The energy bars market continues to show rising level of growth followed by cereal bars. Australian demand for foreign brands is growing, though sugar product is declining. Vegan and healthy products are very much in spotlight including natural food product. Australian population are increasingly become more health conscious, which is expected to drive the growth in segment such as active nutrition, natural beauty and healthy snacks.
Healthy Snacks Demand
It is known that most of the Australian population love to snack and their favourite products are chocolates, biscuits, cookies, nuts, seeds, crispbread and crackers. Now consumer switching from sugar filled snacks to more specific health attributes. Snack food such as energy bars contain no artificial flavour or colours. The consumer preference is of snack that is made from fruits, vegetables, natural and organic. Sales of these products with organic, natural and healthy characteristics have grown to 28% from 24%, respectively, 2016 and 2015.
Rising Trend of Sport Nutrition
Australian sport nutrition market, which also includes energy bars market grew around 15% in 2016 in comparison of last year. Aussies are now choosing fitness and healthy diet over fast food. The sport nutrition product has begun to see smooth status in terms of offering to general customer. Evolution in terms of ingredients and quality sports and energy bars manufactures are now targeting athletes and gym enthusiast.
The high demand energy bars are aided by the trend for protein requirement for sport athletes. Consumer shift from scientifically backed powers to more natural and organic energy bars is also boosting the sales of energy bar in the country. New energy bars in the market has evolved towards more natural offering using protein rich ingredients like seed, nuts and other energy ingredients, which is more approachable and appealing to wider audience.
Figure 1: Australia GDP Per-Capita, PPP, 2012-2016 (USD)
Source: World Bank
Rising Health Consciousness
Increasing health awareness about numerous nutritional benefits associated with energy bars among youth population in the Australia is aiding the market for these sport nutritional products in the country. Moreover, growing consumption of fibre bars, whole grain bars and protein bars in the country is propelling the demand for energy bars in Australia.
Growing purchasing power of consumers is another major factor boosting the demand for energy bars in the Australia. With growing concerns regarding the nutritional value of food products. among consumers, the popularity of organic energy food bars is increasing, as they are considered to be safe and more nutritious in comparison to conventional food & beverages.
Figure 2: Development of Organic Agriculture in Australia, 2011-2014 (Hectors)
Source: FIBL-IFOAM Survey 2016
This market continuously experiences competition from the new entrants. Number of companies that market and distribute organic and natural in larger volume are turning towards energy and sports nutrition such as energy bar market due to high potential, which can create high competition scenario in the market.
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Growing Prevalence of Private Labels
Easy availability of private label brands is expected to be a major challenge for manufacturers operating in the country’s energy bar market. This is creating a major hurdle in gaining the trust of consumers in the country, and the government is taking necessary actions to control private label products by bringing clarity in regulatory guidelines and stringent policies for selling energy bars in domestic and international markets.
Aggressive Marketing and Promotional Strategies
In order to ensure industry growth, key market players are continuously taking initiatives to educate the consumers and mass audience about the benefits of energy bars. Though almost half of the world’s entire population is getting its daily required calorie intake, they still lack all the appropriate nutrients required by the human body.
With increasing sophistication among energy bars and growing demand for healthier diet, the demand for products with health benefits has been skyrocketing in the country. Attractive packaging is an important tool for creating brand image. Imported products are considered to be of higher quality as consumers generally associate quality with good packaging.