Brits bowled over by breakfast cereals

January 22, 2010

Just in time for Farmhouse Breakfast Week (starting 24th January) new research from Mintel’s Global Market Navigator (GMN) reveals British consumers are a nation bowled over by breakfast cereal, spending a healthy £28 per head (or a total of £1.8 billion) on breakfast cereal in the last year alone, up from £1.7 billion in 2008 and a figure Mintel estimates will grow to a massive £2.2 billion by 2014.
Mintel’s latest research on the cereal market shows some 87% adults in the UK eat cold breakfast cereal on at least a daily basis. In addition, for 6% adults in the UK, cereal is more than purely a breakfast staple: it is an easy, quick and nutritious meal substitute that is a regular and core food choice. And it is not just packet cereal which is doing well, cereal bars and hot cereal sectors are worth £310 million and £103 million respectively in the UK. Ready to eat cereals make up the biggest proportion of the UK market (76%), with consumers spending £1.3 billion on this cereal type in 2008.
While our commitment to the cereal packet is evident, the research also reveals which cooked breakfast component most tickles our tastebuds. It seems bacon is the nation’s favourite cooked breakfast ingredient, with consumers spending a sizzling £18 per head in the past year alone. Eggs are bacon’s nearest rival, with Brits spending a cracking £10 per head annually, meanwhile consumers spent an average of £9 per head on sausages and £5 per head on canned beans.
Diana Nahn, Global Market Navigator analyst at Mintel said:
“As Farmhouse Breakfast Week begins, it’s a positive endorsement to find us Brits are taking breakfast seriously and proving that by our ongoing spend on cereals. In addition, several factors will continue to push the value of breakfast cereals upwards. Consumers have moved away from buying breakfast from coffee shops or sandwich outlets during the economic difficulties of the past year, opting instead for eating cereals at home or at the office. Cereals can also represent a cheap meal option, replacing ready meals or other foods for lunch or dinner for example.”
It also seems Britain beats its European neighbours in terms of spending on cereal. When it comes to the Big 5 European countries (UK, Spain, Germany, Italy and France) Britain is the top breakfast cereal spender, Mintel’s GMN finding that Brits munched their way through £28 worth of the stuff. Across the channel, France spends just £7 per head on cereal and Spain, Italy and Germany even less at just £5 each.
Meanwhile, today plain flavoured cereals make up by far the biggest part of the UK cereal market (34 out of the 111 UK cereal products launched in 2009 were this variety) but could we stomach Tutti Fruity, Coriander or even Spicy flavours in the future first thing in the morning? Mintel has tracked some unusual possible flavour trends from around the globe for our morning meal. In Brazil, Cristal Mel Flocos de Milho Sabor Tutti Frutti (Tutti-Fruity Flavored Corn Flakes) are produced under the Cristal Mal brand, the product is free from trans fat and retails in a 40g recyclable pack. In India, Next-O-Diet Wheat Puffs are made from whole wheat and are low in fat and cholesterol. The organic cereal is rich in fibre and protein, and is said to be good for digestion, weight loss, longevity and mental efficiency in children and adults. It features a Spicy flavour, including ingredients such as mango powder and green chilli. In the Czech Republic, Emco released Muesli under the Emco brand. Emco Zimní Müsli (Muesli) is a special edition product for the winter season. This product contains almonds and a mixture of spices -cinnamon, cloves and coriander. It is aimed at children, and retails in a 300g carton pack.

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