The study opines that manufacturers’ efforts towards offering comfortable breastfeeding experience to the working women with sore and sensitive nipples has been complementing the development and adoption of breast shells. Effectiveness of breast shells, to offer protection against friction against clothes and prevent rashes, has been advocating their use among women who immediately resume their work post-delivery. The study opines that presence of a relatively conservative demographic in developing economies, where open communication breastfeeding accessories is frowned upon to a certain extent, continues to remain a key growth hindrance for the breast shell market.
Global breast shell market registered a value CAGR of over 5% during the period 2013 to 2018. Increasing awareness of benefits associated with breastfeeding accessories among consumers has underpinned growth of the breast shell industry.
Worldwide sales of breast shells were upward of US$ 130 Mn in 2018, and are estimated to record a Y-o-Y growth of over 6% in 2019.
North America continues to be the leading market for breast shell, attributed to the growing consumer inclination towards technology-driven solutions for breast milk collection or breastfeeding.
Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (APEJ) is expected to be the high-growth market for breast shell, on the back of rapid rise in number of working mothers in the emerging economies
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What are the Key Growth Drivers of Breast Shell Market?
Growing focus on innovative product developments associated with breastfeeding, for women who have a hard, low milk supply and those suffering from cracked or sore nipples, has been influencing the demand for breast shell.
Increasing number of working women across the globe has been directly impacting the sales of breast shells. Working mothers are relying on technologically-advanced solutions for breastfeeding, on the account of busier lifestyles and haste to rejoin work post maternity, which in turn will continue to bode well for growth of the breast shell market.
Adoption of breast shells also remains significant among women who have experienced engorgement outside of the immediate postpartum period, which can lead to mastitis, plugged ducts, and even abscesses. Additionally, demand for breast shells among women with engorgement is also sustained by their benefits such as prevention of pain and irritation.
Apart from facilitating breast milk collection, key benefits linked with breast shells, including the protection of sore and cracked nipples from friction against breastfeeding clothes, continue to advocate their use among consumers.
Several awareness campaigns conducted by international agencies, regarding benefits of human milk and breastfeeding, is another significant influential aspect favoring growth of the breast shell market.
Opportunities are imminent in the breast shell market, as key manufactures shift their focus towards offering innovative products, with added benefits such as superior comfort, natural appearance under clothes, and easy to clean.
What are Key Challenges Faced by Breast Shell Market Players?
Growing popularity and acceptance of breast milk alternatives, such as infant formulas, along with appealing marketing campaigns carried out by manufactures of these products, may pose as a potential threat to expansion of the breast shell market. However, adoption and implementation of policies such as International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes, to protect and promote breastfeeding, will continue to favor sales of breast shell as a consequence.
Consumers, particularly in the developing and low-income countries, lack knowledge regarding breastfeeding products and accessories. This, coupled with several aspects of social stigma and cultural perception towards breastfeeding, may impede growth of the breast shell market.
Breast Shell Market – Competitive Landscape
In April 2019, Medela LLC, a key player in the breast shell market, announced that it has entered into a partnership with Mamava, the inventors of the first lactation pod, to support employers to provide the infrastructure, product, and services for breastfeeding working women.
In May 2018, Ameda revealed the expansion of its premium products line including Ameda MoistureGuard™ Premium Nursing Pads, Ameda PumpEase® Hands-Free Pumping Bra, and Ameda Triple Zero Lanolin™ to support breastfeeding and breast pumping needs for mothers.
Founded in 1957, Pigeon Corporation, formerly known as Pigeon Honyuki Honpo Corporation, is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. The company specializes in manufacturing, sales, imports, and exports of baby and child-care products, women’s care products, maternity items, elder care products, and home healthcare products.
Established in 1891, Philips is based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and operates as a health technology company worldwide. The company operates through three main segments including Diagnosis & Treatment, Connected Care & Health Informatics, and Personal Health, and offers a range of mother, child-care, and oral healthcare products.
Founded in 1970, Pharmics, Inc. is headquartered in Utah, the USA, and provides quality pharmaceutical nutritional products to Pediatric, Obstetric, and Bariatric markets. The company believes in providing products that are better tolerated for better results.
Medline Industries, Inc.
Founded in 1966, Medline Industries, Inc. is based in Illinois, the USA with manufacturing units in North America. The company manufactures and distributes health supplies, and offers pharmaceuticals and nutrition, nursing and patient care, infection prevention, and incontinence care products.
Established in 1946, Artsana Group is headquartered in Grandate, Italy with production facilities in Europe. The company manufactures and distributes baby care, health care, and medical products along with cosmetic and hygiene products.
Consumers have been showing a marked preference for silicone breast shells, in light of their greater comfort and easy adaptation to distinct breast contours. The study finds that silicone breast shells accounted for over 7 in 10 sales in 2018, and will continue to remain the top-selling category. Additionally, presence of pores small enough to aid ventilation while refraining leakage is another key attribute of silicone breast shells that have been driving their preference among consumers. According to the study, pharmacy/drug stores continue to account for relatively larger sales of breast shell, with nearly 50% share in 2018. Gains also remain significant from modern trade and online channels, which collectively account for over 40% market share.
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