Sanitary protection recorded a marginal retail volume decline in 2018. Indeed, the demographics of Belgium, with an ageing population, means that more consumers are expected to have less need for sanitary protection as greater numbers of Belgian women reach the menopause.
On the other hand, many mature women with slight incontinence issues prefer to use pantyliners initially instead of immediately using adult incontinence protection. While the ageing population in Belgium is a threat for sanitary protection over the forecast period, especially for tampons and towels, which are used by teenagers and young women, an increase in demand for pantyliners is expected to limit overall volume losses in sanitary protection.
It will likely be impossible to increase demand for sanitary protection over the forecast period, except for pantyliners. Thus, manufacturers are trying to find new ways to create value in the category, with a focus on greener and healthier versions of sanitary protection.
Procter & Gamble Benelux is the undisputed leader in sanitary protection due to the success of its Always/Whisper and Tampax brands. The marketing power of the company guarantees its products strong visibility in the media and a wide presence in all channels, with Tampax, for example, present in Aldi and Lidl België.
Private label extended its strong position in sanitary protection in 2018, particularly in pantyliners where value for money is traditionally an important factor. It is interesting to note that private label is slowly embracing the ecological trend for greener sanitary protection.
Convenience and ecology are the two main innovation paths that sanitary protection manufacturers can use to create value. In terms of convenience, individual packs and ease of transport will likely increase the penetration of pantyliners and its daily usage, while greener sanitary protection will increasingly attract environmentally and health-conscious women.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Tissue and Hygiene market research database.