According to a report by Allied Market Research, significant growth is expected for the vegan chocolate market over the coming decade, with the market value expected to rise from $585.8 million in 2022 to $2 billion in 2032 — a CAGR of 13.1%.
Demand will be driven by an increased focus on sustainable and animal-friendly options, along with the perception of plant-based products as a healthier choice.
“There has been a growing interest in plant-based diets and healthier food options.”
However, the market could be restrained by a lack of production capacity, along with the difficulty of sourcing ingredients at a reasonable cost. Additionally, plant-based chocolate typically requires significant R&D due to the challenge of replicating the taste and texture of dairy-based products, and distribution is more limited than for conventional chocolate.
To counter these challenges, the report recommends using innovative ingredients and superfoods such as chia seeds, goji berries, acai powder, or spirulina. This, along with unique flavors such as chili, matcha, and lavender, could help plant-based products to stand out.
Shift in consumer behavior
Alternatives to milk chocolate are expected to dominate the vegan chocolate market, appealing to those who are lactose intolerant or have a milk allergy as well as those who avoid dairy for ethical or health reasons. Molded bars will be the most popular format. Hypermarkets and supermarkets are predicted to be the most significant distribution channels, and North America will dominate by region.
The report supports the conclusion of other research, which has also predicted strong growth for the vegan chocolate market due to growing awareness of animal welfare and the environment.
“The pandemic has led to individuals prioritizing their health and well-being. Therefore, there has been a growing interest in plant-based diets and healthier food options. This shift in consumer behavior positively affected the demand for vegan chocolate, as it is considered a healthier alternative to conventional chocolate,” says the report.