In Turkey, 160 babies are born every hour, 1.4 million in a year. There are four million babies between the ages of 0 and 3. To put it another way, Turkey has a large population of babies. But consumption is low. Per capita consumption of baby food in Turkey is 9.5 kilos. The global average is 60 kilos. When the diaper penetration rate catches up with Europe, the market will double in size. Many foreign companies, such as Numil, Nestle, P & G, Kimberly-Clark, Mustela, Chicco and Mothercare are captivated by these figures and potential.
Becoming a parent is undoubtedly one of the most wonderful feelings in the world, but it is also so expensive. A family who are expecting a baby spend an average of YTL 4,000 over the nine month waiting period in visits to the doctor, tests and medicine.
1.4 million babies are born in Turkey every year. Such a high birth rate creates a significant market. Research has shown that, during the first two years of its life, families in Turkey spend an average of US$60 a month and US$720 a year on each baby. The fact that, over the last four years, the turnover in all of the sub-sectors in the baby goods markets has doubled is evidence of its potential. The market for expenditure on babies and children has today reached YTL 4 billion. A boom is expected in games, baby strollers and equipment and in clothing.
But all of the players target people in the middle and high income categories. For this reason, the competition in areas such as baby food, diapers and skincare is becoming increasingly intense.
In fact, baby food is the fastest growing section of the baby products market. The market has grown by 23 percent a year for the last six years. There is still more to come. Because only 20 percent of households with a child in the 0-3 age range buy baby food for baby bottles and 25 percent baby food for spoon feeding.
Even if it is possible to see a lot of baby foods on the market, five brands account for 97 percent of sales. They are Milupa, Bebelac, Ülker Hero Baby, SMA and Nestle. Nielsen estimated that in 2008 the baby food market was worth TL 240 million, while the market players put it at YTL 300 million.
The item which imposes the highest burden on baby budgets is diapers. Research suggests that 84 percent of families in Turkey prefer disposable diapers. In the last five years there has been a 160 percent increase in terms of turnover and a 115 percent growth in the number of diapers sold.