Market Research - Food Packing

Market Research Report: Packaging Food Products in MENA Region | Insights & Trends
May 25, 2024 by
Ur-Serv Business Development Team

Market Research Report: Packaging Food Products in MENA Region


The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region have witnessed a significant increase in the demand for packaged food products in recent years.

This trend can be attributed to several factors, including urbanization, changing dietary habits, increasing disposable income, and a growing preference for convenience.

In this market research report, we will dive into the dynamics of packaging food products in the MENA region, exploring market trends, growth drivers, challenges, and opportunities.

Market Overview

Here is a concise summary of the key points about the food packaging market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, based on the provided search results:

According to recent industry reports, The MENA food packaging market is growing, with a projected CAGR of over 3% from 2023-2028 [3]. 

The market was valued at $11,889.34 million in 2022 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.92% from 2023-2030 [5].

The MENA packaged food market has been experiencing steady growth, driven by the rising demand for convenience foods, snacks, and ready-to-eat meals. 

This growth can be attributed to the increasing urbanization, busy lifestyles, and the influence of Western dietary patterns.

Market Segmentation

By Packaging Type

Packaging plays a crucial role in preserving the quality and freshness of food products while also serving as a means of branding and marketing.

In the MENA region, packaging for food products can be segmented into several types, including:

- Flexible Packaging

Flexible packaging, such as pouches and bags, is gaining popularity in the MENA region due to its convenience and cost-effectiveness.

It offers advantages such as lightweight, easy storage, and extended shelf life, making it suitable for a wide range of food products, including snacks, confectionery, and beverages.

- Rigid Packaging

Rigid packaging, including containers, trays, and cartons, remains a dominant choice for certain food categories in the MENA region. 

It provides durability, protection, and enhanced aesthetics, making it ideal for products like dairy, bakery, and frozen foods.

Key trends and insights:

Flexible packaging is the most commonly used packaging type in the MENA food market, followed by rigid plastics, paper & board, rigid metal, and glass[3].

The bag/sachet pack type was the most used in the MENA food market in 2023[3].

By Product Category

The packaged food market in the MENA region can be further segmented based on product categories, including:

- Snacks and Convenience Foods

Snack foods, including chips, nuts, and confectionery, are witnessing robust demand in the MENA region due to changing consumer preferences and increasing snacking occasions.

Convenience foods such as ready-to-eat meals, instant noodles, and microwavable snacks are also gaining traction among busy urban consumers.

- Dairy and Bakery Products

Dairy and bakery products continue to be staples in the MENA diet, with a growing preference for packaged variants that offer convenience and longer shelf life. 

Yogurts, cheeses, bread, and pastries are among the popular packaged dairy and bakery items in the region.

Growth Drivers

Urbanization and Changing Lifestyles

The rapid urbanization and changing lifestyles in the MENA region have led to an increased demand for packaged food products. 

Urban consumers, with busy schedules and limited time for meal preparation, are turning to convenient and ready-to-eat options available in attractive packaging.

Increasing Disposable Income

The growing affluence in the MENA region has resulted in higher disposable incomes, allowing consumers to spend more on convenience foods and premium packaged products. 

As consumers seek healthier and higher-quality food options, they are willing to pay a premium for well-packaged products that offer superior taste, freshness, and convenience.

Retail Expansion and Modernization

The expansion and modernization of retail channels, including supermarkets, hypermarkets, convenience stores, and online platforms, have contributed to the growth of the packaged food market in the MENA region. 

These modern retail formats offer a wide variety of packaged food products, coupled with promotional activities and discounts, driving consumer purchasing behavior.

Challenges and Opportunities

Regulatory Compliance

One of the key challenges facing packaged food manufacturers in the MENA region is regulatory compliance, including labeling requirements, food safety standards, and packaging regulations. 

Adhering to these regulations can be complex and costly, particularly for multinational companies operating across multiple markets with varying requirements.

Sustainability Concerns

With increasing environmental awareness, consumers in the MENA region are becoming more conscious of the environmental impact of packaging materials.

 There is a growing demand for sustainable packaging solutions, including recyclable, biodegradable, and compostable options, presenting an opportunity for innovative manufacturers to capitalize on this trend.

Key trends and insights:

- The UAE is expected to dominate the MENA eco-friendly packaging market in 2022 due to high demand for fast-moving consumer goods and increasing consumer preference for green packaging[4].

- Paper & paperboard is the leading material type for eco-friendly packaging in the MENA region, as it is 100% naturally degradable with low environmental impact[4].

- The food segment is expected to dominate the MENA eco-friendly packaging market in 2022 due to the fast-growing food industry and increasing use of eco-friendly disposable packaging[4].

Market Fragmentation

The MENA packaged food market is characterized by market fragmentation, with a multitude of local and international players competing for market share across various product categories. 

Major players in the MENA food packaging market include Almarai, Nestlé, PepsiCo, Enterprise Foods, and Solico Group[3].

This intense competition poses challenges for both established and new entrants, requiring strategic differentiation, innovation, and marketing efforts to stand out in the crowded marketplace.


In summary, the MENA food packaging market is experiencing significant growth, driven by increasing demand for fast-moving consumer goods, consumer preference for eco-friendly packaging, and the presence of major players in the region.

Flexible packaging, paper & paperboard, and the food segment are the key trends shaping the market.

However, companies must navigate challenges such as regulatory compliance, sustainability concerns, and market fragmentation to capitalize on these opportunities successfully. 

By understanding consumer preferences, investing in innovative packaging solutions, and leveraging distribution channels effectively, companies can position themselves for growth and success in the dynamic MENA packaged food market.

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Ur-Serv Business Development Team May 25, 2024
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