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SE Asia: Increasing demand for artisanal and healthy products

The Southeast Asia bakery products market was valued at USD 13,470.18 million in 2020 and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 7.67% from 2021 to 2026, according to research by

Southeast Asian consumers are increasingly adopting Western-style diets containing wheat and high protein content, shows the report called “Southeast Asia Bakery Products Market – Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 – 2026)”. Thai consumers, particularly, are seeking healthier diets. This has pushed companies to produce gluten-free baked goods and natural bakery products. In 2021, Mondelez launched its gluten-free Oreo chocolate sandwich cookies, for example. The gluten-free option is available for its traditional and Double Stuff Oreo variants. Snack products claiming to contain natural and organic ingredients have witnessed increased demand in Malaysia and Singapore, and this concept has been evolving across other markets as well.

The increased consumer demand for nutritious products and the rising clean-label claims on products have accelerated market growth in this region. Product launches with various label claims, such as no artificial additives, no preservatives, non-GMO, and reduced sugar, are becoming increasingly popular. Consumers perceive their food as an opportunity to experience various tastes and textures.

They are more inclined to products that position themselves as natural and healthy. Many market players are responding to this trend by incorporating ‘superfood’ seeds into their offerings, such as chia seeds, rich in proteins and calcium. Japanese artisanal bread is popular among Southeast Asians. Many key players are taking advantage of this trend. These multi-portion buns are a part of the offerings from Yamazaki Baking, which began selling Japanese-style bread in Indonesia in 2018 through a joint venture with Mitsubishi Corp. and the operator of the local convenience store chain, Alfamart. The bakery industry has recently witnessed the establishment of a combination of bakeries, restaurants, cafes, and catering services. These bakery cafes or cake-houses offer various products in different flavors.

Indonesia’s flourishing bakery market

The demand for bakery products in Indonesia is continuously increasing because people recognize it as a meal rather than a snack. This increased consumption is also augmented by the consumers’ changing lifestyles, income improvement, urbanization, and westernization. In 2019, the consumption of bread and cakes reached 9.5kg/year per capita, surging by around 60% between 2016 and 2018. Rice is a staple food in the country, but some people get bored with eating rice and other local dishes all the time. They shifted to bakery products instead, the report highlights, which is another factor driving the market’s growth. Consumers in the country have different preferences for bakery products as per their income.

For instance, high-end consumers prefer western bread and pastries, the upper-middle-income group prefers Japanese and Asian bread, and the lower-middle group prefers local sweetbreads and white bread. As per the data published in German-Indonesian Chamber of Industry and Commerce reports, more than 640 registered bakery product companies are in the country. In addition, only a few prominent market players are operating in the Indonesian bakery products market, including Pt. Nippon Indosari Corpindo Tbk, Khong Guan Biscuit Factory (S) Pte Ltd, and Nissin Food Holdings Co. Ltd. The leading companies lack variety in the products offered, as they all have a similar kind of product portfolio.