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Plant Protein Drinks - China - January 2014

“Plant protein drinks are perceived as a safer, natural and healthier alternative to mammalian milk, partly reflecting the high prevalence of lactose intolerance in China and also the milk scandal issue of 2008. These products have been able to tap into the trends in the wider beverage market, and have enjoyed compound annual growth rates of around 18.1% since 2008, but are expected to witness slower CAGR growth of 10.4% for the next five years.

The emphasis on health benefits and natural ingredients, wider distribution points and broadening occasions for usage could encourage consumer engagement and drive the plant protein drinks market forward.

Along with PPDs’ long-established place in the Chinese diet, the increase in disposable incomes of many consumers, fuelled by GDP growth in China, increasing urbanisation and health awareness have contributed towards growth in the market, and should continue to do so going forward. Among plant protein drinks, soy milk is the most popular, partly thanks to its longer history in the market compared to other drinks, which are all relatively new.

On the other hand, higher prices may prove to be a stumbling block for plant protein drinks as a beverage choice when compared to other soft drinks. As well as safety concerns, milk-containing plant protein drinks also face stiff competition from non-retail channels and the use of homemade plant protein drinks (especially for soy milk), which represent barriers to growth going forward”

– Eileen Ngieng – Senior Research Analyst

Some questions answered in this report include:

  • What is the current state of the plant protein drinks market, and how is the market expected to develop in the near future? What are the key market drivers and barriers?
  • What influences consumer behaviour and attitudes towards plant protein drinks, and what are the key factors affecting their product choice and consumption?
  • What areas offer future potential for product development?

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Report structure
        • Definition
          • Methodology
            • China’s PPDs target consumer groups
              • PPD Function Buyers are:
                • PPD Budget Buyers are:
                  • PPD Indulgence Buyers are:
                    • PPD Flexible Buyers are:
                      • Abbreviations
                      • Executive Summary

                          • The market
                            • Figure 1: China retail value sales of plant protein drinks, 2008-18
                            • Figure 2: Plant protein drinks market segmentation, by value (RMB m), 2008-13
                            • Figure 3: Plant protein drinks retail market segmentation, by volume (m litres), 2008-13
                          • Companies and brands
                            • Figure 4: Leading companies’ shares of retail value sales of plant protein drinks in China, 2012
                          • The consumer
                            • PPDs drunk: types, frequency and popularity
                              • Drinking occasions
                                • Retail channels
                                  • Factors considered when buying PPDs
                                    • Features to encourage consumption of PPDs
                                      • Attitudes towards PPDs
                                        • Key issues
                                          • Tap into consumers’ eagerness to learn more about PPDs’ health benefits to enhance understanding
                                            • Wider distribution points for PPDs to capture impulse and on-the-go consumption
                                              • Positioning PPDs towards targeted occasions could help to generate sales
                                                • What we think
                                                • The Market

                                                  • Key points
                                                    • Market size
                                                      • PPDs remain a small category compared to the total soft drinks market
                                                        • Figure 5: Retail sales volume and value of soft drinks, China, 2013
                                                      • PPDs remain small a category, owing to infrequent consumption levels
                                                        • Figure 6: China plant protein drinks per capita retail sales (litres), 2007-12
                                                      • Despite being a small category, PPDs maintain their growth momentum
                                                        • Figure 7: Value and volume retail sales of plant protein drinks, 2008-18
                                                      • Market forecast
                                                        • Figure 8: China retail value sales of plant protein drinks, 2008-18
                                                        • Figure 9: China retail volume sales of plant protein drinks, 2008-18
                                                      • Market segmentation
                                                        • Product type segmentation
                                                          • Figure 10: Plant protein drinks market segmentation, by value (RMB m), 2008-13
                                                          • Figure 11: Plant protein drinks retail market segmentation, by volume (m litres), 2008-13
                                                        • Price by segment
                                                          • Figure 12: Average price of plant protein drinks, by segment, 2008-13
                                                        • Market drivers
                                                          • PPDs perceived as a safer, natural and healthier alternative compared to mammalian milk
                                                            • PPDs look to cater to a more health-conscious population
                                                              • Busier lifestyles should aid growth in PPDs
                                                                • Increasing disposable income and discretionary spending facilitates PPD premiumisation
                                                                  • Market barriers
                                                                    • Price may provide a stumbling block for PPDs when compared to other soft drinks
                                                                      • Figure 13: Average price per litre, by beverage category, China, 2013
                                                                    • Milk-containing PPDs pose safety concerns
                                                                      • Competition from non-retail channels and homemade plant protein drinks (especially for soy milk)
                                                                        • Consumer demand not met by existing product launches in market
                                                                        • Companies and Brands

                                                                          • Key points
                                                                            • The top five brands capture 62% of market
                                                                              • Figure 14: Leading companies’ shares of retail value sales of plant protein drinks in China, 2010-12
                                                                            • Xiamen Yin Lu Co., Ltd.
                                                                              • Coconut Palm Group
                                                                                • Hebei Chengde Lolo Co., Ltd.
                                                                                  • Hebei Yang Yuan Co., Ltd.
                                                                                    • Vitasoy International Holdings Ltd.
                                                                                    • The Consumer – PPDs Drunk – Types, Frequency and Popularity

                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                        • Types of PPDs drunk and its frequency
                                                                                          • Figure 15: Frequency of drinking different types of PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                        • Repertoire of PPDs drunk and frequency of use
                                                                                          • Figure 16: Frequency of drinking different types of PPDs, by repertoire of frequency of usage, November 2013
                                                                                        • Popular types of PPDs and frequency of consumption
                                                                                          • Figure 17: Most popular types of plant protein drinks based on frequency of drinking different types of plant protein drinks, November 2013
                                                                                      • The Consumer – Occasions for Drinking PPDs

                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                          • Occasions for drinking PPDs
                                                                                            • Figure 18: Occasions for drinking PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                          • Part of the meal
                                                                                            • Indulgence purposes
                                                                                              • Functionality
                                                                                                • Social situations
                                                                                                  • Health benefits
                                                                                                    • Repertoire of occasions for drinking PPDs
                                                                                                      • Figure 19: Repertoire of occasions for drinking PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                  • The Consumer – Channels to Market

                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                      • Retail channels for purchasing PPDs
                                                                                                        • Figure 20: Locations for buying PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                      • Repertoire of retail channels to purchase PPDs
                                                                                                        • Figure 21: Locations for buying PPDs, by repertoire of locations for buying PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                    • The Consumer – Factors Considered When Buying PPDs

                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                        • Most important factors considered when buying plant protein drinks
                                                                                                          • Figure 22: Most important factors considered when buying PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                      • The Consumer – Features to Encourage Consumption of PPDs

                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                          • Ingredient considerations could boost the usage of PPDs
                                                                                                            • Figure 23: Factors that would encourage consumers to drink more PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                        • The Consumer – Attitudes towards PPDs

                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                            • Attitudes towards PPDs
                                                                                                              • Figure 24: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                            • Building knowledge of PPDs’ health benefits can boost the market
                                                                                                              • Strengthening the old and building new occasions can boost PPDs sales
                                                                                                                • Improving distribution of PPDs via various channels can boost the market
                                                                                                                  • Milk-containing PPDs may dampen market development
                                                                                                                  • Key Issue – Tapping into Consumer Interest to Learn More About PPDs’ Health Benefits

                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                      • Melamine scandal fuels demand for plant protein drinks
                                                                                                                        • PPDs as an alternative for the lactose-intolerant
                                                                                                                          • Developing lactose intolerance awareness and building lactose-free as a USP will benefit the PPD market
                                                                                                                              • Figure 25: Clear packaging label of lactose-free for other beverages in other countries
                                                                                                                            • Original flavour, well-known brand, good value for money and product origin are the most important choice factors
                                                                                                                              • Figure 26: Top three factors considered when purchasing PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                            • Naturalness, added healthy ingredients and no additives features can encourage more consumption of plant protein drinks
                                                                                                                              • Figure 27: Top three factors that would encourage consumers to drink more PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                            • Growing demand for PPDs with health benefits
                                                                                                                              • Lack of clarity and incorrect product selling points stifle PPDs market
                                                                                                                                • Figure 28: Product origins, 2013
                                                                                                                              • Potential areas for growth
                                                                                                                                • Products with precise messages on health benefits will stand out
                                                                                                                                  • Added ingredients with health benefits could attract consumers
                                                                                                                                    • Products with no additives could dampen consumer concerns
                                                                                                                                      • Transparent packaging to show product quality and naturalness
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 29: Typical packaging of PPDs in China and other markets, 2012
                                                                                                                                      • What it means
                                                                                                                                      • Key Issue – Capturing Impulse and On-the-go Consumption

                                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                                          • Appealing to on-the-go consumers
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 30: Agreement with statements on occasions and channels for drinking PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                          • Outdoor consumption of PPDs in demand
                                                                                                                                            • PPD purchases go beyond retail channels
                                                                                                                                              • Who are the on-the-go core consumers?
                                                                                                                                                • Travel hubs, tourist destinations and leisure places the top locations for on-the-go consumers
                                                                                                                                                  • Airports
                                                                                                                                                    • Train stations, petrol stations and highway rest points
                                                                                                                                                      • Potential in tourist attractions
                                                                                                                                                        • Leisure venues (eg internet cafés, chess and poker rooms, bowling, sports clubs)
                                                                                                                                                          • Packaging innovation to encourage on-the-go usage
                                                                                                                                                            • Iced/warmed PPDs could support throughout the day consumption
                                                                                                                                                              • Iced PPDs
                                                                                                                                                                • Heated PPDs
                                                                                                                                                                  • Self-heating cans
                                                                                                                                                                    • What does it mean?
                                                                                                                                                                    • Key Issue – Occasions for Consuming PPDs

                                                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                        • Positioning around occasions to encourage more sales
                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 31: Agreement with “I would like to see more plant protein drinks designed for various occasions “statement, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                        • Places of work and study still have room for development
                                                                                                                                                                          • Convenient packaging and smaller products can facilitate usage in the workplace
                                                                                                                                                                            • Mintel GNPD shows that PPD claims are ignored or overlooked
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 32: Share of new product launches within the Chinese PPD market, by claims, 2008-12
                                                                                                                                                                            • Functional claims not meeting consumer demand
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 33: Share of new product launches within the Chinese PPD market, by specific claims, 2008-12
                                                                                                                                                                            • Slimming-related claims could appeal
                                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Share of new product launches within the Chinese PPD market, by claims, 2008-12
                                                                                                                                                                            • Xylitol and stevia as natural sweeteners could boost the appeal of PPDs
                                                                                                                                                                              • Natural cane sugar and agave offer viable alternatives to high-fructose corn syrup
                                                                                                                                                                                • Children’s market has great potential
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Convenient PPDs to suit different lifestyles
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 35: Changes in the amount of time spent on leisure, by type of activity compared to 12 months ago, July 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 36: New PPDs product launches based on usability claims, 2008-12
                                                                                                                                                                                  • What does it mean?
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – The Consumer: PPDs Drunk – Types, Frequency and Popularity

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 37: Frequency of drinking different types of PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 38: Frequency of drinking different types of PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Repertoire analysis
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 39: Repertoire of frequency of drinking different types of PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 40: Repertoire of frequency of drinking different types of PPDs, by demographics, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 41: Frequency of drinking different types of PPDs, by repertoire of frequency of usage, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – The Consumer: Occasions for Drinking PPDs

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 42: Occasions for drinking PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Repertoire analysis
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 43: Repertoire of occasions for drinking PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 44: Repertoire of occasions for drinking PPDs, by demographics, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 45: Occasions for drinking PPDs, by repertoire of occasions for drinking PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – The Consumer: Channels to Market

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 46: Locations for buying PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Repertoire analysis
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 47: Repertoire of locations for buying PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 48: Repertoire of locations for buying PPDs, by demographics, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 49: Locations for buying PPDs, by repertoire of locations for buying PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – The Consumer: Factors Considered When Buying PPDs

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 50: Factors considered when buying PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 51: Most important factors considered when buying PPDs, by demographics, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 52: Other factors considered when buying PPDs, by demographics, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – The Consumer: Features to Encourage Consumption of PPDs

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 53: Factors that would encourage consumers to drink more PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 54: Main factors that would encourage consumers to drink more PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 55: Other factors that would encourage consumers to drink more PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – The Consumer – Attitudes towards PPDs

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 56: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 57: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 58: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, November 2013 (continued)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 59: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, November 2013 (continued)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 60: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, November 2013 (continued)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 61: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, November 2013 (continued)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 62: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, November 2013 (continued)
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Target Groups

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 63: Target groups, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 64: Target groups, by demographics, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 65: Frequency of drinking different types of PPDs, by target groups, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 66: Occasions for drinking PPDs, by target groups, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 67: Locations for buying PPDs, by target groups, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 68: Factors considered when buying PPDs, by target groups, November 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 69: Agreement with selected statements on PPDs, by target groups, November 2013

                                                                                                                                                                                  Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                  To learn more about the companies covered in this report please contact us.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Plant Protein Drinks - China - January 2014

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