Due to long-term social isolation and quarantine measures taken by local authorities in Brazil in 2020, the category managed to benefit from home seclusion and channel shift: with more people working and studying from home, having the main meals made at home contributed to fuel sales of the category. This has been particularly true of NH high fibre bread - as more consumers are having breakfast at home than ever - as well as NH olive oil - also in comparison with the very high price increases of regular vegetable and seed oils during the year.
Being a country with more than half of the population presenting some level of overweight and high levels of sedentary living, encouraging consumers to adopt healthier nutrition is a matter of public safety, especially as some of these conditions might contribute to more severe COVID-19 consequences. In this sense, switching to products that can provide greater satiety and better digestive health has continuously been a priority for many consumers - despite the fact that more affluent Brazilians are more inclined to pick products with more claims such as free from, organic, fortified/functional, among others, instead of NH only.
Wickbold & Nosso Pão Indústrias Alimentícias Ltda, despite being the category leader in the country, accounts for less than 10% of retail value sales in 2020. Such market fragmentation contributes to greater competitiveness and pressure on unit prices, maintaining the category as one of the most affordable among all HW claims available in Brazil.
Artisanal products are expected to continue to dominate the category over the forecast period driven by two major polarised trends: on the one hand, middle- and lower-income consumers tend to prefer these products (especially NH high fibre bread) due to their usually lower unit prices, especially if purchased in bulk, and perceived high quality and freshness; on the other hand, more affluent consumers continue to boost the “back to basics for status” trend, by switching back to artisanal products with a premium positioning. During the COVID-19 pandemic, however, home seclusion has boosted cooking at home occasions - and homemade bread has been one of the most important trends in the country.
While new product launches continue to arrive on a frequent basis, incremental innovation has been perceived in most cases. Focus has been on new flavours and new pack sizes, demonstrating a more conservative approach from manufacturers when looking at long-term strategies.
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