Perceived as the most sophisticated type of healthy products in the country, free from packaged food consolidated as the fastest growing category in 2020. With new product launches, the category has been growing not only through greater penetration among consumers with any kind of intolerance, but also through those looking for a more diverse nutrition base.
The fastest growing subcategory in free from packaged food in Brazil was free from meat in 2020. Although not considered as essential for most Brazilians, the buzz around the subcategory encouraged consumers less affected by the economic crisis to try it, when cooking at home.
While in other healthy packaged food categories, such as better for you (BFY), for example, the number of new product launches was reduced, but the scenario was the opposite for free from products. Besides the major launches of BRF in the free from meat subcategory, existing players such as Fazenda Futuro (launched “chicken” meat), Wickbold (with free from gluten and lactose panettones) and Nestlé Brasil (with free from lactose seasonal chocolate for Easter and free from lactose condensed milk) also played a dynamic role in the country.
Perceived as the most expensive claim among health and wellness categories, free from packaged food in Brazil still struggles to increase penetration at a faster rate due to prohibitive unit prices. For the vast majority of Brazilians, unit prices that are usually 50% more expensive than those of regular versions are the main barrier to further growth.
Over the last decade, Brazilians have become more conscious about their bodies and nutrition patterns - including identifying food intolerances that they did not imagine having. According to IBGE (Brazilian National Statistics Institute), in 2017 around 40% of the population was aware of having some kind of lactose intolerance.
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This report originates from Passport, our Food Intolerance research and analysis database.
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