Fast Market Research recommends "Confectionery Packaging in Japan" from Euromonitor International, now available
Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 08/28/2014 -- Japan is facing an ageing population, combined with a declining birth rate. Over the review period, the number of Japanese people aged 65 and over increased by a CAGR of 2%. At the same time, the birth rate declined from 8.5 per 1,000 population in 2007 to 8.0 in 2012. This demographic shift indicates the decline of the consumer group of chocolate confectionery, which continued to contract gradually over the review period. Furthermore, summers are becoming longer in Japan. Summer is the season in which chocolate confectionery sees the worst sales. The combined double effect of demographic shifts and changes in the weather is leading to the continuous contraction of chocolate confectionery, which is expected to see a negligible decline in current value terms in 2013.
Meiji is expected to remain the leading company in chocolate confectionery in Japan in 2013, with a 19% value share. The company's leading position is expected to be maintained due to its wide portfolio in chocolate confectionery, as well as its continuous marketing efforts. During 2013 the company put effort into generating reasons for consumers to buy chocolate confectionery other than discounted prices. In particular, capitalising on the growing interest in high-quality products amongst adults, the company launched several products targeted towards adults, exemplified by Kyo Maccha Chocolate, flavoured with green tea from Kyoto.
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It is expected that the ageing population and declining birth rate will accelerate over the forecast period. The number of Japanese people aged 65 and over is expected to grow by a faster CAGR of 3% over the forecast period, and the birth rate is expected to decline to 7.1 per 1,000 population by 2017. These further demographic shifts will lead to the decline of the main consumer group of chocolate confectionery, which is therefore expected to contract by 1% in constant value terms over the forecast period.
Gum in Japan is expected to continue to decline in 2013, falling by 4% in current value terms. Japanese consumers in their 20s, previously the major consumers of gum, are now less inclined to chew gum. Since gum is often consumed during leisure pursuits and whilst driving, the lower penetration of cars amongst the younger generation in Japan and the recent steep increase in the price of petrol led to a marked decline in the use of cars, limiting the consumption occasions for gum amongst Japan's motorists. Furthermore, the strong competition from other sugar confectionery categories, such as mints and pastilles, gums, jellies and chews, also contributed to the contraction of gum.
Lotte is expected to maintain its dominant lead gum in Japan in 2013. In order to capitalise on the increasing awareness of FOSHU (Foods for Specified Health Uses) products amongst consumers, triggered by the growing presence of FOSHU beverages, in 2013 the company appealed by stating that its Xylitol brand is the only FOSHU product amongst all the brands based on xylitol in the market. In collaboration with other food and beverage manufacturers, the company ran FOSHU Fair on 9 October, which is a day for FOSHU. In addition, the company launched a new product under the Xylitol brand in 2013, with the aim of expanding consumer profiles. Xylitol targeted towards children was launched, as well as a product which does not stick to older consumers' false teeth.
Gum is expected to see a negative constant value CAGR of 3% over the forecast period, mainly due to Japan's declining population, and further competition from other categories, such as mints and pastilles, gums, jellies and chews. In addition, the anticipated decline in the use of cars amongst the Japanese population is also expected to have a negative impact on sales of gum, reducing the consumption occasions.
Sugar confectionery registered a positive performance in 2011, mainly due to special demand after the earthquake, and due to the high pollen count. After the earthquake, consumers purchased boiled sweets to stock as emergency foods, as sugar is believed to produce energy with only small amounts. Also, in spring 2011 the amount of pollen was twice to six times as high as in the previous year, and more Japanese consumers suffered from pollen allergies, leading them to purchase more medicated confectionery. Following 2011, which was favourable to sales, sugar confectionery suffered from a backlash not only in 2012, but this is also expected to continue in 2013. There was no post-earthquake demand, of course, but also the pollen count was low, which led to the continuous contraction of the category. Sugar confectionery is expected to decline by 1% in current value terms in 2013.
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