Preference for Darker Flavour to Be Dominating Trend in Global Chocolate Market
Chocolate has been an integral part of ancient recipes, percolating as a money-making ingredient for the modern food and beverage giants. A product derived from cacao pods, chocolate is an exceptionally popular flavour globally. While debates about the palatal brilliance of chocolate made across countries by varied manufacturers continue, the undeniable liking for chocolate for its flavour and texture remains its undercurrent for growth. In recent years, a growing preference has been noted for dark chocolates. Well known to have a plethora of health benefits, dark chocolate has been winning attention amongst young and adult consumers.
According to Cleveland Clinic, dark chocolate is rich in flavanols, which is known for lowering blood pressure by producing nitric oxide that relaxes blood vessels and betters blood flow. It also contains a good amount of zinc, copper, and phosphorus. As a plant-derived ingredient dark chocolate uses lesser milk solids to retain the bitter mouthfeel. This has popularized dark chocolate amongst those trying to reduce animal-derived product intake.
Visible proof of tilt towards luxury chocolate can be felt with the launch of varied chocolate brands in the retail space. For instance, SMOOR, an Indian-origin luxury chocolate brand focuses on the incorporation of immunity-boosting ingredients such as turmeric, tulsi, pumpkin seeds, giloy, amla, and ashwagandha bring in an element of differentiation. The use of indigenous flavours to make the chocolates true to their Indian flavour is expected to carve a niche for the brand.
Changing Reputation of Chocolate Makes it an Object of Desire and a Status Symbol
An incredible amount of investment in packaging chocolates in designer ways has been critical in building luxury brands. Popular luxury brands such as Godiva, Hotel Chocolat, Prestat, Lindt & Sprugli, Guylian, Artisan du Chocolat, Montezuma, Bettys, and Maison Pierre Marcolini have continuously improved their strategy toward improving production and packaging to lure in consumers. From extravagant, gilded packaging to minimalistic designs chocolate market is witnessing a paradigm shift in creating an aspirational value. Festive packaging for Diwali, Christmas, New Year, and other season’s greetings have given manufacturers a wider platform to create brilliant packaging designs with illustrations, painterly strokes, and modern fonts.
For instance, The Mast Chocolate collaborated with The Met in 2020 to share works of art to commemorate its 150 years. The company intended to raise funds to donate $60 out of the $100 selling price to the Metropolitan Museum of Art with every purchase. Donning works of art from Van Gogh to Katsushika Hokusai, the chocolatier has set a standard for minimalistic design that has an aspirational value.
Chocolate Market Finds its Biggest Consumer in Confectionery Industry
The explosion of the confectionary industry with a growing number of home bakers has greatly impacted the chocolate market. From cakes, bakes, bars, toffees, candies, and bread, the demand for chocolate has soared exponentially. Harsh COVID-19 lockdowns brought in a wave of interest in baking at home. This spiked cocoa powder, drinking chocolate, and chocolate bar sales. Before the pandemic, café culture has been significantly responsible for chocolate consumption. With menus that use chocolate as a hot-selling ingredient, the demand for the same rose considerably. From coffees to croissant, chocolate has become an integral part of menus in all forms of restaurants and cafés. The confectionary chocolate market finds immense potential in snacking habits and gifting protocols.
Vending machines at hospitals and offices have also been essential to the sale of confectionary chocolate products. As offices resume, Fairfield Market Research assesses the market to do well as coffee vending machines that also serve hot chocolate will be used in full swing.
Favouritism Towards Milk Chocolate Drives Segment Growth
The global chocolate market includes dark, milk, and white chocolate. Out of these, the demand for milk chocolate is expected to exceedingly surpass any other. The sheer volume of milk chocolate consumed and produced is expected to keep the segment in the lead. Its straightforwardness in taste and texture has made it an ideal ingredient for making a wide range of products such as wafers, cubes, bars, chips, cookies, and other confectionery products. Preference for milk chocolate for making flavoured beverages has given the segment a leg up. While dark chocolate wears a mask of luxury enjoyed by the adult demographic, milk chocolate has always enjoyed a wider appeal, making it accessible to consumers across all age and income groups.
Belgium and Swiss Chocolates Give Europe an Edge Over Others
Traditionally, western countries have been chocolate consumers and connoisseurs. From gourmet chocolates to mass produce, North America and Europe have been historically known to bring together art and ingredient to create a hot selling item. Smoother, richer, and accentuating tastes have given European chocolate fame and a lucrative spot in the market. Belgian and Swiss chocolates draw tremendous attention across the world for their reputation. Made to create a silky, exotic, and rich mouthfeel, the European chocolates have become the gold standard for many chocolatiers across the globe.
North America on the other hand has played the field with mass-produced chocolates. U.S.-based companies such as THE HERSHEY COMPANY and Mars have excellent recall value for chocolate across the globe. In the coming years, companies are expected to capitalize on growing demand for gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, soy-free, and GMO-free labels to lure in consumers.
Meanwhile, Asia Pacific is touted as the unmissable market for chocolate by Fairfield Market Research. With local and international chocolate brands flooding retail and e-commerce spaces, the chocolate market has a huge scope in the emerging economies of India, China, and Japan.
Global Chocolate Market: Competitive Landscape
Some of the key players operating in the global chocolate market are Barry Callebaut, Lindt & Sprüngli AG, Mondelez International, Nestle, The Hershey Company, Ferrero Group, Mars, Incorporated, The Australian Carob Co., Meiji Holdings Co., Ltd., Arcor, Cargill, Incorporated, and Moonstruck Chocolate.
Companies are expected to add new flavours, launch limited edition bars, and create exclusive season contracts with designers to set themselves apart. For instance, Hershey's brand launched a limited edition of its iconic bar that highlights “SHE” letters of its eponymous bar. The bars were launched in February 2022 as a part of Women's History Month celebrations. Marketing strategies that spell inclusivity and season’s celebrations with attractive packaging are expected to be key differentiators for chocolatiers during the forecast period.
Global Chocolate Market is Segmented as Below:
Key Elements Included In The Study: Global Chocolate Market
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