Baby Food United Kingdom examines the trends in the baby food market for 2006-2012, with forecasts to 2018. It examines how live birth rates, breastfeeding trends, the economic crisis, new product and packaging developments, changing attitudes and safety concerns have affected the market for baby milks, cereals, meals, drinks and finger foods.
Sales in value terms have continued to increase, boosted by the rising number of births, growing concern among parents with health and quality, as well as convenience, and active marketing by manufacturers. However, 2012 saw progress falter slightly for the first time, with a fall of 2.6% in sales in terms of volume.
The promotion of breastfeeding has led to a rise in initiation rates, but the proportion continuing to breastfeed remains relatively low and manufacturers have succeeded in selling more formula for older babies, as well as more premium products. The drive towards more wholesome food has led to the expansion of the organic sector and the provision of foods marketed as balanced and healthy, as well as the launch of 'homemade' style recipes. Niche suppliers have introduced new products in the wet meals and cereals sectors, as well as chilled fresh baby meals at premium prices. There has also been a broadening of the range of products with international flavours and different presentations of traditional products, notably pouches, as well as the growing availability of products targeted at toddlers.