Breakfast Foods for the Indian Consumer in 2020
Progressive Grocer|October 2020
THE KEY IS TO ALIGN WITH CONSUMERS’ EVOLVING VIEW OF WHAT MAKES A HEALTHY BREAKFAST, AND THE POSTCOVID-19 NEED FOR EASY MEALS AT HOME…
Rushikesh Aravkar

Pre-COVID-19, three in four Indians ate breakfast at home more than three times a week. However, a third of consumers also ate breakfast while out of home at least twice a week. The out-of-home occasions have now shifted inside of home since lockdown restrictions were put in place. As a result, at-home breakfast consumption has risen further. On pantry-loading sprees, consumers stockpiled packaged non-perishable items such as breakfast cereals and ready-to-eat (RTE) and ready-to-cook (RTC) breakfast foods, along with other snacks.

The sales of frozen food items also spiked during the lockdown. In the first week of August, the Indian government issued Unlock 3.0 guidelines to relaxing lockdown restrictions. However, more than half of the Indian states remain in lockdown as efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 continue.

Mintel research conducted between 1721 July shows 83 percent of Indians* still have high levels of concern about the risk of contracting the virus. This suggests that even though lockdown restrictions are relaxing, consumers will be wary about eating breakfast out of home or while commuting. Convenient, value-for-money breakfast solutions will remain in demand, especially as eating healthily is a higher priority for 79 percent of Indians since the outbreak.

Global Trends Impacting Breakfast Foods In India

Help Consumers Eat Healthily: Mintel Trend #HelpMeHelpMyself highlights how consumers are learning new ways to nudge themselves towards better habits. Forward-looking brands are facilitating and guiding consumers to eat healthily. For brands targeting the breakfast occasion, opportunity lies in innovating around health, plus convenience positioning.

Snackification of Breakfast is an Emerging Trend: Snack brands are increasingly offering better-for-you benefits, and products targeted at the breakfast occasion. Consumers are snacking multiple times a day, disregarding the set mealtimes. Portability, widespread availability and access to snacks works in favour of snackification of breakfast.

Sodium Reduction is on The Agenda: Mintel Trend Supernanny State discusses how governments are stepping up to help consumers make better health decisions through new regulations. FSSAI aims to cut down on salt consumption in the diet. While over a third of Indians associate healthy breakfast with low salt, there’s room to reduce sodium in breakfast cereals.

Increasing Urbanisation Drives Convenience

The World Bank estimates that the Indian urban population has increased from 30 percent in 2008 to 34 percent in 2018. These urban consumers lead a busy lifestyle, hence improving time management and having a better work-life balance are among their top life goals.

As a result, they demand higher convenience from food and drink. In fact, two-third of Indians living in metro cities agree that ready-to-eat packaged breakfast options are suitable for daily use.

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