The U.S. chocolate market is expected exceed $20 billion by 2025, according to research by United Kingdom-based firm IndexBox.
The research firm noted the market reached $17.6 billion in 2016, up $819 million — or 5 percent — from 2015. This figure reflects total revenue of producers and importers and excludes logistics costs, retail marketing costs and retailers’ margins. Overall, the U.S. chocolate market grew on average by 4.1 percent each year between 2008 and 2016.
Chocolate and confectionery consumption in the United States is expected to continue its upward trend, supported by population growth and rising purchasing power, along with increasing demand for premium chocolate and confectionery items. Furthermore, greater interest in healthy lifestyles continues to drive consumption of sugar-free, organic and dark chocolate.
However, an increase in production costs, which consequently led to a surge in consumer prices, and changes in consumer preferences toward products with lower sugar content are key factors constraining market performance.
As a whole, the market is projected to grow by 1.8 percent each year between 2016 to 2025, putting the expected market value at $20.7 billion by 2025.
In 2016, the value of shipments in the industry reached $16.6 billion, increasing at an average annual rate of 3.9 percent from 2008 to 2016, thanks to strong demand in the domestic market amid rising population and incomes, which, in turn, drive retail sales and food services.
Furthermore, chocolate and chocolate-type confectionery products made from purchased chocolate and not retailed at a manufacturing establishment accounted for more than 60 percent of U.S. chocolate and confectionery manufacturing. Other products lagged behind in terms of volume and shares:
- Chocolate and chocolate-type confectionery products made from cacao beans — 10 percent of total output
- Chocolate coatings made from cacao beans — 8 percent
- Chocolate and chocolate-type confectionery products made from purchased chocolate retailed at manufacturing establishment — 7 percent
Nonetheless, chocolate and chocolate-type products made from purchased chocolate and retailed at a manufacturing facility grew by 14.5 percent each year between 2008 and 2016. The other categories experienced more modest paces of growth.
IndexBox also noted approximately 15 percent of chocolate and confectionery items consumed in 2016 were imports, up 8 percent from 2008. The total value of chocolate and confectionery imports reached $2.7 billion, with Canada and Mexico being the main suppliers at $1.4 billion and $518 million, respectively. Germany and Belgium followed, each accounting for 5 percent.
Meanwhile, the United States exported $1.6 billion in chocolate and confectionery products in 2016, accounting for 10 percent of U.S. chocolate and confectionery output. From 2007 to 2014, the U.S. chocolate and confectionery export value showed steady growth, rising from $775 million in 2007.
Canada received 40 percent of the United States’ chocolate and confectionery exports, followed by Mexico (13 percent), South Korea (4 percent), Japan (3 percent), the Philippines (3 percent) and Brazil (2 percent).