Shea Butter in Cosmetics – Global Market Analysis, Competitors, Economic Shifts, Demographic Data, Trends and Forecast by 2028

Shea Butter Market: Overview

The shea fruit is a non-timber forest product that is native to the ecosystems of the semi-arid regions of Western Africa. Shea butter (Butyrospermum parkii) is the fat derived from the nuts/kernels of the shea fruit, also known as Vitellaria paradoxa. Shea butter finds use as an alternative to vegetable oil in various applications such as food processing, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and retail.

In terms of value, the global shea butter market is expected to reach a market value of US$ 3,566.1 Mn by the end of 2028, with an expected CAGR of 5.2% over the forecast period.

The key factors driving growth of the shea butter market include the growing demand for cocoa butter alternatives in chocolate and confectioneries, increasing consumption of chocolate and bakery products, rise of product premiumization in the food and beverages industry, and soaring shea butter consumption by cosmetics and personal care products manufacturers.

shea butter market

Global Shea Butter Market: Drivers

Gradually Rising Preference for Shea Butter as a Potential Alternative to Vegetable Oil, over Rather Expensive Cocoa Butter

Cocoa butter is used in chocolates and confectioneries as a fat source, to give the products luster, texture, and snap. The demand for cocoa butter is increasing with the growing demand for chocolates and confectioneries. However, cocoa butter is witnessing supply constraints due to the declining yields of cocoa in major producing countries. Therefore, the price of cocoa butter is increasing rapidly, which is compelling manufacturers of chocolates and confectioneries to opt for other alternatives or equivalents to cocoa butter.

Shea butter is being increasingly used by manufacturers as a potential replacement for the costlier cocoa butter for application in chocolates and confectioneries. Leading manufacturers such as The Hershey Company and Mondel?z International, Inc. are using shea butter as an alternative source of fat to replace cocoa butter.

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Increasing Chocolate Consumption to Fuel the Growth of Shea Butter Market

The consumption of chocolate follows dichotomy in world regions due to its Western origin. While some regions present timid demand for chocolate, growing economies and globalization have increased its consumption in the recent past. Over 50% of chocolate consumption occurs in Europe, and around 20% in the United States.

Asian countries are emerging as significant chocolate consumers due to changing socio-economic demographics. The growing demand for chocolate is fuelling the demand for fat sources such as shea butter. Shea butter is used to provide and enhance the texture, consistency, and other properties of chocolate, and thus, is anticipated to witness proliferating demand with the ever-growing chocolate market.

Growing Application of Shea Butter in the Bakery Industry Is a Strong Booster

Shea butter is used as a raw material for margarine and shortening for the manufacturing of several bakery products such as dough, puff pastries, croissants, and others. Margarine is nothing but a copy of butter made from vegetable oil and water.

The production of margarine requires solid fats. Hence, manufacturers have used the process of hydrogenation to harden vegetable oil. However, the hydrogenation of vegetable oil results in the generation of trans unsaturated fatty acids, which have a negative impact on cardiovascular health. This is pushing manufacturers towards using shea butter for the processing of margarines and shortenings.

Shea butter is stable solid at room temperature, and hence, it eliminates the need for hydrogenation, and also prevents the generations of trans unsaturated fatty acids. Thus, it is a healthy alternative for margarine production and for application in the bakery industry. Hence, the growing bakery industry is expected to boost the demand for shea butter.

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Growing Premiumization of Food and Beverage Products Fuelling the Demand for Shea Butter

Urbanization and modernization in emerging economies have strengthened the food and beverage industry. The concept of ‘premiumization’ has caught on in the food and beverage industry, ranging beyond pricing to include far-fetched quality and a superior experience. Premiumization has driven consumer taste for high quality and value-added products with good superiority ingredients that promise enhanced health benefits.

Consumers are ready to pay a premium price for products offering perceptible health benefits – the only criterion being the potential of a unique offering that meets their basic dietary and health needs. Premiumization is leading to the growing demand for bakery and confectionery products, and thus, is proliferating the growth of the shea butter market. Besides, manufacturers are turning towards shea butter with the aim of provide consumers with better quality ingredients and products.

Growing Demand for Cosmetics and Personal Care Products is Assisting Growth of Shea Butter Market

Cosmetic companies have begun to harness the power of shea butter to bring a level of diversification in the largely staid cosmetics industry. Growing consumer consciousness regarding the use of products that provide multiple benefits and nourishing qualities to attain the perfect skin and body is boosting the demand for shea butter in the cosmetics and personal care industry.

Shea butter is used in skin care, hair care, color cosmetics, baby oil, lotions, and other products due to its multiple functionalities. Shea butter acts as bioactive, emollient, and surfactant in various cosmetics and personal care products. Through continuous research and development, manufacturers of cosmetics and personal care products are trying to capture the skincare industry with the introduction of new products containing shea butter.

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Rising Incorporation of Improved Anti-aging Ingredients into Cosmetics Is Paving the Way for High Shea Butter Sales

The increasing aging population continues to push up the demand for anti-aging products. Besides, the growing demographic of individuals longing for better appearance is expected to drive the growth of the anti-aging cream and ingredient sector. Unrefined shea butter is used as a prominent ingredient in anti-aging creams due its moisturizing and skin healing properties.

Shea butter heals skin conditions such as wrinkles, blemishes, acne, and eczema, and makes the skin smooth and lustrous. Besides, it is used to prevent dark spots and sagging skin, making it a vital ingredient for anti-aging creams. Hence, the growing demand for premium skin conditioning and anti-aging products is anticipated to bolster the demand for shea butter.

Rapidly Progressing Online Retail to Push Prominence of Shea Butter in Cosmetics

Online retail is credited with the easy availability of cosmetic shea butter products such as lotions, creams, hair care products, and others, along with the ease of comparing the prices of various cosmetic products on the same platform. This is resulting in the easy access of shea butter among consumers. In addition, the increasing market penetration of shea butter products through online-based retailing is expected to fuel the growth of the shea butter cosmetic products sector.