The products for this segment released into the market within the last year are fewer than the analysts were expecting, according to the report. They have observed high activity in the bakery industry, which creates many specific products for children; whereas the overall share of innovations the last year is a meager 10% for children ages 5-12.
“We are surprised to find that not more marketers are focusing on this segment, where both health and nutrition fundament is built and where brand loyalty is built,” said Karin Nielsen, CEO of Bio2com. The largest surprise was the low activity in North America, being on a fourth level after Europe, Asia Pacific and South America in product launch activity. The explanation is that many of the large companies such as Kellogg, General Mills, Nestle and Kraft may be busy on reformulating and re-launching current products by taking fat and sugar out, and putting fiber and grains in.
North America has a demand, in relation to all concerns of childhood obesity, and of such high concern that a new bill “The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act” has been established as one of the results of First Lady Michelle Obama’s campaign for healthier foods among all U.S. children. However, the European market is also in demand of more healthy kid’s products, and surprisingly the private label supermarket channels are quite active here. Companies like Wal-Mart, Tesco, Safeway, Aldi and Coop are among the top 20 scorers on new products. But 80% of new products for kids are launched by the regional and national players.
From a nutritional point of view, there are many basic changes to consider. However, there are also many opportunities revealed in the report, as there are still ways for caloric and sugar content modifications, and for example declaring calcium in cheeses for children. Many other areas could be positive ways for getting parents’ attention, as the use of pre- and probiotics have opportunities beyond the traditional applications.