Global overview of the candle market. Challenges and advantages with a forecast to 2027 – Fabiany A Muniz Lebolo

The candle market closed in 2020 with $7.5 Billion dollars and is supposed to grow up to$ 12.41 Billion US in sales at a CAGR of 8.2% between the period of 2021 and 2027.1 During the last two years, North America and Europe together accounted for more than 65% of candle consumption in the market. In both regions, candles are considered as decorative and air freshener elements rather than seen as a functional product.

A contributing factor to the sales growth is the inclusion and availability of this product in multiple distribution and sales channels ranging from markets, wholesale, hypermarkets and supermarkets, bazaars, gift shops, botanical shops or herbalists, interior decoration stores, hotels, online shopping, catalog sales etc. Brands such as Yankee and Villa Hermanos have ventured to open specialized boutique-type stores for their products, creating a “life style” experience.2. An outstanding factor for this growth is that consumers are increasing their candle buying habits, either as additions to their decorative elements or because of their functionality, such as aromatherapy and its benefits in reducing stress and relaxation. We are observing an unprecedented demand in the market for scented candles since 2020 which is much higher than that of unscented candles. Another interesting fact is that 70% of purchases of these candles are made by women. Candles have aroused a greater shopping interest for reasons other than its aromatic purposes. This is how candles with  odor-eliminating properties, cigarette odor maskers, pet odors, insect repellant for the garden, holistic candles, healing candles, and spa, among other innovations become the focal point for this 70% of shoppers. 93% of U.S. consumers make candle and air care purchase decisions based on fragrance, 62% of candle purchases are attributed to trying new fragrance scents, and 73% wish more premium scents were offered at a massive price. 3. In Latin America the mass market candles are still purchased for religious context or merely for their lighting function. 80% of the candles produced in Colombia are produced for the esoteric and religious market. Following in importance with a 15% are the candles that simply serve to provide light in the absence of electricity, and the decorative ones, which may represent the remaining share.4 On the other hand, in Mexico, Covid-19 increased the demand for religious candles by 50% in the first eight months of 2021 and caused an increase of 2.3 times more compared to the same period of 2019/20, and reached a value of $3,656,000 million pesos (MX) as of August 2021, the amount was $1,213,000 million pesos (MX) more than in 2020. In 2021. The month of August, more than 465.1 million candles, paraffin candles and candlesticks with and without glass containers had already been sold, 23.3% more than the 377 in the year 2020. At Veladoras de México (Velmex) for example, the holiday Day of the Dead contributes to 35% of their annual sales.5 In Latin America there is a significant increase in micro  companies positioning aromatic candle entrepreneurial projects and large air freshener companies including scented candles as brand extensions in their lines. According to the report from Financiero México, business executives like Ernesto de la Teja affirm “there is a market opportunity with aromatic products whose demand grows 20% month after month.” In the same report Nelly Velázquez, founder of Velas Gaia, an SME company established two years ago said: “Aromatherapy is currently highlighted in our candles, because of the level of stress that people carry.” As for the most sold type of candles, container candles; scented and unscented, continue to account for the largest share of the global candle market. Since 2018 they have been representing almost 25% of the revenue share in the global candle market, followed by pillar candles and tapers with a market share of 17.2% and 11.9%, respectively.6 Unscented votive candles are also known as prayer candles and are the most common type of candle used in all scenarios. If we continue filtering the preferences in candles, we can say that; although the greatest consumption of candles is made of those made mostly of paraffin, the consumption and preference for natural waxes or the incorporation of these in mixtures with paraffin is rapidly increasing.  The trend for natural and organic candles will continue to increase and will soon shorten the difference in preference of purchase habit with paraffin. This is related to a phenomenon called non-carbon blackening. More and more people feel committed to minimizing the impact of CO2 emitting elements, and this will increase the demand for candles made from vegetable waxes. In addition, Millennials are the demographic group that will command candle purchases in the period of these studies. These are the most committed to eliminating carbon gas emissions from the planet. 7. The volatility in the prices of raw materials is the main factor that hinders the growth of the market. Paraffin remains the most widely used base material for candle production. Meanwhile, in 2014 and 2015, nearly 33% of paraffin production in some countries was shut down; forcing candlemakers to import large volumes of base material at higher prices.  

  1. Global Candle Market: Industry Analysis and Forecast (2021-2027) by Type, Raw Material, Distribution Channel, and Region. Maximize Market Research PVT 2021.
  2. Candles Market By Type, By Distribution Channels, Growth, Share, Opportunities & Competitive Analysis, 2019 – 2027 CREDENCE RESERACH 2020
  4. Las velas no solo sirven para alumbrar, también están en el mercado de la decoración. Revista Portafolio Colombia
  5. Coronavirus impulsa en 50% la venta de cirios y veladoras. El Financiero Mexico.
  6. Verify Market Research
  7. Fifth year of 3M and Ipsos global survey reveals Americans want science to help solve for sustainability, health and STEM equity challenges. News Direct 3M

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