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Baby Food and Drink - US - May 2014

“More than half of respondents to Mintel’s survey say they give their babies/toddlers aged three and younger adult food. While this is to be expected as babies reach their toddler years, brands can counter the potential for parents to feed their babies adult food by highlighting the specific nutritional formulation of their products and how this formulation provides targeted nutrients that benefit development and that may not always be present in regular foods.”
–    Amy Kraushaar, Category Manager, Food and Drink

This report looks at the following areas:

  • Can brands persuade parents to use baby food over adult food?
  • How can juice brands help decelerate losses?

The US baby food and drink market is expected to increase significantly and steadily between 2013 and 2019, boosted by moderate population growth among children aged three and younger. Also factoring into future growth is a push toward organic products and more brands offering convenient baby food pouches, which bring higher prices and profit margins and are helping drive sales gains, innovation, and new product development. Nearly a third of respondents report wanting to see baby food/drink brands commit further to organic ingredients. However, stronger growth will be prevented by the growing rate of breastfeeding among new mothers, as well as by the slow economic recovery, which likely prevents those parents with limited spending power from buying organic and other costlier baby food and drinks. This report provides analysis of these factors, as well as critical exploration of the following:

  • How sales growth in the number-two baby food segment is outpacing that of the number-one segment baby formula
  • How three top companies maintain their competitive dominance in the MULO market

Online parenting support programs provided by top brands and how they figure into marketing strategies This report also features analysis of Mintel’s exclusive consumer research, with emphasis on product usage, brands used, attitudes and preferences toward baby formula and baby food, and what consumers would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide.

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Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
        • Data sources
          • Sales data
            • Consumer survey data
              • Abbreviations and terms
                • Abbreviations
                • Executive Summary

                  • Overview
                    • Healthy growth predicted
                      • Figure 1: Total US retail sales and fan chart forecast of baby food and drink, at current prices, 2008-18
                    • Sales driven by increasing number of babies/toddlers, rise of organic products
                      • Slow economy and rise in breastfeeding prevent greater gains
                        • Key players
                          • The consumer
                            • Respondents are most apt to feed their kids store-bought, but homemade also popular
                              • Figure 2: Foods parents feed their children aged 2 or younger, January 2014
                            • Parents more apt to give their kids water, cow’s milk than baby/toddler juice or formula
                              • Figure 3: Drinks parents give to their children aged 2and younger, January 2014
                            • More than half of respondents report loyalty to one brand of formula
                                • Figure 4: Behaviors and preferences toward baby/toddler formula, January 2014
                              • More than four in 10 want brands to provide more online (website/social media) deals
                                • Figure 5: What parents would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide, January 2014
                              • What we think
                              • Issues and Insights

                                  • Can brands persuade parents to use baby food over adult food?
                                    • Insight: Highlighting the nutrients in baby foods
                                      • How can juice brands help decelerate losses?
                                        • Insight: Reducing sugar, not diluting; adding vitamins and minerals
                                        • Trend Applications

                                            • Trend: Let’s Make A Deal
                                              • Trend: Extend My Brand
                                                • Trend: Prove It
                                                • Market Size and Forecast

                                                  • Key points
                                                    • Slow economic rebound limits sales growth potential
                                                      • Sales and forecast of baby food and drink
                                                        • Figure 6: Total US retail sales and forecast of baby food and drink, at current prices, 2008-18
                                                        • Figure 7: Total US retail sales and forecast of baby food and drink, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2008-18
                                                      • Fan chart forecast
                                                          • Figure 8: Total US retail sales and fan chart forecast of baby food and drink, at current prices, 2008-18
                                                      • Market Drivers

                                                        • Key points
                                                          • Slow economic recovery prevents greater growth
                                                            • Figure 9: US unemployment rate, by month, 2002-14
                                                            • Figure 10: Attitudes toward baby food and drink, January 2014
                                                          • Number of children aged three and younger expected to increase 2013-19
                                                            • Figure 11: Household usage of liquid/powdered baby formula, 2007-13
                                                            • Figure 12: Population projections for children aged three and younger, 2013-19
                                                          • Blacks report most use of liquid/powdered formula and baby foods, cereals, juices
                                                            • Figure 13: Household usage of liquid/powdered baby formula, by race/Hispanic origin, November 2012-December 2013
                                                            • Figure 14: Household use of baby foods, baby cereals, or baby juices, by race/Hispanic origin, November 2012-December 2013
                                                          • Organic brands will drive future sales
                                                            • Figure 15: What parents would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide, by gender, January 2014
                                                        • Competitive Context

                                                          • Rate of breastfeeding increases
                                                            • Homemade baby food/drink competes directly with store-bought brands
                                                              • Figure 16: Foods parents feed their children aged 2 or younger, January 2014
                                                            • Nearly half of parents give their babies adult food
                                                              • Product recalls may scare away some parents
                                                              • Segment Performance

                                                                • Key points
                                                                  • Baby formula holds 70% share, baby food/snacks segment grows faster
                                                                    • Sales of baby food and drink, by segment
                                                                      • Figure 17: Total US retail sales of baby food and drink, segmented by type, 2011 and 2013
                                                                  • Segment Performance – Baby Formula

                                                                    • Key points
                                                                      • Baby formula sales impacted by breastfeeding trends, price objections
                                                                        • Sales and forecast of baby formula
                                                                          • Figure 18: Total US retail sales and forecast of baby formula, at current prices, 2008-18
                                                                      • Segment Performance – Baby Food and Snacks

                                                                        • Key points
                                                                          • Moderate growth predicted for baby food/snacks
                                                                            • Sales and forecast of baby food and snacks
                                                                              • Figure 19: Total US retail sales and forecast of baby food and snacks, at current prices, 2008-18
                                                                          • Segment Performance – Baby Electrolytes

                                                                            • Key points
                                                                              • Moderate growth expected in 2013-19, but small share overall
                                                                                • Sales and forecast of baby electrolytes
                                                                                  • Figure 20: Total US retail sales and forecast of baby electrolytes, at current prices, 2008-18
                                                                              • Segment Performance – Baby Juice

                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                  • Baby juice is drying up
                                                                                    • Sales and forecast of baby juice
                                                                                      • Figure 21: Total US retail sales and forecast of baby juice, at current prices, 2008-18
                                                                                  • Retail Channels

                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                      • Supermarkets sales flat; drug stores and other channels grow substantially
                                                                                        • Sales of baby food and drink, by channel
                                                                                          • Figure 22: Total US retail sales of baby food and drink, by channel, 2011 and 2013
                                                                                          • Figure 23: US supermarket sales of baby food and drink, 2008-13
                                                                                          • Figure 24: US drug store sales of baby food and drink, 2008-13
                                                                                          • Figure 25: US other channel sales of baby food and drink, 2008-13
                                                                                      • Leading Companies

                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                          • Nestlé S.A. leads market, registers only sales gain
                                                                                            • Private label grows 9.3%
                                                                                              • Manufacturer sales of baby food and drink
                                                                                                • Figure 26: Manufacturer sales of baby food and drink, 2013 and 2014
                                                                                              • Brand loyalty runs high for Nestlé among baby food/snack buyers
                                                                                                • Figure 27: Key purchase measures for the top baby food/snack brands, by household penetration, 52 weeks ending Dec. 29, 2013 (current) and Dec. 30, 2012 (year ago)
                                                                                            • Brand Share – Baby Formula

                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                • Abbott leads but drops 3.6%
                                                                                                  • Mead Johnson drops 1.4% but finds a good formula with Nutramigen
                                                                                                    • Nestlé gains 16.7% with Gerber Good Start Soothe
                                                                                                      • Manufacturer sales of baby formula
                                                                                                        • Figure 28: Manufacturer sales of baby formula, 2013 and 2014
                                                                                                    • Brand Share – Baby Food

                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                        • Nestlé’s Gerber tops segment, drops slightly
                                                                                                          • Milnot and The Hain Celestials Group comprise much smaller share
                                                                                                            • Manufacturer sales of baby food
                                                                                                              • Figure 29: Manufacturer sales of baby food, 2013 and 2014
                                                                                                          • Brand Share – Baby Electrolytes

                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                              • Abbott experiences little competition for electrolyte sales
                                                                                                                • Manufacturer sales of baby electrolytes
                                                                                                                  • Figure 30: Manufacturer sales of baby electrolytes, 2012 and 2013
                                                                                                              • Brand Share – Baby Juice

                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                  • Nestlé has no name brand or private label competition; segment in decline
                                                                                                                    • Manufacturer sales of baby juice
                                                                                                                      • Figure 31: Manufacturer sales of baby juice, 2012 and 2013
                                                                                                                  • Innovations and Innovators

                                                                                                                    • Organic claims highest among all claims in 2013
                                                                                                                      • Figure 32: Top 9 product claims, baby food and formula, by percent of total claims, 2009-13
                                                                                                                    • Organic baby foods ease parents’ minds about food safety
                                                                                                                      • On-the-go products make feeding easier for parents
                                                                                                                        • Ethnic-inspired and internationally flavored baby foods offer more variety
                                                                                                                          • Hypoallergenic brands help prevent reactions while still providing nutrients
                                                                                                                          • Marketing Strategies

                                                                                                                            • Overview of the brand landscape
                                                                                                                              • Theme: A partner in prenatal and newborn/toddler care
                                                                                                                                • Brand example: Gerber
                                                                                                                                  • Gerber TV presence
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 33: Gerber television ad, 2014
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 34: Gerber Graduates Lil’ Entrees television ad, 2014
                                                                                                                                  • Brand example: Similac
                                                                                                                                    • Brand example: Enfamil
                                                                                                                                      • Enfamil TV presence
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 35: Enfamil Newborn television ad, 2014
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 36: Enfagrow Toddler Next Step television ad, 2014
                                                                                                                                    • Social Media

                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                        • Market overview
                                                                                                                                          • Key social media metrics
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 37: Key social media metrics, April 2014
                                                                                                                                          • Brand usage and awareness
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 38: Brand usage and awareness for select baby food and drink brands, April 2014
                                                                                                                                          • Interaction with baby food and drink brands
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 39: Interactions with select baby food and drink brands, April 2014
                                                                                                                                          • Leading online campaigns
                                                                                                                                            • Baby photos
                                                                                                                                              • Parenting advice
                                                                                                                                                • What we think
                                                                                                                                                  • Online conversations
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 40: Online conversations around selected baby food and drink brands, by month, April 1, 2013-March 31, 2014
                                                                                                                                                  • Where are people talking about baby food and drink brands?
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 41: Online conversations around selected baby food and drink brands, by page type, April 1, 2013-March 31, 2014
                                                                                                                                                  • What are people talking about?
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 42: Topics of conversations around selected baby food and drink brands, by month, April 1, 2013-March 31, 2014
                                                                                                                                                • Baby Food/drinks Used in the Household

                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                    • Nearly six in 10 report household use of baby formula
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 43: Household use of liquid/powdered baby formula, by age, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                                                                                                    • Nearly two thirds use baby foods, cereals, juices in the household
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 44: Household use of baby foods, baby cereals, or baby juices, by age, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                                                                                                  • Foods Parents Feed Their Children Aged 2 or Younger

                                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                                      • More than half use a range of store-bought baby foods
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 45: Foods parents feed their children aged 2 or younger, by gender, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Parents who give their children breast milk also likely to feed them homemade pureed fruit/vegetables
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 46: Foods parents feed their children aged 2 or younger—homemade, by drinks parents give to their children aged 2 and younger, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Parents who give their kids juice and/or nutritional shakes also apt to feed them store-bought snacks, yogurt, and treats
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 47: Foods parents feed their children aged 2 or younger—store-bought, by drinks parents give to their children aged 3 and younger, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                    • Drinks Parents Give to Their Children Aged Two and Younger

                                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                                        • Parents most apt to give water to their babies aged two and younger
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 48: Drinks parents give to their children aged 2 and younger, and 1 and younger, by gender, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                        • Brands Used

                                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                                            • Most use Similac formula in the household
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 49: Brands of liquid/powdered baby formula products used in the last 12 months, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                                                                                                            • Gerber top baby food/cereal/juice choice for parents
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 50: Brands of baby foods, baby cereal, or baby juices used in the household, November 2012-December 2013
                                                                                                                                                          • Behaviors and Preferences toward Baby/toddler Formula

                                                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                                                              • More than half stick to the same formula brand all the time
                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 51: Behaviors and preferences toward baby/toddler formula, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                • $50K+ most likely to buy formula with added nutrients such as DHA
                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 52: Behaviors and preferences toward baby/toddler formula, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                              • Behaviors and Preferences toward Baby/toddler Food

                                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                  • Nearly half feed their children some kind of adult food
                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 53: Behaviors and preferences toward baby/toddler food, by gender, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                  • What Parents Would Like to See Baby/toddler Food and Drink Companies Provide

                                                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                      • Most want to see online deals for baby/toddler food/drink
                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 54: What parents would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide, by gender, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                      • Opinions About Baby Food/drink

                                                                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                          • A majority feel private label baby food/drink is as good as name brands
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 55: Opinions about baby food and drink, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                          • Appendix – Other Useful Consumer Tables

                                                                                                                                                                            • Food parents feed their children aged two or younger
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 56: Foods parents feed their children aged 2 or younger, by age, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 57: Foods parents feed their children aged 2 or younger, by household income, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 58: Foods parents feed their children aged 2 or younger, by marital status, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                            • Drinks parents give their child(ren) aged two or younger, and one and younger
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 59: Drinks parents give to their children aged 2 and younger, by age, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 60: Drinks parents give to their children aged 1 and younger, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 61: Drinks parents give to their children aged 2 and younger, by household income, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 62: Drinks parents give to their children aged 1 and younger, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                            • Behaviors and preferences towards baby/toddler food
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 63: Behaviors and preferences toward baby/toddler food, by household income, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 64: Behaviors and preferences toward baby/toddler food, by race/Hispanic origin, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                            • What parents would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 65: What parents would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide, by race/Hispanic origin, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                            • What parents would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 66: What parents would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide, by household income, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 67: What parents would like to see baby/toddler food and drink companies provide, by race/Hispanic origin, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                            • Opinions about baby food and drink
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 68: Opinions about baby food and drink, by gender, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 69: Opinions about baby food and drink, by age, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 70: Opinions about baby food and drink, by marital status, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                          • Appendix – Social Media

                                                                                                                                                                            • Brand usage or awareness
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 71: Brand usage or awareness, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 72: Enfamil usage or awareness, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 73: Gerber usage or awareness, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 74: Plum Organics usage or awareness, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 75: Earth’s Best usage or awareness, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 76: Ella’s Kitchen usage or awareness, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 77: Happy Baby usage or awareness, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                            • Interactions with brands
                                                                                                                                                                              • 78: Activities done, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 79: Enfamil – activities done – I have looked up/talked about this brand online on social media…, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 80: Enfamil – activities done – I have contacted/interacted with the brand online on social media to…, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 81: Enfamil – activities done – I have researched the brand on social media to…., by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 82: Gerber – activities done – I have looked up/talked about this brand online on social media…, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 83: Gerber – activities done – I have contacted/interacted with the brand online on social media to…, by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 84: Gerber – activities done – I follow/like the brand on social media because…., by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 85: Gerber – activities done – I have researched the brand on social media to…., by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 86: Plum Organics – activities done – I have researched the brand on social media to…., by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 87: Earth’s Best – activities done – I have researched the brand on social media to…., by demographics, January 2014
                                                                                                                                                                            • Key social media metrics
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 88: Key social media metrics—Gerber, April 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 89: Key social media metrics—Enfamil, April 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 90: Key social media metrics—Plum Organics, April 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 91: Key social media metrics—Happy Baby, April 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 92: Key social media metrics—Earth’s Best, April 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 93: Key social media metrics—Ella’s Kitchen, April 2014
                                                                                                                                                                            • Online conversations
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 94: Online conversations around selected baby food and drink brands, by month, April 1, 2013-March 31, 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 95: Online conversations around selected baby food and drink brands, by page type, April 1, 2013-March 31, 2014
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 96: Topics of conversations around selected baby food and drink brands, by month, April 1, 2013-March 31, 2014
                                                                                                                                                                          • Appendix – Information Resources Inc. Builders Panel Data Definitions

                                                                                                                                                                              • Information Resources Inc. Consumer Network Metrics
                                                                                                                                                                              • Appendix – Trade Associations

                                                                                                                                                                                Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                • Abbott Laboratories
                                                                                                                                                                                • Costco Wholesale Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                • Gerber Products Company
                                                                                                                                                                                • Mead Johnson & Company
                                                                                                                                                                                • Milnot Holding Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                • Nestlé USA
                                                                                                                                                                                • Walmart Stores (USA)

                                                                                                                                                                                Baby Food and Drink - US - May 2014

                                                                                                                                                                                £3,174.67 (Excl.Tax)