MENA’s Condiment & Sauces Market Spiced Up With Food Diversity

    The demand for condiment sauces is significantly high in the food industry, as they make important elements in regional as well as international cuisines. Their availability across borders allows people to connect with ethnic cuisines. Sauces, dressings, and condiments represent a key dipping ingredient for consumers across the world. Middle Eastern cooking traditionally uses a vast array of sauces, from staples like pomegranate molasses to date syrup and tahini. The condiment sauces market recorded growth in Egypt in 2016, according to Euromonitor International. Similarly, Turkey and Morocco’s market witnessed strong growth in the same year.

    The global condiment sauces market is expected to report a CAGR of 3.2% between 2014 and 2020, according to a report by Transparency Market Research. At this pace, the market is expected to reach USD23.4 bn by the end of 2020, from a valuation of USD19.35 bn. It has significant growth opportunities with the increasing awareness about various types of regional cuisines. Furthermore, the introduction of diverse techniques of food preparation will create sales opportunities for the global condiment sauces market. Sauces, dressings and condiments in Egypt recorded growth in sales values of 15% in 2016 mainly due to price inflation and currency fluctuations, especially as the important sauce categories are led by imported brands, while local brands usually import the ingredients for their domestic production. This led to unit price increases in the category, forcing local brands to raise their prices as well. From 2016 to 2021, the market is expected to increase in value at a CAGR of 4% at constant 2016 prices. This rise can be attributed mainly to organic growth among the Egyptian population and the strong sales growth expected in popular categories such as pickled products. However, the adverse economic conditions in Egypt are set to remain the main threat to growth in sales during the forecast period, especially in light of the fact that many of the products in the category are not seen as basic, essential products. As high inflation rates and poor economic conditions are likely to prevail between 2016 and 2021, this is set to lead to low levels of disposable income being spent on packaged food categories which are generally regarded as being unnecessary. In Turkey, the market was impacted by both traditional consumer patterns and the increasing popularity of international cuisine in 2016, according to Euromonitor. For example, tomato pastes and purées (41% of value sales in 2016, current value growth of 11%) and pickled products (8% of value sales, current value growth of 15%) are both traditional products which saw double digit growth rates due to the convenience and variety offered. Tomato pastes and purées are traditionally made at home, particularly in rural areas. However, rising urbanization translated into higher demand for packaged formats. On the other hand, products such as pasta sauces and salad dressings became popular as a result of rising interest in modern cooking and convenient ways to make practical meals flavorsome and appealing. In addition, increasing demand for hygienic packaged products also had a positive impact on performance. Consequently, the market recorded current value growth of 12%, compared to the review period CAGR of 10%. However, this stronger growth was mainly the result of rising unit prices. Sauces, dressings and condiments in Morocco represent important dipping ingredients for local consumers, especially with the rising trend of fast food and takeaway sandwiches. This is driving consumption within the category, which has resulted in increasing sales, recording 4% current value growth and 3% retail volume growth, according to Euromonitor. The Moroccan market is expected to post a retail volume CAGR of 3% and a retail value CAGR of 4% at constant 2016 prices between 2016 and 2021. Volume growth will be on a par with the review period CAGR, while value growth will be higher. This explains the product’s continuous development and diversification that responds to consumers’ demands, especially within a society that is becoming highly sensitive to processed foods due to artificial additives and harmful preservatives.

    Fatima Saab
    Editor & Researcher