China’s baby-care market sees rapid growth

China’s baby-care market achieved total sales of RMB9.617 billion (US$1.4 billion) last year, reflecting rapid growth, according to new research from Mintel.

Between 2013 and last year, the market recorded a CAGR of 19 per cent thanks to the relaxation of the one-child policy and a consumer trend towards premiumisation in the country.

Baby skincare is the largest segment of China’s baby-care market, accounting for 60 per cent. The baby-bath and soap segment comes in second, at 31 per cent, followed by the baby-hair products segment which accounts for roughly 10 per cent.

“China’s baby-care market grew at a considerable rate in recent years and will see sustained growth in the next five years,” said Vicky Zhou, research analyst at Mintel China.

“Although the current slower birth rate will affect the market, increased spending on each child and higher usage frequency should make up for the market’s growth.”

Usage

Insect repellents for babies was the fastest-growing sector last year, with as many as 47 per cent of Chinese consumers aged 20-39 with children aged up to three years old saying they have used baby insect repellents more often during the last year.

Meanwhile, nearly half of Chinese consumers say that they have been using baby shower gels and baby body lotions or creams more often in the past year, rounding up the top three products with the highest change in usage frequency among Chinese consumers.

Baby suncare also has recorded the least increase in usage frequency with only 15 per cent of Chinese consumers having used this more often in the past year, and more than 65 per cent have not used baby sun-care products.

Skin is always a priority among Chinese parents. ‘Solve skin problems’ (71 per cent) and ‘contain ingredients that can benefit skin’ (68 per cent) are the top two attributes that parents are willing to pay a premium for when purchasing baby-care products.

Problems

Just over a third (34 per cent) of Chinese consumers say their biggest concern when choosing products is not knowing if it is suitable for their babies, while 32 per cent say they are afraid to try products they have not used before.


Furthermore, 29 per cent say they do not know the ingredients used in the products, and lack understanding of the advantages of one brand versus another.

“Parents are interested in and willing to pay a premium for baby-care products with premium claims, specifically products that can solve skin problems or contain ingredients that can bring benefits to their babies’ skin,” Zhou concluded.

China’s baby-care market is expected to see sustained growth during the next five years, with total sales set to grow at a CAGR of 14.5 per cent, reaching RMB18.888 billion in 2023.

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