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Increasing awareness for healthy and climate friendly food and beverages creates opportunities in Sweden

20.02.2019
Swedish consumers are adopting more sustainable and healthy lifestyles as they become increasingly health conscious and concerned about environmental threats. The changing consumption habits create interesting opportunities for Finnish food and beverage companies in Sweden.

Interest for healthy and sustainable food is increasing in Sweden. For example, demand for vegan and vegetarian products is growing, as more Swedish are becoming flexitarians, vegetarians or vegans. While Swedish consumers expect their food to be climate friendly and healthy, it also needs to taste good and fit their busy lifestyles. Accordingly, there is a demand for healthy snacks, ready-to-eat and to-go food products.

Despite that Swedish food market is considered competitive, interest for innovative products and exciting new brands exists. Finnish companies' assets in the competitive Swedish food market are natural and healthy, high quality ingredients that meet the demand for pure and healthy food. Furthermore, Finnish expertise in the free from category is an advantage in the Swedish market where free from products have become relatively popular. 

Companies and sectors benefitting from this opportunity

  • Food and beverage companies

Solutions or products needed

  • Healthy food products and beverages
  • Climate friendly products, e.g. organic
  • Vegan/vegetarian/plant-based products
  • Snacks, ready-to-eat, to-go

Team Finland activities available for Finnish companies

Sweden is one of the focus countries in the Food from Finland growth program. During 2019, Food from Finland will organize following activities in Sweden:

  • Partnering tour to Sweden and Denmark 25. - 28.3. 2019
  • Nordic Organic Trade Fair in Malmö 13.-14.11.2019

In addition, Business Finland has Global Network employees in Sweden. With their knowledge of the market, they are able to advise and connect Finnish companies with relevant players in the value chain.

Are you interested in seizing the opportunity?

Please contact our advisor Vilma Rissanen, vilma.rissanen (at) businessfinland.fi, +46 730 28 14 31.

Read more

Due to increasing awareness of health and environmental issues, Swedish consumers are adopting healthier and more sustainable consumption habits. Consequently, the three major trends characterizing the Swedish food market are healthy food, environmentally friendly food and healthy snacking.

Organic food has experienced strong growth since 2014 and Sweden has one of the highest shares of organic in food. According to Ekoweb, the share of organic was 9,6 % in 2018, that is EUR 2,8 billion (7,6 % share of the retail market, EUR 1,6 billion). While organic has become standard offering in many food categories, the yearly two digit growth of organic food during the past five years slowed down to an increase of 4,0 % in 2018 (+ 0,2 % in retail). Reason behind the moderate growth is Swedish consumers' interest in and awareness of environmental questions, resulting in other categories perceived climate friendly, such as local food and vegan alternatives, now competing with organic.

Environmental consciousness has been an underlying factor behind increasing popularity of free from food as well. According to Euromonitor, free from category increased by 10,1 % in value in 2018 and reached a value of EUR 375,7 million. The free from category is characterized by premium products and despite high competition within a specific free from category as well as competition between the free from and the equivalent "normal" category, there is potential for new products and brands to enter the market.

At the same time, demand for products that are not only free from, but complete substitutes, for example vegan alternatives, is growing. As more Swedes are following vegan, vegetarian or flexitarian diets, the range of products suitable for these diets has expanded. Furthermore, demand for snacks that are perceived healthy, such as fruit and nut bars is growing. According to Euromonitor, the naturally healthy packaged food category reached EUR 976,9 million in 2018, with 2,9 % growth compared with the previous year, fruit and nut bars recording the highest growth of the category, + 10,4 %.

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