The COVID-19 outbreak started spreading from Wuhan, China, and became widespread across countries, has affected the livelihood of millions. Moreover, the pandemic has led to economic decline in various regions due to lack of business activities. For Instance, according to the United Nations, including USA, the Central America has seen a -2.3% of economic contraction, due to decline in economic activities. Thus, pandemic has laid out a drastic impact on all industries and sectors in the market, while hampering the supply and demand of the market.
Due to this disrupted market, various sectors have seen major changes in consumption behavior of the consumers. A change that stands out during these fickle times is the increased consumption of natural and organic products such as gourmet salt. The major reason for such changes among the consumers is the growing awareness for health and what they consume at home to stay healthy and protected against the coronavirus.
Hypertension is found to be one the reasons leading to chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease (CVD), making these patients more vulnerable to the high risk of COVID-19. With increase in number of population with hypertension, there will be a significant rise in COVID-19 cases. For instance, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as per the data from National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, in 2015 - 2016, in US hypertension increased among adults from 31.6% to 48.3% since 1999-2000 to 2015-2016.
Such instances have made consumers more aware about what they eat. Due to which consumers have been more conscious regarding the sodium intake form the food. As larger intake of sodium result in increased risk to hypertension, the consumer preference has shifted to gourmet salt. This is because in comparison to normal table salt, gourmet salts have less quantity of sodium and various nutrients and mineral benefits.
In the beginning of 2020, the pandemic has resulted in a drastic increase in the demand for food and food supplements that are healthy in nature and consist of various nutrition and minerals. As COVID-19 is at high risk in patients with hypertension, stroke and cardiovascular diseases, demand for products such as gourmet salts which consist of lower amount sodium has increased. Also, as consumers are making lifestyle changes such as shift towards organic and natural food, in their diets, the demand of gourmet salts will further improve. For instance, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as per the data from National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, in 2015-2018, approximately 17.1% people were on special diets in the US, which included weight loss or low calorie, low fat or low cholesterol food and beverages food items.
During this crisis time, health has become an imperative issue for consumers. From making smaller changes such as low sodium to major lifestyle changes such as organic and natural food, consumers have put health as a priority. As gourmet salts are well known organic and natural food communities which are on some special diets, the consumption of these products is expected to increase with COVID-19 and after COVID-19. Thus, few companies have been launching new products to meet the growing demand.
Thus, depicting a positive impact on demand and major shift in consumers towards gourmet salts.
The restriction imposed during lockdown has changed the mind-set of the consumers and business enterprises towards the online shopping and e-commerce platform that has augmented the growth of the market. The partnership with online delivery platforms such as Walmart, Amazon and others has also supported the supply chain of gourmet salt in the US market. With social media and e-commerce providing a huge platform for major and minor gourmet salt manufacturers, the consumers have been abled with ordering and pick-up at their convenience or get their order shipped at their locations. Few companies have also developed their own e-commerce platforms that have benefitted their supply chain, which has overall enhanced the demand of gourmet salt.
Due to the pandemic, the global economy has taken a hit, which has resulted in the major breakdown of various industries. This disruption has followed through niche sectors such as gourmet salts, interfering with the supply chain and demand of the company. The economy with this major downfall can only be rebuilt by a combined effort of industry players, government and consumers. The overall measures for wellbeing of individual have been incorporated, keeping in mind the isolation at home and by staying alert of the food and clinical supplies, especially for the underprivileged communities are being thoughtfully tracked by government across the country. Retaining and boosting immunity has become a major concern for the consumers. For which consumers have been taken various precautions and actions to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Moreover, such trends and behavioral changes are expected to stick with the consumers even after the pandemic is over. Thus, it is expected that the overall market will grow further more after this global pandemic is over.