Retail sales of sauces, dressings and condiments recorded strong growth in Western Europe in 2020, driven by measures to control Coronavirus (COVID-19), such as the forced closure of foodservice establishments and people spending more time at home than usual due to lockdowns/quarantines and remote working/learning. This meant more meals were being prepared and eaten at home, driving retail sales in a number of sauces, dressings and condiments categories during 2020.
Western Europe had been posting positive historic period annual growth rates up to 2020, albeit very modest ones, but the region then recorded a strong sales increase in 2020. While foodservice sales collapsed, with outlets in this channel forced to shut down for extended periods, retail sales not only benefited from this, but also from the fact that people were generally also spending more time in their homes due to lockdowns/quarantines and remote working/learning. This meant many more meals being prepared at home across the region.
Consumers will continue to look for healthier products over the forecast period, with industry players expected to try and meet these demands. Less or zero fat/salt/sugar, fewer or no additives/preservatives/artificial colours and natural ingredients will fit this bill, as will organic and vegan variants of existing products.
There is an increasing focus on product origin in a number of countries in the region. For example, in Italy, product origin is a central issue with many herbs and spices, with declared 100% Italian or regional origins an important selling point. Saarioinen in Finland emphasises the domestic origin of its products, as Finns are known to support the local economy. Mautner Markhof Feinkost in Austria makes its products from mustard seeds grown domestically, and Hofer, also in Austria, markets the fact that the products manufactured for its wide range of popular private label lines (eg Hofer, Gartenkrone, Lomee and Gusto) use local ingredients.
After the strong growth in 2020, the following year will see a slight dip in sales, as society hopefully starts to return to normal on the back of mass vaccination programmes. Positive, if not particularly spectacular, annual growth rates are then expected over the rest of the forecast period.
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