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Wagyu Beef Market Size, Share & Industry Analysis, By Type (Fullblood, Purebred, and Crossbred), By Distribution Channel (Foodservice, Offline Retail, and Online Retail), and Regional Forecast, 2024-2032

Last Updated: May 06, 2024 | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI106905

 

KEY MARKET INSIGHTS

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The global wagyu beef market size was at USD 23.94 billion in 2023 and is projected to grow with the value increase from USD 25.34 billion in 2024 to USD 42.69 billion by 2032, exhibiting a CAGR of 6.74% during the forecast period.


Wagyu beef is a premium beef cut available in the market, which is explicitly developed from cattle breeds found in Japan, such as Japanese Black, Japanese Brown, Japanese Polled, and Japanese Shorthorn. The geographic isolation of Japan and the regional climatic temperature helped it to develop unique cattle strains. This unique genetic composition helped them develop intra-muscular fat, giving the beef a unique taste not found in other cattle breeds.


Apart from its unique taste and appearance, wagyu beef is also considered beneficial for the body. This beef is rich in conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and is considered healthy compared to other beef products. Furthermore, different meat varieties need to be hung to age and tenderize the muscles. On the other hand, this meat is made up of intramuscular fat, making it naturally lean and tender, eliminating the need for hanging. These factors make the meat cuts more palatable.


The COVID-19 pandemic has a significantly negative impact on the sales and production of wagyu beef. Japan, one of the largest manufacturers of Wagyu meat, and as the country was significantly impacted during the pandemic with summer Olympics being postponed, the global supply chain saw a disruption with restriction on exports and lowered demand and consumption than anticipated quantity in accordance with Olympics.


Furthermore, with the rapid spread of virus the government imposed strict restrictions on public gatherings and ordered public places to be closed during the initial phases of the pandemic. Hence, restaurants and hotels, major channels for Wagyu sales, were closed. Fine dining restaurants, steakhouses, and other hotels ordered this beef meat in large volumes for their consumers, but sales through these channels plummeted due to government restrictions. This was one the significant factor which negatively impact the consumption during the pandemic.


In addition, the cost of wagyu post pandemic saw a rapid growth which owing to the increase in cost of production an maintaining the ample stock stored due to the oversupply during the initial phase of pandemic as the auxiliary materials crucial for beef production and maintaining a steady meat supply were also significantly impacted during the pandemic.


Wagyu Beef Market Trends


Growing Prevalence of Exotic Meals and Online Sales of Meat to Fuel Market Growth


In recent times, there has been a surge in global consumer demand for exotic meals and food products. This increase can be attributed to the widespread influence of social media and increased disposable income in developing countries, which contributed significantly to the increasing demand for exotic and premium meals.


In addition, the post-pandemic era has witnessed significant development in the e-commerce channel, offering higher convenience and facilitating the global expansion of meat and other products. Manufacturers are conveniently expanding their reach in new and different geographies to cater to the increasing demand for exotic meat products.


For instance, in February 2023, Morgan Brook Farm, a U.S.-based Wagyu beef manufacturer, announced the launch of its online sales platform, which will allow its customers to order meat online. Thus, with this launch, the manufacturer is looking for expansion in the country with a developed business model of farm-to-table or direct-to-consumer owing to the increasing demand for premium quality meat.


Furthermore, the increase in online food delivery services with new advancements such as 30-minute delivery and other executive services provided by food delivery service providers has been one of the significant trends driving the market in the U.S., Australia, China, Japan, and other countries.


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Wagyu Beef Market Growth Factors


Rising Demand for Animal Protein among Health Conscious Consumers to Propel Market Growth


Rapid global urbanization and an increase in the number of people getting employed in the formal sector are significant factors contributing to the growth of disposable income in the population. Furthermore, changes in consumers' dietary patterns, especially in China and Indonesia, have influenced animal protein consumption, leading to a rapid increase in the demand for beef products in such markets.


The overall increase in protein consumption has positively impacted the demand for premium beef cuts globally. A significant number of consumers are willing to spend their income on products that have health benefits, resulting in an increased demand for premium products.


It is known for its health benefits, unique taste, and appealing features, and is gaining popularity. It is healthier compared to regular beef products, making it suitable for consumers who are health conscious. The LDL content in Japanese beef is low due to high levels of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. This also makes it favorable among consumers who prefer tasty and healthy meat. Hence, despite its premium price, consumer demand for products such as wagyu beef tallow, wagyu ground beef recipe, wagyu beef arby's, wagyu beef carpaccio, and wagyu beef patties has gradually increased. This rising demand is a key driver fueling the Wagyu beef market growth.


Increased Trade Activities Among Countries to Promote the Sales of Product Globally


In recent years, manufacturing countries have entered into a trade agreement with major beef-consuming countries, facilitating expanded market access. Such trade agreements help manufacturing countries to tap into new markets and bolster their market presence. For instance, Japan entered into a trade agreement with the U.S. where a low tariff quota was placed on the Wagyu meat imported to the U.S. from Japan. Such tariff quotas help to boost Japanese breed beef exports from Japan to the U.S.


Manufacturing companies are exploring various product distribution channels, such as online portals, to reach out to their consumers directly. For instance, the Wagyu shop offers consumers the convenience of purchasing a variety of meat cuts online, significantly broadening the avenues for consumers to access these products. Hence, the sales of such beef have increased significantly in recent years.


RESTRAINING FACTORS


Strict Regulatory Policies and High Price of Wagyu Beef to Restrain Market Growth


Governments across the world adopt strong regulatory policies to ensure that the standard and quality of beef are maintained. The majority of fullblood Wagyu is generated from the Japanese cattle breed, a difficult lineage that is challenging for other countries to replicate. Furthermore, the Japanese government has imposed substantial restrictions on exporting cattle to other countries, making it difficult for other countries to replicate the cattle breed. This makes it difficult for meat manufacturers to develop Wagyu beef on a large-scale basis.


The price of Wagyu beef is higher than regular beef cuts, making them expensive for people to purchase such products. Economic crises and impending global recession play a crucial role in influencing the purchasing behavior of consumers. Therefore, retail sales of Wagyu beef can be significantly impacted, potentially leading to a slowdown in market growth during periods of under economic uncertainty.


Wagyu Beef Market Segmentation Analysis


By Type Analysis


Fullblood Wagyu Dominated the Market Owing to its Premium Market Price


Based on type, the market is divided into fullblood, purebred, and cross bred.


Among these, the fullblood segment held a higher market share than other breed types. Fullblood Wagyu refers to cattle that are 100% bred with Wagyu cattle and have not been crossed with any other cattle breed. Purebred wagyu cattle refers to cattle that contain 93.75% of Wagyu cattle DNA and cross bred Wagyu is derived by crossing male Wagyu with Angus cattle.


Fullblood products are the most sought-after meat among the different varieties and hold premium market prices compared to other Wagyu varieties.


Apart from Fullblood Wagyu, the share of cross bred Wagyu is also expected to increase significantly in the future as several countries are trying to develop their flavor of Wagyu by crossing Wagyu cattle with their indigenous cattle variety.


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By Distribution Channel Analysis


Foodservice Channels Segment Dominates Due to High Volume Sales of Products Through This Segment


Based on distribution channel, the market is fragmented into foodservice, online retail and offline retail.


A significant proportion of Wagyu beef is sold through foodservice channels such as restaurants, steakhouses, and hotels, among others. Fine dining restaurants launch new products specifically suited to the needs of consumers who are looking to enjoy premium beef products. Therefore, Wagyu manufacturers sell these products in bulk quantities through the foodservice channel, accounting for the highest market share in the distribution channel.


The COVID-19 pandemic significantly influenced the purchasing behavior of the consumers, with more consumers opting to purchase products through supermarkets and online portals. Certain segment of consumers is looking forward to enjoying restaurant-like meals from the comforts of their home. Hence, the sales of through retail channels including online retail and offline retail are expected to increase significantly in the future.


Among these retail channels, the online channels are expected to register highest growth during the forecast period as they allow consumers to purchase high-quality products from the farms directly. Some of the consumers in the U.S. and Europe are also able to directly import beef from Japan and prepare home cooked meals using these beef cuts.


REGIONAL INSIGHTS


Based on geography, the market is categorized into Europe, North America, Asia Pacific, South America, and the Middle East & Africa.


Asia Pacific Wagyu Beef Market Size, 2023 (USD Billion)

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Asia Pacific region dominated the global wagyu beef market, in terms of value. Asia Pacific is one of the largest regions for beef production globally, with major contributors including Japan and Australia. Apart from the prominent producers, China, Australia, and Japan are major consumers of this beef globally. Japan is one of the largest producers of wagyu in the world and has designated beef as its national treasure. Hence, to maintain its exclusivity, the country has banned the export of live animals from Japan to other countries. Moreover, to maintain its exclusivity, the country has implemented stringent policies and guidelines to maintain product quality.


China is one of the major consumers and imports a significant portion of its beef from Australia and Japan. For instance, a Wagyu beef cut from Australia takes around 15 days to reach the refrigeration cabinets of China. The growing demand has led to the establishment of new retail shops in Beijing, offering a wide range of Australian beef products. As the product is not readily available in the Chinese market, it has to invest significant revenue to improve its cold chain logistics to ensure that the beef remains fresh and fit for consumption.


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North America is primarily driven by rising consumer awareness about the product and the increasing willingness of consumers in the U.S. to pay premium price for heavily marbled and good-quality meat. Increasing awareness regarding the consumption of these products and related health benefits are key factors expected to drive the market's growth. Wagyu cattle deposit a high percentage of unsaturated fat compared to other beef and are rich in omega-3 and omega-6, essential fatty acids.


Moreover, Canada's producer-led Verified Beef Production program provides customer assurance of food safety at the farm and feedlot levels. Therefore, consumers are more inclined toward such products, which will increase sales of these products in the upcoming times. Certain companies are adopting stricter regulatory standards to improve the production of such products and compete with other regional players. For instance, the U.S.-based Vermont Wagyu company has stricter standards and higher quality than most domestic beef breeding programs.


The overall beef consumption in Europe is impacted by the industry's environmental, economic, and societal impact. These factors are interconnected and play a crucial role in European beef consumers' purchasing patterns. Furthermore, beef consumption in the region has declined by 1-2% from 2021 to 2023, as per USDA data. Despite the declining demand for beef, the demand for lean and additive-free meat among consumers is stable and expected to grow. Consumers have become more conscious about their food choices and are willing to pay a high price for premium food items. Therefore, there is a significant growth opportunity for the manufacturers in Europe.


Major exporting countries such as Japan are continuously collaborating with European partners to increase consumer acceptance. Europe also signed a free trade agreement with the significant beef manufacturers in Japan to allow the import of expensive beef into the market. This has helped to reduce the 30% import duty levied on the products; instead, zero taxes are levied on these meats. This is a major opportunity for manufacturers to expand their regional presence. In the early 1990s, the beef industry suffered from Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) disease, which eroded consumer trust in beef products and negatively impacted the market’s growth. Hence, to ensure that beef products are safe for consumption, strong regulatory policies have been adopted that aim to ensure that bovine meat is safe for consumption. 


South America is witnessing an increasing demand for the product due to evolving dietary preferences, particularly among consumers seeking innovative, healthy, and premium meat products. . As restaurants experiment with new dishes, demand for this beef in the market is increasing, and beef manufacturing companies are looking to offer consumers innovative, delicious, and healthier dishes. For instance, Japan exports them to South America and hopes its premium cuts will become as famous as dishes such as sushi and ramen.


The climatic conditions of South America make it difficult to rear cattle, and it is a challenge for manufacturers as breeding the Wagyu breed with domestic cattle results in low reproductive success, making it difficult to produce these premium beef cuts in the region. Wagyu cattle embryo transfer provides a potential means by which Wagyu cattle can rapidly increase breeding and genetic improvement at a higher rate. Therefore, Brazil is using Superovulation protocol (SOV) technology for better cattle embryo production to get good quality beef. It is heavily promoted in Brazil as consumers in Brazil prefer to eat wide varieties of beef. Therefore, Japan exports more products to Brazil. The Japan External Trade Organization and several other groups demonstrating the beef industry in the country were hosting an event at a Sao Paulo restaurant to promote premium meat. In these events, 100 Brazilian guests, including local restaurant operators, enjoyed tasting marbled meat to promote Japanese meat.


A significant proportion of the Muslim community resides in the Middle East & Africa and are major beef consumers worldwide, manufacturers benefit from increasing awareness among consumers through marketing strategies. With a preference for delicious, juicy, and tender tastes in protein, the demand for this beef is increasing in markets such as the UAE and Saudi Arabia.  This beef has traditionally been viewed as a common protein. The growth of the fast food and hotel sectors is contributing to shifts in dietary patterns, with the young and wealthy population showing an increased inclination toward high-quality beef consumption, presenting growth opportunities for manufacturers.


List of Key Companies in Wagyu Beef Market


Key Players Drive Market Growth Through Strategic Global Presence and Unique Facilities


The global market exhibits a fragmented structure consisting of several small companies. The small players in the industry are constantly competing with each other to gain a high market share. Some of the major players in the market include regional players such as Australian Agricultural Company Limited, Starzen Co., Ltd, Agri Beef Co., and other major regional players in Australia and Japan. These manufacturers are continuously exploring new markets and opportunities to expand their existing distribution channels and increase their presence globally. In addition, they provide unique facilities such as free shipping, enabling international consumers to access quality food products easily.


List Key Companies Profiled:



  • Imperial Wagyu Beef, LLC (U.S.)

  • Agri Beef Co. (U.S.)

  • Australian Agricultural Company Limited (Australia)

  • Starzen Co., Ltd (Japan)

  • Blackmore Wagyu (Australia)

  • Stockyard Pty Ltd (Australia)

  • Lone Mountain Wagyu, LLC (U.S.)

  • Jack's Creek (Australia)

  • Sugar Mountain (U.S.)

  • Stanbroke (Australia)

  • Beefcorp Australia Pty Ltd (Australia)

  • Super Prime Beef Inc. (U.S.)


KEY INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENTS:



  • June 2022: Matilda 159 Domain, a U.S.-based restaurant, introduced a limited-time Wagyu item on its menu named Blackmore Wagyu tomahawk steak. Such a limited-time offer helped to create positive word of mouth among consumers and create interest among people to try these items.

  • May 2022: Arby’s launched the Wagyu Steakhouse Burger, a type of Wagyu beef burger. The patty of the newly launched burger is a blend of 48% Wagyu ground beef and America Wagyu beef.

  • September 2021: Blackmore Wagyu, one of the renowned Australian Wagyu beef providers expanded its product line with a new grass-fed breed to meet high demand from fine dining restaurants in Australia. The launch would help Blackmore to increase its sales and revenue. 

  • August 2020: Agri Beef Co. partnered with beef producers in the Jerome, Idaho, area to build a new beef processing facility known as True West Beef. The partnership aimed to provide beef processing solutions to companies affected by the COVID-19 pandemic-induced disruptions.

  • June 2021: Cuker partnered with Mishima Reserve to use digital marketing to reach and effectively engage an audience that loves American Wagyu beef and steak. The partnership jointly developed disruptive strategies that helped Mishima Reserve differentiate itself on digital channels.

  • February 2020: Imperial American Wagyu Beef expanded its retail presence in more than 30 Costco stores in selected West Coast markets of the U.S. The Wagyu beef Costco is available in different sizes and shapes, such as whole muscle and ground beef.


REPORT COVERAGE


An Infographic Representation of Wagyu Beef Market

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The market research report provides detailed market analysis and focuses on key aspects, such as key players in market, competitive landscape, key types, and distribution channel. Besides this, it offers key insights into the latest market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the abovementioned factors, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the market's growth in recent years.


Report Scope & Segmentation
















































ATTRIBUTE



DETAILS



Study Period



2019-2032



Base Year



2023



Estimated Year



2024



Forecast Period



2024-2032



Historical Period



2019-2022



Growth Rate



CAGR of 6.74% from 2024 to 2032



Unit



Value (USD Billion)



Segmentation



By Type



  • Fullblood

  • Purebred

  • Crossbred



By Distribution Channel



  • Foodservice

  • Online Retail

  • Offline Retail



By Region



  • North America (By Type, End-use, and Country)

    • U.S. (By Type)

    • Canada (By Type)

    • Mexico (By Type)



  • Europe (By Type, End-use, and Country)

    • U.K. (By Type)

    • France (By Type)

    • Germany (By Type)

    • Italy (By Type)

    • Spain (By Type)

    • Rest of Europe (By Type)



  • Asia Pacific (By Type, End-use, and Country)

    • China (By Type)

    • Indonesia (By Type)

    • Japan (By Type)

    • Australia (By Type)

    • Singapore (By Type)

    • Rest of Asia Pacific (By Type)



  • South America (By Type, End-use, and Country)

    • Brazil (By Type)

    • Argentina (By Type)

    • Rest of South America (By Type)



  • Middle East & Africa (By Type, End-use, and Country)

    • South Africa (By Type)

    • UAE (By Type)



  • Rest of the Middle East & Africa (By Type)






Frequently Asked Questions

According to Fortune Business Insights, that the global market size was valued at USD 23.94 billion in 2023.

The market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 6.74% during the forecast period (2024-2032).

Fullblood segment is expected to be the leading type segment in the global market.

Rising demand for animal protein among health conscious consumers is a key factor propelling market growth.

Australian Agricultural Company Limited, Starzen Co., Ltd, Agri Beef Co. are a few of the top players in the global market.

Asia Pacific is expected to hold the highest market share in the global market.

The foodservice channel segment is expected to be the fastest-growing segment during the forecast period.

Strict regulatory policies and high pricing are likely to hamper market growth.

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