A growing population, rising prosperity and urbanisation are all expected to conspire to bring about a boom in global dairy sales.
While consumption is expected to fall in Western Europe, which has the highest per capita milk sales in the world today, in other regions a big increase in sales is expected.
Global demand for milk and other liquid dairy products like infant milk and drinking yoghurt stood at 270 billion litres in 2010. That figure is expected to increase to some 350 billion litres by 2020.
Packaged milk shift
Moreover, Tetra Pak expects a significant shift towards packaged milk over the coming years.
CEO Dennis Jönsson said in a conference call that 2014 is predicted to be the “tipping point” when packaged milk in developing countries outsells loose milk.
Just over half the milk drunk in developing countries was bought loose last year. But by 2014 the proportion sold in packages is expected to rise to 55 per cent and then climb to 70 per cent by 2020.
Jönsson honed in on Vietnam as an example of a country that is driving global dairy growth.
With GDP per capita tripling over the past decade, the country has a burgeoning middle class interested in dairy products and their role in nutrition.
The result is a per capita growth in liquid dairy consumption of 22 per cent a year.
However, not all countries in the developing world are growing at quite that rate and in some mature markets growth is not happening at all.
North America and Western Europe are stagnant or declining but are still expected to consume more per capita than any other region in 2020. They therefore remain markets that are impossible to ignore.
Taking Spain as an example to follow, Jönsson said value-added products promoting convenience and health and wellness are likely to offer the best opportunities in these mature markets. Continued and deeper commitment on sustainability is also expected to be an important key to retaining consumer loyalty.