Vietnam nutrition market to be worth $6b by 2020

Following double-digit growth in the past five years the in-home fast-moving consumer goods nutrition market in Viet Nam reached $4.1 billion last year and is forecast to reach US$6 billion in 2020, offering great prospects for the sector, according to Kantar Worldpanel.


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The in-home fast-moving consumer goods nutrition market in Viet Nam is forecast to reach US$6 billion in 2020.


The in-home FMCG nutrition market includes dairy and products from dairy, soya milk, tonic food drinks, noodles and soups, biscuits and cakes, canned foods, processed foods, and frozen foods.

Speaking at a discussion held by Nestlé Vietnam in HCM City on Thursday, Nguyen Huy Hoang, commercial director of Kantar Worldpanel Vietnam, said the nutrition market has grown at a compounded annual rate of 10 per cent in the last five years compared to 9 per cent for FMCG. The former is forecast to continue growing faster than FMCG in the coming years.

On average a Vietnamese household spends more than 3 per cent of its total monthly income on nutritional packaged foods and beverages, which are brought home to consume.

Rural households are aware of the importance of nutrition and increasing their spending on this in line with higher health consciousness and better education despite lower purchasing power, he said.

This raises some interesting questions from those looking to take a bigger slice of this growing pie about why there is so much potential and how to tap into it, he said.

Balanced nutrition is becoming more and more important to consumers.

Dairy and nutritional products will continue to grow, especially in rural areas where the rate of stunted children is still big. In urban areas, obesity and short-sightedness are common problems for children, he said.

Nutrition manufacturers must understand this to come up with suitable products, he added.

Micronutrient deficient

According to a general nutrition survey by the National Institute of Nutrition in 2015, deficiency of micronutrients like iron, zinc and vitamin A, was rife among pregnant women and children, with the rates being higher in rural areas.

For instance, nearly 70 per cent of children under five suffered from zinc deficiency. Children in mountainous areas had the highest rate of nutrition deficiency of 80.8 per cent. The figures were 71.6 per cent in rural areas and 49.7 per cent in urban areas.

Besides, 21.8 per cent and 13.8 per cent of children under five in rural areas were stunted and underweight, while the rates were 12.1 per cent and 7.1 per cent in urban areas.

In contrast many urban children were obese. This doubled the nutritional burden for Viet Nam, according to experts.

In the National Nutrition Strategy for until 2020, the Government targets improving the nutritional status of mothers and children to reduce the stunting and underweight rates among children under fiver, improve micro-nutrient deficiency, and effectively control obesity.

Le Thi Hoang Yen, communication and marketing support director of Nestlé Vietnam, said the company has promoted labels based on Guideline Daily Amounts (GDAs), which inform consumers about the nutritional composition of a serving of food or beverage in terms of calories, sugars, fats and other nutrients.

It has supported sporting events to address the problem of obesity and physical inactivity and encourage an active lifestyle and regular physical exercise, she added. — VNS

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