The Middle East Lactose-Free Food Market is projected to grow at a CAGR of around 6.76% during the forecast period of 2023-28, cites MarkNtel Advisors in the recent research report. Over the past few years, the demand for lactose-free products like milk, etc., in the Middle East has been driven by the rising prevalence of lactose intolerance & the growing demand for products with little to no added sugar. Over 68% of individuals across the globe suffer from lactose intolerance, and countries in the Middle East, such as Egypt & Oman, have prevalence rates ranging between 68 to about 96 %, as per the statistics released by the National Center for Biotechnology in 2021.
Further, the market for these food products is growing in the Middle East as a result of consumers' increased awareness of their health & well-being, hence consumers are mitigating towards alternative food products. Additionally, businesses that produce food, like Al Ain farms, Nurishh, etc., are introducing new lactose-free dairy products that would provide consumers with the nutritional & flavor benefits of dairy without the discomfort caused by lactose. As a result, the market for these food products would grow more quickly in the coming years, in line with these new product innovations that meet the growing demand for lactose-alternative food products.
Moreover, to raise awareness among the residents about emerging health issues, the government of several countries, such as the UAE, Saudi Arabia, etc., is running campaigns. As a result, customers are gradually shifting to plant-based food products like soy milk, almond milk, etc., and thus, it is expected that the market for lactose-free food would flourish in the forthcoming years, further states the research report, “Middle East Lactose Free-Food Market Analysis, 2023.”
Surge in Demand for Lactose-Free Milk Owing to the Growing Popularity Among Consumers
Based on the Type, the market is further bifurcated into Milk, Bread, Soups & Desserts, and Others (Yoghurts, Cheese, Non-Dairy Products, etc.). Among them, Milk dominated the market in the historical years due to the rising popularity of lactose-free milk as a replacement for regular dairy milk. The sales of this milk are currently being driven by consumers who prefer to consume lactose-free products because it satisfies the body's nutritional needs without causing unpleasant symptoms.
In addition, Middle Eastern nations like Bahrain, Kuwait, and others are experiencing economic growth as a result of which there is a surge in net disposable income. Further, the companies such as Al Ain Farms, Arla Foods, etc., are diversifying their product offering & are launching more cutting-edge products in the milk category. Therefore, significant growth in the sales of this type in the Middle East is anticipated to support the revenue growth of the market.
Rapid Urbanization & Expansion of the Hospitality Sector in the UAE to Boost the Market
Geographically, the UAE recorded the highest percentage of lactose-free food sales over the historical years. The market for these foods is expanding in the UAE due to the country's growing population, rising health consciousness among the populace & expanding prevalence rates of lactose intolerance. As a result, more consumers are opting for these food products, thereby driving sales in the UAE.
Moreover, several hotels in the UAE have begun serving vegan & lactose-free meals due to the expanding popularity of healthy eating. As a result, the development of the lactose-free food market is expected to be fueled by the UAE's booming hospitality industry and the opening of hotels and restaurants in the coming years.
With strategic initiatives, such as mergers, collaborations, and acquisitions, the leading market players, including Nestlé Middle East FZE, The Danone Company Inc., Arla Foods, Dean’s Food, Shamrock Foods, Kolita Foods, McNeil Nutrionals, Valio, OMIRA Oberland-Milchverwertung (OMIRA), Parmalat, Alpro, Cabot Creamery, Others (Galaxy Nutritional Foods, Green Valley Organics, etc.), are looking forward to strengthening their market position.
Key Questions Answered in the Research Report