Sports Nutrition in Western Europe

November 2021

Sports nutrition was negatively affected by the pandemic in 2020, with sales declining against a backdrop of gym closures and lockdowns. A recovery is expected as vaccination programmes are rolled out in Western Europe, but a return to more dynamic growth is not expected until 2022. All areas of the market will record healthy CAGRs over the forecast period, with the outlook for sports nutrition currently a positive one in Western Europe.

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Key findings

Pandemic negatively impacts sales

All the major countries in the region were recording positive growth prior to the pandemic hitting the region, with particularly dynamic sales increases for some. However, most countries were experiencing declining sales in 2020, as measures to try and contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus, such as lockdowns, retail closures and the shutting down of gyms, badly impacted sports nutrition.

Sports nutrition starts to recover in 2021

Sales have been back on a positive growth trend in 2021, with further annual sales increases on the way over the forecast period. Demand for sports nutrition in Germany is still in its early stages, for example, and therefore still offers plenty of room to grow, as an increasing number of consumers adopt healthy lifestyles, and perceive sports nutrition as increasingly useful to support their efforts.

Target protein-seeking vegans/vegetarians?

In Germany it is common for vegans or vegetarians to supplement their diets with a plant-based protein shake due to the fact that they may have lower protein intake overall. As plant-based diets gain momentum in Germany, plant-based protein shakes could benefit. As the interest in vegan/vegetarian lifestyles continues to increase in Germany, sports nutrition players could expand their portfolios to target this demand.

E-commerce leads regional distribution

E-commerce was already performing strongly prior to the pandemic, but the peculiar circumstances prevailing across the region due to the virus provided further impetus for online sales. E-commerce is also proving to be “sticky” for sports nutrition – once consumers have a positive experience shopping online and become accustomed to its convenience, competitive pricing and the wide range of products on offer, they often persist with it.


Key findings

Regional Overview

Growth in Western Europe is slightly below global levels
Return to positive growth in the forecast period after 2020’s dip in sales
Major drop in Turkish sales
Dynamic protein/energy bars growth in 2016-2021
Protein products continue to dominate sports nutrition sales
Sports nutrition products gradually entering the mainstream
E-commerce now dominates sports nutrition distribution…
…after receiving a further boost to sales in the pandemic

Leading Companies and Brands

Mondelez and Orkla drive consolidation via acquisitions
Bartoni enjoys strong growth over the historic period
The UK is the major revenue generator for the top 10 players
Barebells continues its rise up the rankings

Forecast Projections

Positive growth rates expected over 2021-2026
Competition from non-sports nutrition products with high protein levels?

Country Snapshots

Austria: Market Context
Austria: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Belgium: Market Context
Belgium: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Denmark: Market Context
Denmark: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Finland: Market Context
Finland: Competitive and Retail Landscape
France: Market Context
France: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Germany: Market Context
Germany: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Greece: Market Context
Greece: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Ireland: Market Context
Ireland: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Italy: Market Context
Italy: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Netherlands: Market Context
Netherlands: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Norway: Market Context
Norway: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Portugal: Market Context
Portugal: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Spain: Market Context
Spain: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Sweden: Market Context
Sweden: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Switzerland: Market Context
Switzerland: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Turkey: Market Context
Turkey: Competitive and Retail Landscape
UK: Market Context
UK: Competitive and Retail Landscape


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