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Global Egg & Dairy Industry Statistics


The world dairy market is expected to reach almost $371 billion in 2014, representing nearly 24% expansion over five years, reports MarketLine. The market (similarly to the global food sector) is highly fragmented with the three leading companies representing just over 11% of the market. The EU region accounts for over half the global market in terms of value at 37%. Danone is the world leader in the dairy market with almost 5% market share.

Milk represents more than 35% of the overall dairy market. It is a central component of the average diet due to its near 20% whey protein content. Milk is also the only food product containing casein, a protein packed with essential amino acids, which accounts for the remaining 80% of milk’s protein content.


The US egg industry has shown rapid expansion over the past few decades, meeting close to all commercial egg demand in the US and producing around 75% of the world’s eggs from caged layers. With increased urbanization and a mass exodus from rural areas the percentage of those growing their own food has fallen dramatically, boosting demand for eggs and other farm-produced food products. The majority of egg producers in the US are small farm-owning families. As little as two US egg companies are publicly traded entities.


The world egg industry is comprised of almost 5 billion egg-laying hens: close to 1,000 million in China; around 290 million in the EU; over 275 million in the US; almost 130 million in India and 115 million in Mexico. An average laying hen produces in excess of 300 eggs annually. Excluding the EU, the US is the largest egg exporter in the world, and Germany the largest importer.


Key Market Products


  • The world milk market is expected to exceed $146 billion in 2015, a 21% hike in five years, according to MarketLine. By 2015, market volume is expected to reach 110,000 million liters, representing nearly 13% growth in five years. Unflavored fresh liquid milk is the market’s leading segment, at almost 47% of overall market value. Parmalat Finanziaria is the world’s number-one milk producer, with almost 6% market share.


  • The US ice cream industry makes yearly sales worth over $20 billion, reports the International Dairy Foods Association. Around 10% of US milk produced by diary farmers in the US goes into making ice cream. About a third of the yearly milk output in the US goes to making cheese.



Regional Markets


US dairy exports were in excess of $3.6 billion in 2010, representing 65% growth compared with 2009, reports the International Diary Food Association. The dairy export sector still shows room for growth, with less than 15% of overall US milk production sold overseas in 2010. High production costs have proved unfavorable to the US dairy market since 2009.


The Middle East dairy industry is a leader on the global market, fuelled by long-term growth potential, reports Koncept Analytics. China is another market leader, while Japan will see a decline due to high summer temperatures. India remains the number-one dairy leader in terms of production.



Industry Leaders


Major players on the global dairy market include Danone, Nestle, Dean Foods, Fonterra and Unilever. Danone, headquartered in Paris, France, is the leading company in fresh dairy products. The company, which employs over 100,000 people, saw sales rise almost 7% in 2010.


Nestle employs over 250,000 people across more than 510 countries. It is the largest Swiss industrial company and the largest food company in the world. Unilever sells its products in around 180 countries, with a portfolio of over 400 brands. Twelve of Unilever’s brands each generate around $1.5 billion in yearly sales.



Market Outlook


The global dairy industry is fiercely competitive, pushing market leaders to cut costs and boost profit margins. Competition is heightened by a waning supply of retailers across the world. Demand is rising due to economic growth in developing nations and higher incomes coupled with evolving diet patterns, though the industry remains at the mercy of extreme price volatility.


The global butter industry is predicted to expand significantly over the next decade, with the EU, Australia and New Zealand remaining the largest exporters, according to Koncept Analytics. Demand for cheese is also expected to continue climbing, along with whole milk powder demand, which will be fuelled by import demand from New Zealand, Australia and Asia.



Leading Industry Associations



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