, Singapore

Asian consumers demanding ‘healthier, safer and more sustainable’ foods: report

QSRs are already responding to these trends.

The New Asian consumer is demanding healthier, safer and more sustainable foods, already impacting QSR offerings across the region.

According to the latest The Asia Food Challenge report by PwC, Rabobank and Temasek, consumers in the region will drive US$2.4 trillion or 55% of the US$4.4 trillion incremental food spend in the next decade. 

An additional US$750 billion in investment, on top of the US$800 billion forecasted in 2019—bringing the total to US$1.55 trillion is now required to “satisfy growing demands for healthier, safer or more sustainable food options,” the collective said.

From spending their growing disposable income on “more expensive, tastier” food, priorities of Asian consumers are said to have evolved towards “value-seeking” and demanding additional attributes “as they become more sophisticated.”

The report encouraged Asia’s food and agricultural industry to tap on the incremental food spend by developing new products and business models in response to the fast-evolving tastes and demands of Asian consumers.

Six consumer trends they note include healthier diets, fresh foods, safe and traceable sources, sustainable consumption, alternative proteins and online purchasing or increasing use of e-commerce.

“Catering to Asia's diversity Preferences and willingness by consumers to pay a premium within these six broad categories diverges widely across markets – such as concepts of “health” and “quality”. Catering to this large, diverse and dynamic market requires an intimate understanding of common regional trends and local nuances,” the group said.

Macroeconomic and demographic trends will contribute almost half of the region’s 7% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) growth in food spend between 2019 and 2030. They added, noting that Asia's “increasingly sophisticated” consumers will be the biggest driver, accounting for 3.7 percentage points.

China’s huge population is expected to see the largest increase in consumer-led food spend,
forking out US$1.2 trillion between 2019 and 2030.

India, meanwhile, will lead the region in growth rates in consumer-driven food spend, posting a 5.3% CAGR expansion over the next decade, representing an increase of US$700 billion.

Southeast Asian markets are also expected to experience a 4.7% CAGR between 2019 and 2030, representing an US$500 billion increase.

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