Food Market Trends
Cover picture: © Planet Retail www.planetretail.net
Published by the Victorian Government Department of Primary Industries Melbourne, January 2007
Also published on www.dpi.vic.gov.au/trade
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Department of Primary Industries
1 Spring Street
PO Box 4440
University of New England student working with the DPI Agribusiness Group
Market Information Officer, Strategic Market Analysis
This report provides a general overview of the Hong Kong food market. It aims to identify opportunities for Victorian agri-food producers and exporters by examining current food trends and barriers in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong is an affluent economy and a free market with almost zero import tariffs (with four category exceptions, including an 80% tariff on wine). It is a net food importer, and a market
opportunity for high value food and beverages. Hong Kong is also a gateway for greater China’s food market, and a good test market for other parts of Asia.
Australia, with $786 million of food exports, is the fourth largest food exporter to Hong Kong, after China, USA and Brazil, with Victoria exporting $216 million of food to Hong Kong in 2005-06 (Vic
DPI, 2006). Opportunities for Australian and Victorian food exports include fruit and vegetables, seafood, wine, dairy products, meat and functional foods.
The key driving forces for Hong Kong food trends are food safety, increasing health consciousness,
changing demographics and busy lifestyles. Some significant emerging food consumption trends include organic food; functional food; chilled and frozen meat; convenience food; snack food; and
food for gifts. Opportunities for Victorian food exports are predicted to develop around safe, healthy, nutritional and convenient food.
Supermarket chains and department stores, ‘speciality’ stores, traditional markets and convenience stores are the major food retail channels in Hong Kong. Despite some challenges presented by the
bargaining power of the major supermarket players, supermarket chains and ‘speciality’ stores present an effective distribution channel for imported food. There are limited opportunities for
imported Victorian food in traditional markets and convenience stores, due to the challenges of competing on price and the characteristics of the market segments served by these channels. The food service sector in Hong Kong includes hotels, restaurants and institutions (airlines and hospitals). Due to the growth of tourism, demand for quality food is expected to increase at five
star hotels and high end restaurants. There is also a trend for non-Chinese restaurants emerging, including Japanese food, fast food, coffee and snacks, and casual dining restaurants. Further research is required to analyse the potential of the airline and hospital sectors in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong consumers are not generally brand loyal and are relatively price sensitive with consumer preferences for small and convenient packaging....