in current value terms, while volume growth was considerably more muted as declining consumer purchasing power dampened demand.
The domestic cheese industry in Uzbekistan is expected to improve in terms of the variety and quality of products on offer, as well as packaging and marketing, over the forecast period. The development of local cheese production should benefit from broader government efforts to modernise and diversify agriculture and expand the food processing industry in the country.
As well as contributing to the improvement of the domestic cheese industry, government reforms, including lifting exchange restrictions on the Uzbek som, are set to encourage foreign investment in the market. As a result, foreign brands and products are expected to become increasingly prominent in the cheese category in Uzbekistan during the forecast period.
Bad Bibra overtook Hochland Russland to gain the lead in cheese in 2018. The company benefited from the extensive distribution of its hard cheese brands, Bibertaler Edamer and Bibertaler Gouda, both of which gained share steadily in the last three years of the review period.
Lactalis Vostok ZAO continued to be the most dynamic major player in cheese in Uzbekistan in 2018 as its President brand maintained momentum on the back of rising consumer awareness. The brand is present in the market in categories such as processed cheese and soft cheese.
The expanding range of cheese products available from both domestic and foreign players is set to place a growing onus on brand development, as manufacturers seek to make their brands stand out on increasingly crowded store shelves. Cheese was not characterised by high levels of marketing activity towards the end of the review period, but this situation is likely to change over 2018-2023.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Packaged Food market research database.