FMCG demand stabilizes


    Nestle Philippines Inc. expects demand for fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) to stabilize until the first quarter after a fluctuation throughout the pandemic.

    Kaiz Marzouki, Nestle Philippines president, told the Oxford Business Group (OBG) in its COVID-19 Economic Impact Assessment report the company has noted demand had fallen below pre-pandemic levels as of the third quarter.

    “Demand for FMCG has fluctuated throughout the different stages of the pandemic: we witnessed a surge in the initial weeks, followed by stagnation as many households experienced lower or no income, “ OBG quoted Marzouki as saying.

    Marzouki also shared Nestle’s observations on consumer behavior throughout the pandemic which he said impacted a number of channels and categories in different ways.

    He told OBG consumers have broadly shifted from out-of-home to at-home consumption, which translated to more cooking and baking at home. Consumers also focused on health and nutrition.

    But when asked to what extent the pandemic will encourage food-manufacturing companies to stock up in the event of another crisis, Marzouki said: “Companies will not have to manage as extreme of adjustments as they did during the first lockdown.”

    “Most organisations have now learned how to navigate an extraordinary situation such as a lockdown,” Marzouki said in the report.

    He added consumers understood that a lockdown would not automatically lead to food shortages.

    “For example, during the second lockdown in July 2020 we did not witness long lines in front of supermarkets,” he told OBG. — Irma Isip