With the long-term trend towards rising health-consciousness among Taiwanese consumers having gained momentum since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, more time spent cooking and eating at home due to increased community transmission of the virus supported an improved performance by free from packaged food in terms of total volume and current value sales growth in 2021. In particular, growth rates were bolstered by strong demand for clean label products, ie those that are made with natural, authentic ingredients and contain fewer or no artificial additives.
While volume sales of standard infant milk formula have been in decline for several years in Taiwan due to falling birth rates, HA milk formula continued to develop positively in this regard in 2021. The category’s buoyant performance reflected the fact that many parents are now inclined to choose HA milk formula even when their babies are not showing symptoms of food allergies, either out of an abundance of caution or because they believe these products will reduce their risk of developing such conditions.
As more people adopt vegetarian, vegan and flexitarian diets for health reasons or over concerns about the environment and animal welfare, interest in free from meat packaged food is increasing in Taiwan. Frequent innovation has also helped to broaden the appeal of such products in recent years.
Free from dairy milk looks set to remain by far the single largest category within free from packaged food in volume and current value sales terms over the forecast period. Having historically been mainly represented by soy milk and rice milk, the category is expected to see increased demand for recently launched oat-based products.
Many vegetarians and vegans in Taiwan are older people who choose not to consume meat and animal products for religious reasons. These consumers generally prefer traditional free from product types such as tofu and derivatives and soy milk, and have been slow to embrace newer meat substitutes and dairy alternatives that have recently found favour with younger people adopting flexitarian diets for reasons related to health, environmental sustainability and animal welfare.
As the flexitarian trend continues to gain momentum in Taiwan, it is expected free from packaged food will witness greater diversification in terms of the assortment of product types on offer over the forecast period. Free from dairy cheese is likely to be a focal point in this regard.
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This category includes free from gluten, free from lactose, free from allergens, free from dairy and free from meat products. This excludes foods which are certified ‘free’ of a specific product when this is based on use of sterilised equipment.See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Food Intolerance research and analysis database.
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