Saturday, December 16, 2017

Purchases of baby diapers drop by 5% since 2013

By on August 13, 2017

Editor’s note: The following article originally appeared in the August 10 print edition of Caribbean Business.

SAN JUAN — According to results from Gaither International’s Media Brand Profiles (MBP) survey, 9% of respondents interviewed so far in 2017 said they had purchased baby diapers in the past 30 days.

This category’s purchase incidence has been in decline for several years, having dropped by 5 percentage points, while it started at 14% during 2013.

“This drop in incidence is likely a direct result of the drop in the young population of the island. We are seeing more deaths than births in Puerto Rico and the population is increasingly aging. In combination with the migration of Puerto Ricans [to the U.S. mainland], it is no surprise that categories specific to younger age segments will have experienced reductions,” said Melanie Dederick, a client service associate at Gaither International.

The top brands currently being purchased for this category are (in order): Huggies, Luvs and Pampers.

“It is curious to note how, in Puerto Rican culture, it has been fairly common to hear diapers being referred to as ‘pampers’ in regular conversation for many years, even though Pampers is currently in the third position in terms of market share,” Dederick said.

When asked where they purchased this product, the top-four mentions were: big chain supermarkets (49%), mass merchandisers (23%), pharmacies (18%) and club stores (13%).

When looking at the purchase incidence among demographic segments, it comes as no surprise that the incidence is highest among those ages 18 to 34, and it is also largely overrepresented among the female gender and the Middle-Low lifestyle tier, Gaither reported.

The birth rate in Puerto Rico has dropped significantly in recent years. The island’s birth rate in 2000 was 2.05 births per woman; in 2010 it was 1.62; and in 2015 it was 1.43 births per woman, according to the World Bank birth rate index of various countries and jurisdictions, using official government data.

School enrollment also continues to decline. As of July 24, the Education Department had 291,757 students enrolled—well below the agency’s projections of 360,000 students for the new school year.

Meanwhile, Puerto Rico’s continuing economic stagnation has led to thousands of people migrating stateside to look for better opportunities.

As a result, the island’s population has dropped from 3.8 million in 2010 to 3.4 million today, and the Planning Board estimates that if these trends continue, Puerto Rico’s population could fall below the 3 million mark by 2027.

Gaither’s MBP tracking survey interviews about 500 people weekly from among a representative sample of the island’s population ages 12 and older.

–Polling is conducted by Gaither International and results are reported exclusively by Caribbean Business.

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