Latest! The 5 Hong Kong Food Service Market Trends
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues for over 2 years, Hong Kong’s food industry and consumers’ habits changed a lot. The industry is undergoing a great shuffle and this may bring chances for new food businesses to enter Hong Kong’s market.
In this blog, we are going to introduce 5 main latest Hong Kong food service market trends by InvestHK.
Trend 1: Green Eating
Plant-based meat is being globally popular nowadays. Especially in Asia, people are combining plant-based meat with their traditional Asian cuisines, such as meat buns and dumplings, to immerse the green eating concept into their own food culture.
In Hong Kong, there are restaurants of many different kinds of global cuisines. Restaurant chains and classy restaurants are arranging their dishes to fit Asians’ preferences and started to introduce new green dishes to their menus.
According to Euromonitor’s estimation, the global plant-based meat market and milk substitute market would be growing to about 27.5 billion USD and 22.5 billion USD sizes, which APAC area accounts for respectively 74.5% and 48% of the whole world’s market.
In the report of InvestHK, it is stated that there are approximately 40% of Hong Kong citizens who are semi-vegetarians, and 52% of the interviewees expressed “agree” or “strongly agree” to the statement “we should consume more plant-based substitutes”. Green Common, the plant-based meat online shop in Hong Kong, is having it sales grown by 77%, while the food delivery service Deliveroo also stated that the order rate of plant-based substitute products has grown by 160% under the COVID-19 pandemic, showing the continuously growing size of Hong Kong’s green eating market.
Trend 2: Grab and Go
“Grab and Go” style fits Hong Kong citizens very well as the pace of living is very speedy in Hong Kong.
For example we have Hanamusubi, a shop chain of Japanese rice balls, launched in Hong Kong in 2011, has now expanded their business to 102 shops. Mr Nishida, the founder of Hanamusubi, commented that “Hong Kong citizen’s love to Japanese food, ability of casual consumption and valued food quality” led to the business’s success.
Especially there are still restrictions for dine-in due to the COVID rules in Hong Kong, we can see a rapid growth of snack shops and drink shops which are specialized for take-out. Other restaurants also started to rearrange and simplify their menus for taking-out in order to catch the trend.
Trend 3: More Affordable Rent, Leading Growth of Small Shops and Pop-up Stores
Tsim Sha Tsui, Mongkok and Causeway Bay areas, which used to be filled up with retail stores, showed a sharp decrease in rent starting from the year 2019. Although the drop slowed down due to Hong Kong’s economic recovery, there was still a 37.1% decrease for shopping mall stores’ rent and a 50.2% decrease for street stores’ rent in 2021 comparing to 2019.
As the demand of take-out orders increases, food businesses could be started even only using a small area such as an 18-27 square meter store. Therefore, it is easy for franchise businesses to develop, and suitable for new businesses and chefs to try their new ideas in Hong Kong at the present.
Trend 4: Food Trading and Manufacturing Chance in GBA
In order to handle the supply chain issue, food and drink manufacturers are considering setting up their production line in Asia. Some of the manufacturers are setting up pilot facilities in Hong Kong to make use of Hong Kong’s advanced manufacturing capabilities, and aiming to expand their businesses to the GBA area.
Last year, Nissin Foods Hong Kong received 15 million HKD of subsidy from the Hong Kong government’s Re-industrialization Funding Scheme, for implementing their new smart production line in Hong Kong.
The digital ecosystem of food business, such as food delivery, online grocery stores and cloud kitchens, is well developed in Hong Kong. Food service businesses could make use of Hong Kong to get their local partners for financial, logistics and operation support, examine their recipes and concepts for Asian and Chinese markets, and spread their brands from Hong Kong to the huge GBA market of 86 million Chinese consumers.
Trend 5: Food Delivery and Online Grocery Stores
Affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, food businesses are paying more attention to the collaboration with food delivery services. Food delivery services are having their sales share among the whole Hong Kong food service market, growing from 4.4% in 2016 to 22.3% in 2021, and becoming one of the restaurants’ major sources of income.
Apart from food delivery, the food service industry is also having its digitalization on grocery sales. Although supermarkets and wet markets are easily accessible in Hong Kong, consumers are refraining from leaving home under the COVID-19 pandemic, which created a business chance for online grocery shopping.
Please stay tuned for more details on facts and usage of Hong Kong’s food delivery industry in our next blog.
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