The size of the world cheese market is estimated to increase by $39.1 billion from 2022 to 2027, according to a new report from Technavio.

The market’s growth momentum will progress at a CAGR of 4.5% during the forecast period, and the growth will be driven by the surging adoption of cheese products in different cuisines.

“There has been an increasing preference for cheese among various households, and it is used in different forms ranging from sliced cheese for sandwiches to shredded cheese for pizza toppings and grated cheese for pasta dishes,” according to Technavio.

Additionally, there is an increase in the consumption of cheese globally. As cheese is more available in different forms, it’s increasingly used in a variety of culinary preparations.

“The main advantage of cheese is that it can be melted, grated, sliced, and crumbled so as to create a variety of textures and presentations,” according to the report. “Such factors are expected to drive the cheese market during the forecast period.”

The market is fragmented, and the degree of fragmentation will accelerate during the forecast period, according to the report.

To thrive, competitors will need to focus on differentiating their product offerings with unique value propositions to strengthen their foothold in the market. Market vendors also have to leverage the existing growth prospects in the fast-growing segments, while maintaining their positions in the slow-growing segments.

Key Trends addressed in the report include:

  • The increasing growth of online retailing is a key trend in the global cheese market during the forecast period. The rise in Internet penetration has fueled the growth of e-commerce enterprises across the world. 
  • The increasing desire to shop more easily and with ease of purchasing, attractive pricing, as well as personalized product offerings, are significantly contributing to the growth of the online-retailing market.
  • The emergence of online retailing has offered tremendous opportunities for cheese product suppliers to maximize sales, broaden customer reach, and improve the profitability of business relationships with clients.
  • Retailers can leverage these e-commerce platforms to improve their product visibility across several geographical regions. Hence, such factors are expected to drive the cheese market during the forecast period.

Major challenges

Several health issues related to cheese product consumption are impeding the market growth during the forecast period, according to the report.

The high saturated fat contained in cheese is one of the major concerns regarding the health issues associated with the consumption of cheese.

The increasing consumption of high-fat cheeses can significantly impact cardiovascular health.

Lactose intolerance is another major issue associated with cheese consumption as many consumers find it hard to digest lactose, the natural sugar in milk and dairy products.

Furthermore, high sodium levels are significantly present in processed and aged cheese. The excessive intake of sodium can lead to high blood pressure or an increased risk of heart disease, factors that are expected to hinder market growth during the forecast period.

One of the main factors fueling the demand for the natural cheese segment is the increasing desire among consumers to buy authentic and high-quality cheeses. Furthermore, this segment is widely available in different flavors, textures, and varieties to cater to different consumer preferences. Hence, such factors are expected to drive market growth during the forecast period.

In 2022, natural cheese accounted for a significant revenue share of the global cheese market, according to the report. Natural cheese distinguishes itself by utilizing natural ingredients and conventional cheesemaking procedures in its traditional production processes

“Consumer desires for authentic and high-quality cheese products drive the demand for natural cheese,” according to Technavio. “And it’s available in various flavors, textures, and varieties to satisfy consumer preferences.”

Popular natural cheese options include cheddar, mozzarella and Swiss.

“The demand for natural cheese in the global cheese market is expected to be further fueled during the forecast period by rising consumer awareness of the health benefits of natural and organic products.”

Innovation in flavor characteristics, packaging, and environmentally friendly production methods also continue to be a bigger and bigger factor in the cheese industry.

Technavio cites, for example, Kraft Heinz’s recent introduction of a sustainable, biodegradable packaging solution for its cheese products, which aligns with the preferences of the consumers demanding environmentally friendly alternatives.

This article is an excerpt from the February 2024 issue of Supermarket Perimeter. You can read the entire Cheese Forecast feature and more in the digital edition here.