Global Cheese Market Induced by Growing Population, Increasing Disposable Incomes, Urban Lifestyles and Changing Eating Habits

Cheese represents an indispensable component of the fast food industry. It is generally consumed as a dairy product and sometimes used as an active ingredient in many cuisines, especially in Europe. As it is suitable for people who are lactose intolerant, it has become a popular food across the globe. Cheese is today available in various textures, forms and flavours according to consumer’s needs and demands.

The global cheese market is currently being driven by a number of factors which include growing population, increasing disposable incomes, urban lifestyles, changing eating habits, increasing consumer preference towards cheesy cuisines and trends of experimentation in the food industry. Further, product variations, innovations and better packaging and preserving methods are some of the other factors that are fuelling the growth of this market.

According to research analysts at IMARC Group, the global cheese market reached a volume of 22.7 Million Tons in 2015, growing at a CAGR of around 2% during 2008-2015. It is further expected to grow at a CAGR of around 2% during 2016-2021, reaching a volume of 25.8 Million Tons by 2021.



Cheddar represents the most popular cheese type

The global cheese market can be segmented on the basis of product type – Cheddar, Mozzarella, Processed cheese, Cream cheese and other soft cheese and Fresh and natural cheese. Among all these types, Cheddar represents the world’s most popular cheese variety and accounts for the majority of the total global cheese production. Cheddar is followed by Mozzarella, Processed cheese, Cream cheese and other soft cheese, and Fresh and natural cheese.

Supermarkets dominate the market

The global cheese market can also be segmented on the basis of distribution channels. Supermarkets form an important channel for the purchase of cheese products and exhibit a clear dominance in the market accounting for the majority of the total global share. In this type of distribution channel, manufacturers may directly supply to the supermarkets or wholesalers may act as an intermediary and involve selling of branded and private label products. Supermarkets are followed by foodservice industry and the food processors, convenience stores and discount stores and specialty cheese retailers.

Europe holds the largest share

On a geographical front, the global cheese market has a presence in many countries across the globe. With a share of 47%, Europe represents the leading producer of cheese. In Europe, Germany represents the largest cheese producer followed by France, Italy, the Netherlands and Poland. Further, Europe is followed by North America, Oceania and South America.

Although the developed regions currently account for the majority of the cheese consumption, future growth in these markets is expected to be limited due to the maturity of the market and limited growth in population. On the other hand, developing markets are expected to exhibit higher growth rates over the forecast period.

Krafts Foods Inc. tops the growth charts

The highly fragmented and competitive global market for cheese features a number of small and big players operating in the market. Currently, Krafts Foods Inc. represents the biggest player in the global cheese industry followed by Fonterra Co-operative Group ltd., Bongrain SA, Groupe Bel, Groupe Lactalis, Dairy Farmers of America, Arla Foods and Groupe Danone.

These players are adopting various strategies and are entering into joint ventures and partnerships with existing players to increase their revenue. They are also extending their presence, particularly in the emerging economies complemented by the expansion of distribution capabilities and increasing sales force.

 About IMARC Group: IMARC Group is a leading market research and consulting company that offers management strategy and market research worldwide. The company has done multiple projects on the cheese industry, which has enabled the clients to successfully setup and expand their businesses. Some of the company’s offerings include:

  • Market Research
  • Plant setup
  • Plant Expansion
  • Marketing and sales
  • Procurement and Distribution
  • Innovation and Product Development

For more information on the cheese industry, please visit:


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