GVR Report cover Human Milk Oligosaccharides Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Human Milk Oligosaccharides Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Type (2’FL, 3’FL, 3’SL, 6’SL, LNT, LNnT), By Application (Food & Beverages, Dietary Supplements, Infant Formula, Pharmaceuticals), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2024 - 2030

  • Report ID: 978-1-68038-608-0
  • Number of Pages: 120
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)

Human Milk Oligosaccharides Market Trends

The global human milk oligosaccharides market size was valued at USD 260.8 million in 2023 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.9% from 2024 to 2030. The rise in demand for dietary supplements and growing awareness among consumers about the importance of gut health are expected to fuel market growth. Human Milk Oligosaccharides (HMOs), which function as prebiotics in the human body, play a significant role in maintaining gut health. They facilitate the growth of beneficial bacteria, particularly bifidobacteria, in the gut, leading to improved metabolic activity.

U.S. Human Milk Oligosaccharides market size and growth rate, 2024 - 2030

Due to their antimicrobial protection and prebiotic properties, HMOs can be incorporated into a variety of food products, including infant formulas, pharmaceuticals, and functional foods.

The growth of the HMO market may be limited due to factors such as the absence of technology for large-scale production, high costs associated with research and development, and stringent government regulations. HMOs find their largest application in infant formula, which can help promote health and prevent diseases in infants. Additionally, they are crucial for brain development and memory enhancement in humans.

Human milk oligosaccharides are primarily responsible for preventing infections, providing sialic acid for brain development, and exhibiting prebiotic effects. However, oligosaccharide concentration in bovine milk-derived infant formulas is lower when compared to human milk-derived formulas.

The growth of the human milk oligosaccharides market may be hindered by the limited availability and high cost of enzymes and chemicals used in their production. Despite this, the demand for HMOs continues to rise due to their essential role in promoting optimal health and preventing diseases in both infants and adults. HMOs support various aspects of an infant's development, such as digestion, immunity, and brain function, while HMO supplements have been shown to increase beneficial gut bacteria in adults.

As breast milk is not always available, synthetic production methods have been developed to produce HMOs. In addition to infant formula, HMOs are increasingly being incorporated into functional food and beverages. This is particularly true for dairy products, which dominate the functional food market. There is a high demand for functional food and beverages that have prebiotic properties and can promote the growth of good bacteria while eliminating harmful bacteria like salmonella, listeria, and campylobacter.

Market Concentration & Characteristics

In recent years, there has been significant research and development focused on HMOs, leading to innovative products and applications. This includes the incorporation of HMOs into infant formula to more closely mimic the composition of human breast milk, as well as the exploration of HMOs in potential therapeutic and functional food products for both infants and adults.

As of 2023, the level of merger and acquisition activities specifically focused on the human milk oligosaccharides (HMO) market appears to be relatively limited. Given the nascent stage of commercialization and development in the HMO market, there hasn't been a significant number of high-profile mergers or acquisitions within this specific sector.

However, it's important to note that the broader infant nutrition and biotechnology industries, which are closely related to the HMO market, have seen some merger and acquisition activity. This includes partnerships and acquisitions involving companies with expertise in biotechnology, infant formula, and nutrition, which may indirectly impact the development and commercialization of HMO-related products.

Human Milk Oligosaccharides Market Concentration & Characteristics

Regulation plays a significant role in the human milk oligosaccharides (HMO) market due to its close association with infant nutrition and health-related products. The impact of regulation in this market is primarily reflected in quality standards, safety requirements, and marketing claims associated with HMO-containing products.

In the human milk oligosaccharides (HMO) market, potential substitutes depend on the specific application and benefits sought after. While it's important to note that HMOs are unique in their composition and biological functions, there are some alternatives and substitutes that are used in certain contexts.

Type Insights

2’FL dominated the product type segment with a revenue share of over 36.9% in 2023. Several factors are driving the market for 2'FL. Firstly, there is a growing awareness among parents and healthcare professionals about the health benefits of HMOs in general, and 2'FL in particular. 2'FL can help support the development of a baby's immune system, improve gut health, and has cognitive benefits.

In addition, there is a growing demand for infant formula that contains HMOs, particularly in regions where breastfeeding rates are low. As a result, manufacturers of infant formula are increasingly incorporating 2'FL into their products.

According to a study published by the Nestlé Nutrition Institute, a new infant formula with 2′-fucosyllactose (2′FL) had similar gastrointestinal symptoms to a formula without 2′FL. However, infants who received the formula with 2′FL had a lower incidence of infections, which suggests that 2′FL may support the developing immune system in infants.

3'SL type is expected to grow at a CAGR of 13.4% by revenue over the projected period. 3'SL can enhance immune function, protect against pathogens, and support brain development in infants. These benefits have led to increased demand for 3'SL-type HMOs as an ingredient in infant formula and other nutritional products.

In addition, advances in biotechnology and manufacturing processes have made it easier and more cost-effective to produce 3'SL-type HMOs on a large scale. This has led to an increase in supply and a reduction in prices, making 3'SL-type HMOs more accessible to manufacturers of infant formula and other products.

Application Insights

The infant formula was the dominant application in the global market, making up 75.6% of the total revenue in 2023. The demand for HMOs in designing infant formulas is increasing due to their beneficial properties, such as improving gut health, memory enhancement, brain development, prevention of infection, and prebiotic effects.

Global Human Milk Oligosaccharides market share and size, 2023

The dietary supplement was the second-largest application segment, contributing to over 15.6% of the market revenue in 2023. As HMOs offer various health benefits, their consumption of functional food and beverage formulations is expected to increase significantly over the forecast period, leading to a surge in demand.

The use of HMOs in dietary supplements provides immune support, protection against bacterial and viral infections, digestive comfort, and support for brain function. The food supplements industry is witnessing growth due to increasing healthcare costs, changing lifestyles, and a rise in the geriatric population. Moreover, rising consumer health awareness and increasing disposable incomes further support this trend.

Regional Insights

Asia Pacific held a revenue share of 47.2% in 2023. The growth of the Asia Pacific HMO industry is forecasted to be influenced by various factors such as an expanding population, increased mortality rates, higher disposable income, and greater consumer awareness concerning health and hygiene. This region is witnessing a surge in the prevalence of chronic ailments such as gut diseases, diabetes, high blood pressure, and rickets, leading to rising demand for functional food and beverages, consequently propelling the regional market for human milk oligosaccharides.

Human Milk Oligosaccharides Market Trends, by Region, 2024 - 2030

Furthermore, the burgeoning markets for dietary supplements and baby food in countries like India and China are expected to contribute significantly to the growing demand for HMO products in the coming years.

North America is expected to expand at a CAGR of 18.3% during the forecast period. North America is expected to experience a surge in market growth due to the rising demand for infant food, a significant number of manufacturers of human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs), and the regulatory clearance for HMOs as a constituent of infant formula. The infant formula and baby food industry in the North America are poised for growth in the upcoming years, fueled by the presence of several major manufacturers and advancements in technology.

Key Companies & Market Share Insights

Manufacturers are dedicating resources to research and development to create cost-effective methods for producing HMOs on a large scale. While the HMO industry is currently considered niche, there is significant potential for growth in areas such as functional foods and beverages, as well as dietary supplements. A considerable portion of HMOs produced currently is utilized in infant formula. In response to the increasing demand for HMOs, manufacturers are utilizing tactics such as forging partnerships, making agreements, and expanding production capacity.

Prominent market participants have invested in R&D activities over the years to innovate their product offerings. For instance, in November 2020, Abbott launched Similac Pro-Advance infant formula in Canada with an ingredient that supports a baby's immune system and feeds good bacteria in the digestive tract.

Key Human Milk Oligosaccharides Companies:

  • Chr. Hansen Holding A/S
  • Kyowa Hakko Europe GmbH
  • ZuChem Inc.
  • Elicityl SA
  • FrieslandCampina Ingredients
  • Inboise N.V.
  • Glycom A/S
  • DSM
  • Dextra Laboratories Limited
  • Carbosynth Limited

Human Milk Oligosaccharides Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


The market size value in 2024

USD 298.6 million

The revenue forecast in 2030

USD 688.5 million

Growth Rate

CAGR of 14.9% from 2024 to 2030

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2018 - 2022

Forecast period

2024 - 2030

Report updated

January 2024

Quantitative units

Revenue in USD Million, Volume in Metric Tons and CAGR from 2024 to 2030

Report coverage

Revenue Forecast, Company Ranking, Competitive Landscape, Growth Factors, and Trends

Segments covered

Type, Application, and Region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Central & South America; Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S.; Canada; Mexico; UK; Germany; France; Italy; Spain; China; Japan; India; Australia; Brazil; South Africa

Key companies profiled

Chr. Hansen Holding A/S; Kyowa Hakko Europe GmbH; ZuChem Inc.; Elicityl SA; FrieslandCampina Ingredients; Inbois N.V.; Carbosynth Limited; Glycom A/S, DSM, Dextra Labrotories Limited, Carbosynth Limited, RAJVI ENTERPISE

Customization scope

Free report customization (equivalent up to 8 analysts working days) with purchase. Addition or alteration to country, regional & segment scope.

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Global Human Milk Oligosaccharides Market Report Segmentation

This report forecasts revenue growth at regional & country levels and provides an analysis on the latest trends and opportunities in each of the sub-segments from 2018 to 2030. For this study, Grand View Research has segmented the human milk oligosaccharides market based on type, distribution channel, and region.

Global Human Milk Oligosaccharides Market Report Segmentation

  • Type Outlook (USD Million; Metric Tons; 2018 - 2030)

    • 2’FL

    • 3’FL

    • 3’SL

    • 6’SL

    • LNT

    • LNnT

  • Form Outlook (USD Million; Metric Tons; 2018 - 2030)

    • Food & Beverages

    • Dietary Supplements

    • Infant Formula

    • Pharmaceuticals

  • Regional Outlook (USD Million; Metric Tons; 2018 - 2030)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

      • Mexico

    • Europe

      • U.K.

      • Germany

      • France

      • Italy

      • Spain

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • Japan

      • India

      • Australia

    • Central & South America

      • Brazil

    • Middle East & Africa

      • South Africa

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