From the Field: In-Market Representative Reports – August 2023

August 2023 monthly update from our global network of In-Market Representatives about what's going on in markets around the world.

Food Export – Midwest and Food Export – Northeast have developed a network of 19 uniquely experienced In-Market Representatives around the globe. These local marketing experts in the food industry provide Food Export with on-the-ground assistance to implement our various programs and services.     

In addition, through regular trade servicing, these local representatives report on local issues, trends, and opportunities for international buyers to connect with suppliers of U.S. agricultural and food products. Every month we share with you some of the top market insight from the trade service reports we receive, in order to improve your international export efforts.   

Canada: Regulatory Scrutiny in the Energy Drink Market 

Health Canada was scrutinizing the energy drink market this summer. Several brands were recalled in July due to excessive caffeine content and non-compliance with bilingual labeling requirements. As of August 30th, 27 brands have been recalled, and more are anticipated to follow. Many of these products, mostly from the U.S., face issues related to high caffeine content and lack of required warning statements. Health Canada’s actions reflect a commitment to safety and regulatory compliance in the energy drink sector. 

Caribbean: Unveiling Insights into the Retail Food Market 

The Caribbean region emerges as a significant market for U.S. retail food and beverage suppliers. The Caribbean Basin Agricultural Trade Office (CBATO) in Miami highlights the region’s heavy reliance on imported foods, which is primarily driven by tourism. Economic challenges, such as rising inflation and falling wages impact consumer purchasing power, leading to shifts in buying patterns. Post-Covid-19, health-consciousness has surged, but demand for nutritious foods and specialized diets remains relatively modest due to lower per capita income. Retailers are adapting to the circumstances by investing in online ordering and home delivery systems, services whose demand increased during the pandemic. 

South Korea: Robust Growth in Pet Food Market 

In South Korea, the pet food market is poised for growth, projected to achieve a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 10.79% from 2023 to 2030. This surge is attributed to factors such as the increasing popularity of pets, rising single-person households, and low marriage and birth rates. The market, valued at $1.13 billion in 2022, is expected to reach $2.17 billion by 2030. Dog food dominates with a 65% market share, while cat food and other pet food account for 30% and 5% respectively. South Korean pet owners’ willingness to invest in premium pet food reflects a broader trend driven by growing awareness of animal welfare. 

Taiwan: Innovations in Plant-Based Meat Technologies 

In Taiwan, a groundbreaking development in plant-based meat technologies has been announced. A state-owned startup is set to emerge by year-end, focusing on creating plant-based meat with a fiber structure remarkably like real meat, straying from traditional approaches. These plant-dependent meat analogs, which mimic the taste of chicken, pork, fish, or beef, boast high amounts of soy protein and wheat gluten, eliminating the need for other additives. The technology is set to be environmentally friendly and holds substantial potential for commercialization, positioning Taiwan in a competitive position in the global plant-based meat market.