Global Popcorn to Reach $18.82 Billion Valuation by 2031

The subcategory’s growth is fueled by ready-to-eat varieties.

April 18, 2022

Popcorn in a bowl

PORTLAND, Ore.—The global popcorn industry was valued at $9.86 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach $18.8 billion by 2031, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.3% from 2022 to 2031, according to a report by Allied Market Research.

“Busy and hectic [consumer] lifestyles, a surge in inclination toward ready-to-eat convenient food over traditional meals and growing health awareness have boosted the growth of the global popcorn market,” states the report.

Although popcorn consumption at public events, such as movie theaters, fairs and carnivals, decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for microwave popcorn increased during the pandemic as people saw it as a comfort food during the lockdown period.

The household segment made up most of the global popcorn market, accounting for more than two-thirds, due to a surge in availability of ready-to-cook popcorns. However, the commercial segment is projected to portray the highest CAGR of 6.1% during the forecast period because of increased demand for popcorn at commercial spaces.

By type, the ready-to-eat segment is anticipated to register the highest CAGR of 5.6% from 2022 to 2031.

By region, the global popcorn market across North America held the largest share in 2020, accounting for nearly three-fifths of the market, owing to high demand for popcorn from household and commercial spaces and a surge in demand for on-the-go and ready-to-eat popcorn in the U.S. However, the market across Asia-Pacific is anticipated to register the highest CAGR of 6.5% during the forecast period, due to increase in demand for popcorns at theatres, households and other commercial spaces.

Ready-to-eat popcorn is part of the salty snacks category, contributing 3.2% of category sales and average gross margin of 37.93% in 2020, NACS Magazine reports. Better-for-you products continue to make inroads in the salty snacks category. “We’re seeing BFY products, including SkinnyPop, driving growth through velocities and distribution,” Mark Chu, director of marketing for Amplify Snack Brands, which produces the SkinnyPop and Pirate’s Booty labels, told NACS Magazine in the February category close-up on salty snacks.

NACS offers category management training courses for category managers, as well as foodservice employees.