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Eight Trends for Infant Nutrition in China

2019-01-14 09:27 Monday

A research center jointly established by JD and COFCO recently released a white paper, which describes eight consumption and innovation trends in China's infant nutrition market.

The report, entitled the White Paper on China Food Consumption and Product Innovation Trend, gives a detailed description of the development of the infant nutrition market.

Infant Nutrition

1. The Rise of Organic Food

According to the white paper, more and more parents are buying organic food for their children.

On JD's big data platform, organic infant food accounted for only 1.7% of all infant food in 2013-2014, a figure which rose to 3.78% in 2017-2018.

2. The Rise of Probiotic Products

In 2017-2018, infant products with probiotics grew by 250%, when compared with 2015-2016.

Searches for "probiotics" are also on the rise. Probiotic infant foods accounted for 2.85% of all searches in year 2017-2018, while the figure was just 1.14% between 2015 and 2016.

3. More Research and Development Centers

Due to fierce market competition, food manufacturers have begun to place emphasis on product research and development, by establishing R&D centers.

Notably, dairy giants Mengniu, Yili and Feihe have set up their own infant nutrition research and development centers to promote product innovation.

4. Original and Milk Flavors Remain Popular

Although new flavors are emerging in the market, infant food with original and milk flavors are still popular.According to JD, original and milk flavored products accounted for 31.88% and 20.74% respectively, of the infant food market in 2017- 2018.

5. The Power of IP Marketing

The paper also describes how intellectual property (IP) marketing has succeeded in the Chinese market.Marketing methods include the use of cartoon characters to attract children and parents to buy products.

6. Finger Food Innovation

The concept of finger food has led to innovation, and the development of products that help young children learn to eat independently.Due to this, food manufacturers have produced finger foods for young children, which are slender and easier for children to grasp.

7. Maternal Lifestyle Demands

Manufacturers should also pay attention to mothers' lifestyles and needs when they produce infant food.According to the COFCO's survey, 93% of mothers said they hoped to strike a balance between family and career, and 92% noted that they hoped to spend more time with their children.

8. Dad Increasingly Involved in Child-rearing

At present, more men are involved in parenting, including buying food for their children through e-commerce platforms.From 2017 to 2018, 50.85% of the consumers who bought infant formula on JD were men. About a third of buyers of other types of baby food, such as snacks, noodles and baby porridge, were men.

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