NH packaged food saw strong growth in 2020 with sales benefiting from the measures put in place to control the spread of COVID-19. Despite prices rising for some products due to a hike in VAT from 5% to 15%, which took place in July 2020, demand soared with lockdown measures and the disruption to foodservice creating increased demand for food at home.
Alongside NH sour milk products, other staples of the Saudi diet include NH honey, olive oil, and nuts, seeds and trail mixes. All of these categories benefited from the lockdown, with these products also having a healthy and nutritious image.
Due to the lockdown and social distancing measures consumers took fewer trips to the gym during 2020 forcing them to pay closer attention to their diet. This increased focus on healthy eating benefited NH packaged food, with some consumers looking to reduce their intake of artificial additives and preservatives.
Backed by government campaigns, consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of the food they eat and the ingredients they put into their body, all of which should favour sales of NH packaged food. Similar to the pattern seen in 2020, staples such as NH sour milk products, honey, and olive oil should all see healthy growth.
The high price of some NH packaged food products could remain an obstacle to the development of the category. With COVID-19 expected to put further pressure on the economy many consumers are likely to have to make tougher budgetary decisions, which could include cutting back on NH packaged food.
Almarai continued to lead NH packaged food in 2020, thanks to its flagship NH high fibre bread and pastry brand L'Usine and its dominant Almarai brand of NH sour milk products. The company leads NH packaged food thanks to the high quality and reasonable price points of its offerings.
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