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Peanuts are leguminous plants that produce fruits that grow underground. Peanuts are not nuts but are associated with the nuts and dried fruit family because of their similar benefits and energy levels. Peanuts, which originate in South America, are now grown in various parts of the world, although their cultivation requires specific climatic conditionsand a certain type of soil. Thus, peanut cultivation is not widespread in European countries and they are therefore major importers of peanuts. There are different types of peanuts:

  • Runner (dominant type, most used for peanut butter)
  • Virginia (represents the majority of roasted peanuts)
  • Spanish (generally used for sweets)
  • Valencia (very sweet and usually baked)

China and India are the world’s largest consumers of peanuts; in 2018 the two countries accounted for around 56% of global consumption. Meanwhile, Argentina is the largest exporter of peanuts.

Global price (USD per metric ton) in Q4 2019 was 1402.9, which is an increase compared to 1261.5 in Q1 2014. In other words, prices have increased in 5 years. During this period, it should be noted that the commodity demonstrates high levels of volatility. This can be explained by the fact that the industry has shifted towards a market-oriented pricing model, with less government intervention.

Global market players include Olam International, Kraft Foods Inc., and Hampton Farms, Inc, Star Snacks Co., LLC, Virginia Diner, Archer Daniels Midland, Diamond Foods, Inc.

In the UK, sales have increased since 2009. Peanut butter is driving this expansion, but also the perceived health benefits of peanuts. Indeed, it is one of the richest protein sources, as the concentration of protein in a peanut can reach up to 70%. Moreover, organic peanuts are becoming more popular as consumers look to have traceability for the product origin.

The brand market share for peanuts is fragmented, and most of sales come through private labels. KP sold the most in 2017, followed by Walkers and Indus.






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