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LDP grows 19% in a decade.

KARACHI, July 29 -- Consumption of packaged liquid dairy products (LDP) has grown by 19 percent per annum from 1999 to 2009, an official of Dairy Index said Wednesday.

In 2009, LDP consumption reached 18.9 billion litres, keeping Pakistan firmly in position as the fourth largest LDP consumer in the world after India, China and the United States, managing director Tetra Pak Pakistan, Azhar Ali Syed said.

He said this information on world dairy, juice, nectars, still drinks and other categories is primarily used to be presented to industry stakeholders and policy planners.

Syed said, "With Pakistan's population growing by 1.6 percent annually and total LDP consumption forecast to grow even higher over the years, dairy industry in Pakistan is expected to remain strong". From 2006 to 2009 alone, consumption of packaged LDP grew by 8.4 percent per annum compared with unpackaged products, which only grew by 2.1 percent per annum, he maintained.

Currently, 30 percent of Pakistan's population is under 9 years of age and 53 percent is under 19 years, he added.

To appeal to these younger consumers, dairy producers in Pakistan have the opportunity to promote ready-to-drink flavoured milk products.

He said, "Flavoured milk represents only 2.5 percent of the LDP market in Pakistan, however, it grew by 79 percent per annum from 2007 to 2009 and is forecast to grow by an additional 23.1 percent per annum from 2009 to 2012. Rising population of Pakistan is also increasing the number of people falling in the middle class category.

These people can now afford more premium-priced products such as skimmed milk and ready-to-drink flavoured milk.

The Dairy Index tracks facts, figures and trends in the global dairy industry. According to Dairy Index reports over the last 10 years, the ratio of urban population in Pakistan has grown by 3 percentage points and as people move further away from dairy farms, availability and access to fresh, unpackaged milk is significantly affected. The index forecast that changing demographics are driving demand of LDP in Pakistan.

Urbanisation has also created a more educated and sophisticated segment of consumers, which values the safety, hygiene and convenience of processed, packaged milk, he added.

First brought out in June 2009 by Tetra Pak, the Dairy Index is based on the company's vast database (compass) and unrivalled experience in tracking and analysing category consumption patterns and trends in more than 150 markets around the world.

Milk has always played a central role in the Pakistani diet but with demographic changes driving new preferences, the era of nothing but plain, white, unpackaged milk is rapidly changing. Our dairy industry needs to understand these changes and leverage them as productive opportunities, he concluded.

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Publication:Daily Times (Lahore, Pakistan)
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Jul 29, 2010
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