Brazil flag Brazil: Buying and Selling

The distribution network in Brazil

Evolution of the Sector
According to USDA Foreign Agricultural Service latest report, in 2018, the food processing industry registered annual sales of R$642 billion (US$179 billion). Food represented 81% and beverages 19% of total sales. The Brazilian Supermarket Association (ABRAS) reported supermarket revenues of R$355.7 billion (US$97 billion) in 2018, representing 5.2% of the country’s GDP. The food retail industry sales has recorded a constantly growing trend in recent years, despite the country's uncertain economic climate.

Brazilian consumers have changed their purchasing habits: decreasing brand loyalty during the recession period and abandoning more expensive habits. Shifting demand went from premium brands – the majority is imported – to more affordable products. As consumers are not willing to pay higher prices, retailers have changed the selection of products. Within the imported categories, retailers kept well-known brands and changed the mix of products, opting for less expensive items. Supermarkets are the most important segment for imported food and beverage products. This format presents more diversity, which is the most important characteristic to affluent consumers, behind proximity. Penetration of foreign goods is considerably higher in supermarkets, ranging from 30-60%.

In 2018, the retail industry got more concentrated among the 50 largest retailers, contrasting the growth trend of the overall industry. Among the top Brazilian retailers there are Carrefour, Grupo Pao de Acucar, Walmart, Cencosud, Supermercados BH and DMA distribuidora.
Market share

According to latest data provided by ABRAS (Brazilian Association of Retail Stores), in 2018 the Brazilian market was composed of 451 retailers. The stores were divided into five categories: convenience, neighborhood stores, supermarkets, hypermarkets, and wholesale clubs. Hypermarkets and supermarkets are the most widespread. The top 50 retailers accounted for almost 47% of overall sales in 2018, reinforcing the concentration of the market. Supermarket purchasing accounts for almost 80% of the total self-service grocery stores in the country.
In 2018, the market was divided as follows:

  • Carrefour: 15.8% market shares (Carrefour Mercado, Carrefour Bairro, Carrefour Express, Supeco, Atacadão).
  • GPA: 15% market shares (Pão de Açucar, Minuto Pão de Açucar, Extra, Mini Mercado, Assai)   
  • Walmart: 8% market shares (WalMart, Hipermercado Big, Hiper Bompreço, Bompreço, Mercadorama, Nacional, TodoDia, Maxxi Atacado, Sam's Club)
  • Cencosud: 2.4% market shares (G.Barbosa, Perini, Mercantil, Bretas, Presunic)
  • Irmaos Muffato: 1.9% market shares (Super Muffato, Muffato Max)
  • Supermercados BH: 1.7% market shares
  • SDB Comercio: 1.7% market shares
  • Companhia Zaffari: 1.5% market shares
  • DMA Distribuidora: 1.0% market shares
  • Sonda: 1.0% market shares
Retail Sector Organisations
Brazilian Supermarket Association (Abrasnet)

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Latest Update: May 2022

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