Vegan Chocolate Market Size, Share & Trends 2017-2031F

Global vegan chocolate market is projected to witness a CAGR of 13.2% during the forecast period 2024–2031, growing from USD 1.11 billion in 2023 to USD 2.99 billion in 2031. Consumers prefer a vegan diet due to their rising intolerance of lactose and the benefits of vegan foods in lowering chronic diseases, which are inducing the growth of the vegan chocolate market. According to a study by the National Library of Medicine conducted in April 2023, about 65% of the global population is lactose intolerant.

Moreover, the lack of sugar-free and low-calorie vegan chocolate options in the market is another factor that is contributing to the rising demand for the product. Manufacturers are taking advantage of the gap prevailing in the market and tapping the consumers with the launch of their products. For instance, in January 2023, Moon Magic announced the launch of vegan, no sugar added, and low-calorie milk chocolate, which has 117 calories and two grams of total sugar. Additionally, the product is gluten-free and keto-friendly.

Other factors that affect the demand for the vegan chocolate market are consumers’ shift towards a healthier lifestyle, growing concerns for animal welfare among the consumers, and a leading shift towards cruelty-free and plant-based alternatives further drive the growth of the vegan chocolate market.

Moreover, product innovation in terms of the launch of vegan chocolates in different flavors and textures is further supplementing the growth of the market and helping in the expansion of its appeal.

Vegan chocolate has various applications such as it can be used for baking and production of ice creams, desserts, and beverages. The key players and other start-up brands are innovating their products, methods of production, and recipes to contribute to the growth of the market.

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Lower Risk of Cancer Driving the Market Growth

Vegan chocolates have a significant effect in lowering the risk of cancer as they have ingredients such as cocoa, nuts, seeds, and fruits which are rich in antioxidants and vitamins. These ingredients have minerals and phytonutrients, possess anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties, helping in combating oxidative stress, inflammation, and DNA damage which helps in lowering the risk of development of cancer.

Vegan chocolates contain phytochemicals, the nutrients that the immune system needs to fight off chronic diseases such as cancer. They also contain more fiber than traditional dairy chocolates, which helps in lowering the cancer risk. It is researched by the American Cancer Society, that vegans, appear to have the lowest rates of cancer of any diet. It is also estimated that 1.9 million cases of cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S. in 2022. While some people have a higher genetic risk of developing cancer, research shows that nearly 25% of overall cancer cases could be prevented with proper diet and nutrition.

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Rising Collaborations are Gaining the Trend

Collaborations and partnerships among the manufacturers have played a crucial role in fostering the growth of the vegan chocolate market. These partnerships have helped the manufacturers in sourcing ingredients such as rich quality cocoa, nuts, fruits, and alternative sweeteners from the suppliers and producers to ensure a consistent and sustainable supply chain for vegan chocolate production. This helps the manufacturers pool resources, expertise, and research capabilities to innovate and develop new formulations, flavors, and product lines in the vegan chocolate segment, ensuring to provide high-quality and rich-flavored products to the consumers.

Additionally, collaborations play a vital role in the expansion of distribution channels, through retailers and e-commerce platforms, facilitating the easy distribution and availability of vegan chocolates to a wider audience globally. Collaborative marketing initiatives such as joint advertising campaigns help in raising awareness among the vegan population.

In February 2023, OCHO Candy, a Californian chocolate brand collaborated with Miyoko’s Creamery to introduce a range of caramels. These caramels are made with Miyoko’s European-Style Cultured Vegan Butter and coconut, which is a breakthrough product innovation ideal to cater the vegan consumers.

Environmentally Friendly Vegan Chocolates to Gain Momentum

Sustainable and environmentally friendly vegan chocolates are gaining popularity among consumers for several reasons. Sustainable vegan chocolates contribute to the reduction of environmental footprint during their production as compared to traditional dairy-based chocolates. Plant-based ingredients used in vegan chocolates require fewer natural resources and generate lower greenhouse gas emissions, having a reduced impact on land and water resources, making them a more environmentally sustainable solution.

In June 2022, Mars, Incorporated in partnership with Perfect Day introduced CO2COA, a vegan chocolate innovation. This product is the company’s first-ever eco-friendly and animal-free chocolate innovation in the United States market. The product has been developed with Rainforest Alliance-certified cocoa and leads to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions while sourcing.

Additionally, consumers seeking healthier snack options are drawn to sustainable vegan chocolates for their potential health benefits. Sustainable vegan chocolate brands prioritize transparency and traceability in their sourcing practices, ensuring that ingredients are ethically sourced, organic, and free from harsh chemicals or additives.

Sustainable vegan chocolates are known for their innovation in product offerings, including unique flavor combinations and creative package designs. This diversity appeals to consumers, who can indulge in the enriched experience of vegan chocolates while supporting sustainable and ethical practices.

Dark Vegan Chocolate is Dominating the Market

Dark vegan chocolate is dominating the market over milk and white vegan chocolate because of its health benefits such as lower sugar content and the presence of antioxidants, appealing to health-conscious consumers. Having a less sweet and more complex flavor profile provides a rich taste to the consumers.

In August 2022, Läderach Chocolatier Suisse announced the launch of new vegan chocolates, including cashew milk as a replacement for dairy milk and coconut blossom sugar for the substitution of sugar without the addition of any preservatives.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, a 101-gram (g) bar of dark chocolate with 70–85% cocoa solids provide 604 calories, 7.87 g of protein, 43.06 g of fat, 46.36 g of carbohydrates, 11.00 g of dietary fiber, 24.23 g of sugar, 12.02 mg of iron, 230.00 mg of magnesium, 3.34 mg of zinc. This list of ingredients contributes to its health benefits, having larger amounts of nutrients. These health benefits include the prevention of oxidative stress and reduction in the development of heart diseases. It also helps in the stimulation of nitric oxide production in the body to help in the improvement of blood flow and lower blood pressure, lower the level of cholesterol, and minimize insulin resistance. It further prevents neurodegenerative conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, reduces inflammation in the body, and benefits the gut microbiome.

Future Market Scenario (2024–2031F)

The lactose-intolerant population is expected to drive increased demand for vegan chocolates.

According to a study by Boston Children’s Hospital, currently, 30 to 50 million Americans are lactose intolerant. 80% of all African Americans and Native Americans are lactose intolerant. Over 90% of Asian-Americans are lactose intolerant. The number of lactose-intolerant consumers is on the rise and will expand the demand for vegan alternatives, contributing to the growth of vegan chocolate market.

As lactose-intolerant individuals experience digestive discomfort, they will seek alternative food options that do not contain lactose. Thus, key players are tapping the market through continuous product innovation and the introduction of the latest vegan chocolates which would be suitable for the lactose-intolerant population, helping them consume the chocolates without experiencing any digestive issues.

Report Scope

“Vegan Chocolate Market Assessment, Opportunities and Forecast, 2017–2031F”, is a comprehensive report by Markets and Data, providing in-depth analysis and qualitative and quantitative assessment of the current state of global vegan chocolate market, industry dynamics, and challenges. The report includes market size, segmental shares, growth trends, opportunities, and forecast between 2024 and 2031. Additionally, the report profiles the leading players in the industry mentioning their respective market share, business model, competitive intelligence, etc.

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