The retail analytics firm's fifth annual Brand Footprint study, which ranks the most-chosen global FMCG brands based on research from 73% of the global population across five continents, found that emerging markets spent $34bn more in 2016 than 2015, representing an increase of 6%.
With more developed markets flat year on year, emerging markets were responsible for all of the FMCG growth in 2016. Top-performing markets included Russia, which was up 14%; Sri Lanka, up 9%; Indonesia and the Philippines, which both grew 6%.
Overall, developed markets saw a slump in growth, with the US flat at 0%, down from 1% growth in 2015. Europe's growth fell from 4% in 2015 to 2% in 2016. However, Asia saw the largest continental slowdown, falling from 6% growth in 2015 to just 2% in 2016.
Despite slowing growth on groceries globally (from 4% to 3%), the results showed distinct regional variations.
Both Africa and the Middle East grew 8% in value, just behind Latin America, which saw a 9% year on year spending increase, though this was spurred by ballooning inflation.
At the level of brands, Coca-Cola remained the most chosen brand globally for the fifth year in a row. Colgate, the toothpaste brand, was the second most chosen brand – and the only brand chosen by more than half of the global population (62.4%).
"Being chosen by more people, more often, is how a brand grows," said Josep Montserrat, Global CEO at Kantar Worldpanel. Furthermore, he continued, understanding each brand's growth opportunities was more vital than ever.
"Understanding where to find the most valuable opportunities – whether from an emerging region with a growing population, or innovating to meet untapped needs in a more developed market – is critical for all brands."
A deeper trend within the data showed local brands overtaking global brands' growth, notably in food, where local brands accounted for 74% of purchases, and beverages, where 67% of purchases were of local brands.
Data sourced from Kantar Worldpanel; additional content by WARC staff