The Middle East & Africa rice protein market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 5.92% to reach a market size of US$3.715 million in 2025 from US$2.632 million in 2019. Protein is an important micronutrient responsible for the growth and development of the body muscles. It increases muscle mass and strength. It also reduces the level of hunger in the body by decreasing the amount of hunger hormone ghrelin and aids in feeling full even with less food. A novel product rice protein is a protein supplement, enriched with high amounts of amino acids, vitamin B and vitamin E. It has no allergic responses as it is free of dairy, whey or soy and promotes metabolism and burning of fat.
In the UAE, 80% of men and 67% of women aged 15 years or above are overweight, according to a study by the World Health Organization. Chronic issues like heart disease, pain, and other immune diseases are increasing at a rapid rate. Such trends are believed to seen in other Middle East countries too. In Africa also, in addition to communicable diseases, various non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and obesity cases are rising due to behavioral, physiological and environmental factors. As a result, consumers are rapidly changing consumer habits to increase the intake of nutrients.
The changing consumer behavior in the Middle East & Africa with respect to convenience, health-orientation and locally produced products is transforming the consumption patterns in this region.
Consumers in the Middle East prefer packaged products that are mainly composed of natural ingredients. Recently, consumers are considering health and wellness benefits while buying food products. Also, they have become price-sensitive and readily switch to cheaper brands. The rising awareness of health-related issues due to the consumption of animal foods is expected to drive a change towards the adoption of plant-based diets. But the Middle East region is not expected to show a huge demand, instead of a steady rate, for high-end food supplements for fitness freaks.
In August 2017, Amazonia launched its nutritional rice protein supplement in association with Raw Distribution in UAE. The company claims to create the worlds’ most appetizing and nourishing food products to supplement the growth of the body.
From the viewpoint of the producer, geopolitical and macroeconomic risks can influence the operations of the business in this region. The possibility of civil and international conflicts and the growing influence of fundamentalism may also impact the operations of the businesses.
African region consists of 54 countries, with diverse cultures, regulations, and technological developments. In recent years, there has been a surge in population growth with rising proportions of younger populations. The economic growth is centered on urban areas with rising urbanization trends. Consequently, the demand for fitness clubs and gyms is also expected to grow in certain parts of this region. Increasing access to technology is also expected to bring positive change to the wellness and fitness industry. The growth is not just expected to come through clubs or gyms, but the attitude towards food will also experience similar trends. This is expected to augment the sales for the rice protein market in African countries.
In South Africa, food & beverage industry players are using rice protein as an active ingredient in their product offerings. For instance, The Fry Family Food Co., a leading South African plant-based meat producer, has launched “Crafted”, a range of 100% meat-free foods based out of natural ingredients like rice protein and flax seeds, among others. The company received the award for “Best Vegan Meat” at Vegfest UK 2017.