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The 2007-2012 Outlook for Ready-To-Eat Custard Desserts Cups in the United States


The concept of latent demand is rather subtle. The term latent typically refers to something that is dormant, not observable, or not yet realized. Demand is the notion of an economic quantity that a target population or market requires under different assumptions of price, quality, and distribution, among other factors. Latent demand, therefore, is commonly defined by economists as the industry earnings of a market when that market becomes accessible and attractive to serve by competing firms. It is a measure, therefore, of potential industry earnings (P.I.E.) or total revenues (not profit) if the United States is served in an efficient manner. It is typically expressed as the total revenues potentially extracted by firms. The “market” is defined at a given level in the value chain. There can be latent demand at the retail level, at the wholesale level, the manufacturing level, and the raw materials level (the P.I.E. of higher levels of the value chain being always smaller than the P.I.E. of levels at lower levels of the same value chain, assuming all levels maintain minimum profitability).

The latent demand for ready-to-eat custard desserts cups in the United States is not actual or historic sales. Nor is latent demand future sales. In fact, latent demand can be either lower or higher than actual sales if a market is inefficient (i.e., not representative of relatively competitive levels). Inefficiencies arise from a number of factors, including the lack of international openness, cultural barriers to consumption, regulations, and cartel-like behavior on the part of firms. In general, however, latent demand is typically larger than actual sales in a market.

For reasons discussed later, this report does not consider the notion of “unit quantities”, only total latent revenues (i.e., a calculation of price times quantity is never made, though one is implied). The units used in this report are U.S. dollars not adjusted for inflation (i.e., the figures incorporate inflationary trends). If inflation rates vary in a substantial way compared to recent experience, actually sales can also exceed latent demand (not adjusted for inflation). On the other hand, latent demand can be typically higher than actual sales as there are often distribution inefficiencies that reduce actual sales below the level of latent demand.

As mentioned in the introduction, this study is strategic in nature, taking an aggregate and long-run view, irrespective of the players or products involved. In fact, all the current products or services on the market can cease to exist in their present form (i.e., at a brand-, R&D specification, or corporate-image level) and all the players can be replaced by other firms (i.e., via exits, entries, mergers, bankruptcies, etc.), and there will still be latent demand for ready-to-eat custard desserts cups at the aggregate level. Product and service offerings, and the actual identity of the players involved, while important for certain issues, are relatively unimportant for estimates of latent demand.


In order to estimate the latent demand for ready-to-eat custard desserts cups across the states and cites of the United States, we used a multi-stage approach. Before applying the approach, one needs a basic theory from which such estimates are created. In this case, we heavily rely on the use of certain basic economic assumptions. In particular, there is an assumption governing the shape and type of aggregate latent demand functions. Latent demand functions relate the income of a state, city, household, or individual to realized consumption. Latent demand (often realized as consumption when an industry is efficient), at any level of the value chain, takes place if an equilibrium is realized. For firms to serve a market, they must perceive a latent demand and be able to serve that demand at a minimal return. The single most important variable determining consumption, assuming latent demand exists, is income (or other financial resources at higher levels of the value chain). Other factors that can pivot or shape demand curves include external or exogenous shocks (i.e., business cycles), and or changes in utility for the product in question.

Ignoring, for the moment, exogenous shocks and variations in utility across geographies, the aggregate relation between income and consumption has been a central theme in economics. The figure below concisely summarizes one aspect of problem. In the 1930s, John Meynard Keynes conjectured that as incomes rise, the average propensity to consume would fall. The average propensity to consume is the level of consumption divided by the level of income, or the slope of the line from the origin to the consumption function. He estimated this relationship empirically and found it to be true in the short-run (mostly based on cross-sectional data). The higher the income, the lower the average propensity to consume. This type of consumption function is labeled "A" in the figure below (note the rather flat slope of the curve). In the 1940s, another macroeconomist, Simon Kuznets, estimated long-run consumption functions which indicated that the marginal propensity to consume was rather constant (using time series data). This type of consumption function is shown as "B" in the figure below (note the higher slope and zero-zero intercept). The average propensity to consume is constant.

Is it declining or is it constant? A number of other economists, notably Franco Modigliani and Milton Friedman, in the 1950s (and Irving Fisher earlier), explained why the two functions were different using various assumptions on intertemporal budget constraints, savings, and wealth. The shorter the time horizon, the more consumption can depend on wealth (earned in previous years) and business cycles. In the long-run, however, the propensity to consume is more constant. Similarly, in the long run, households with no income eventually have no consumption (wealth is depleted). While the debate surrounding beliefs about how income and consumption are related is interesting, in this study a very particular school of thought is adopted. In particular, we are considering the latent demand for ready-to-eat custard desserts cups across the states and cities of the United States. The smallest cities have few inhabitants. we assume that all of these cities fall along a "long-run" aggregate consumption function. This long-run function applies despite some of these states having wealth; current income dominates the latent demand for ready-to-eat custard desserts cups. So, latent demand in the long-run has a zero intercept. However, we allow different propensities to consume (including being on consumption functions with differing slopes, which can account for differences in industrial organization, and end-user preferences).

Given this overriding philosophy, we will now describe the methodology used to create the latent demand estimates for ready-to-eat custard desserts cups in the United States. Since this methodology has been applied to a large number of categories, the rather academic discussion below is general and can be applied to a wide variety of categories and geographic locations, not just ready-to-eat custard desserts cups in the United States.

Step 1. Product Definition and Data Collection

Any study of latent demand requires that some standard be established to define “efficiently served”. Having implemented various alternatives and matched these with market outcomes, we have found that the optimal approach is to assume that certain key indicators are more likely to reflect efficiency than others. These indicators are given greater weight than others in the estimation of latent demand compared to others for which no known data are available. Of the many alternatives, we have found the assumption that the highest aggregate income and highest income-per-capita markets reflect the best standards for “efficiency”. High aggregate income alone is not sufficient (i.e. some cities have high aggregate income, but low income per capita and can not assumed to be efficient). Aggregate income can be operationalized in a number of ways, including gross domestic product (for industrial categories), or total disposable income (for household categories; population times average income per capita, or number of households times average household income).

Latent demand is therefore estimated using data collected for relatively efficient markets from independent data sources (e.g. Official Chinese Agencies, the World Resources Institute, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, various agencies from the United Nations, industry trade associations, the International Monetary Fund, Euromonitor, Mintel, Thomson Financial Services, the U.S. Industrial Outlook, and the World Bank). Depending on original data sources used, the definition of “ready-to-eat custard desserts cups” is established. In the case of this report, the data were reported at the aggregate level, with no further breakdown or definition. In other words, any potential product or service that might be incorporated within ready-to-eat custard desserts cups falls under this category. Public sources rarely report data at the disaggregated level in order to protect private information from individual firms that might dominate a specific product-market. These sources will therefore aggregate across components of a category and report only the aggregate to the public. While private data are certainly available, this report only relies on public data at the aggregate level without reliance on the summation of various category components. In other words, this report does not aggregate a number of components to arrive at the “whole”. Rather, it starts with the “whole”, and estimates the whole for all states and cities in the United States (without needing to know the specific parts that went into the whole in the first place).

Given this caveat, in this report we define the retail sales of "ready-to-eat custard desserts cups" as including all commonly understood products falling within this broad category, such as ready-to-eat sweet sauces made from eggs, milk, and sugar in single-serving cups which may be sold in multipacks, irrespective of product packaging, formulation, size, or form.All figures are in a common currency (U.S. dollars, millions) and are not adjusted for inflation (i.e., they are current values). Exchange rates used to convert to U.S. dollars are averages for the year in question. Future exchange rates are assumed to be constant in the future at the current level (the average of the year of this publication’s release in 2006).

Step 2. Filtering and Smoothing

Based on the aggregate view of ready-to-eat custard desserts cups as defined above, data were then collected for as many geographic locations as possible for that same definition, at the same level of the value chain. This generates a convenience sample of indicators from which comparable figures are available. If the series in question do not reflect the same accounting period, then adjustments are made. In order to eliminate short-term effects of business cycles, the series are smoothed using an 2 year moving average weighting scheme (longer weighting schemes do not substantially change the results). If data are available for a geographic region, but these reflect short-run aberrations due to exogenous shocks (such as would be the case of beef sales in a state or city stricken with foot and mouth disease), these observations were dropped or "filtered" from the analysis.

Step 3. Filling in Missing Values

In some cases, data are available on a sporadic basis. In other cases, data may be available for only one year. From a Bayesian perspective, these observations should be given greatest weight in estimating missing years. Assuming that other factors are held constant, the missing years are extrapolated using changes and growth in aggregate national, state and city-level income. Based on the overriding philosophy of a long-run consumption function (defined earlier), states and cities which have missing data for any given year, are estimated based on historical dynamics of aggregate income for that geographic entity.

Step 4. Varying Parameter, Non-linear Estimation

Given the data available from the first three steps, the latent demand is estimated using a “varying-parameter cross-sectionally pooled time series model”. Simply stated, the effect of income on latent demand is assumed to be constant unless there is empirical evidence to suggest that this effect varies (i.e., . the slope of the income effect is not necessarily same for all states or cities). This assumption applies along the aggregate consumption function, but also over time (i.e., not all states or cities in the United States are perceived to have the same income growth prospects over time). Another way of looking at this is to say that latent demand for ready-to-eat custard desserts cups is more likely to be similar across states or cities that have similar characteristics in terms of economic development.

This approach is useful across geographic regions for which some notion of non-linearity exists in the aggregate cross-region consumption function. For some categories, however, the reader must realize that the numbers will reflect a state’s or city’s contribution to latent demand in the United States and may never be realized in the form of local sales.

Step 5. Fixed-Parameter Linear Estimation

Nonlinearities are assumed in cases where filtered data exist along the aggregate consumption function. Because the United States consists of more than 15,000 cities, there will always be those cities, especially toward the bottom of the consumption function, where non-linear estimation is simply not possible. For these cities, equilibrium latent demand is assumed to be perfectly parametric and not a function of wealth (i.e., a city’s stock of income), but a function of current income (a city’s flow of income). In the long run, if a state has no current income, the latent demand for ready-to-eat custard desserts cups is assumed to approach zero. The assumption is that wealth stocks fall rapidly to zero if flow income falls to zero (i.e., cities which earn low levels of income will not use their savings, in the long run, to demand ready-to-eat custard desserts cups). In a graphical sense, for low income cities, latent demand approaches zero in a parametric linear fashion with a zero-zero intercept. In this stage of the estimation procedure, a low-income city is assumed to have a latent demand proportional to its income, based on the cities closest to it on the aggregate consumption function.

Step 6. Aggregation and Benchmarking

Based on the models described above, latent demand figures are estimated for all major cities in the United States. These are then aggregated to get state totals. This report considers a city as a part of the regional and national market. The purpose is to understand the density of demand within a state and the extent to which a city might be used as a point of distribution within its state. From an economic perspective, however, a city does not represent a population within rigid geographical boundaries. To an economist or strategic planner, a city represents an area of dominant influence over markets in adjacent areas. This influence varies from one industry to another, but also from one period of time to another. we allocate latent demand across areas of dominant influence based on the relative economic importance of cities within its state. Not all cities (e.g. the smaller towns) are estimated within each state as demand may be allocated to adjacent areas of influence. Since some cities have higher economic wealth than others within the same state, a city’s population is not generally used to allocate latent demand. Rather, the level of economic activity of the city vis-à-vis others
1 INTRODUCTION 9 1.1 Overview 9 1.2 What is Latent Demand and the P.I.E.? 9 1.3 The Methodology 10 1.3.1 Step 1. Product Definition and Data Collection 11 1.3.2 Step 2. Filtering and Smoothing 12 1.3.3 Step 3. Filling in Missing Values 12 1.3.4 Step 4. Varying Parameter, Non-linear Estimation 12 1.3.5 Step 5. Fixed-Parameter Linear Estimation 13 1.3.6 Step 6. Aggregation and Benchmarking 13 2 SUMMARY OF FINDINGS 14 2.1 Latent Demand in The US 15 3 FAR WEST 16 3.1 Executive Summary 16 3.2 Latent Demand by Year - Alaska 18 3.3 Cities Sorted by Rank - Alaska 19 3.4 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Alaska 20 3.5 Latent Demand by Year - California 21 3.6 Cities Sorted by Rank - California 22 3.7 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - California 40 3.8 Latent Demand by Year - Hawaii 59 3.9 Cities Sorted by Rank - Hawaii 60 3.10 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Hawaii 62 3.11 Latent Demand by Year - Nevada 64 3.12 Cities Sorted by Rank - Nevada 65 3.13 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Nevada 66 3.14 Latent Demand by Year - Oregon 68 3.15 Cities Sorted by Rank - Oregon 69 3.16 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Oregon 72 3.17 Latent Demand by Year - Washington 76 3.18 Cities Sorted by Rank - Washington 77 3.19 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Washington 83 4 GREAT LAKES 91 4.1 Executive Summary 91 4.2 Latent Demand by Year - Illinois 93 4.3 Cities Sorted by Rank - Illinois 94 4.4 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Illinois 105 4.5 Latent Demand by Year - Indiana 118 4.6 Cities Sorted by Rank - Indiana 119 4.7 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Indiana 124 4.8 Latent Demand by Year - Michigan 129 4.9 Cities Sorted by Rank - Michigan 130 4.10 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Michigan 137 4.11 Latent Demand by Year - Ohio 145 4.12 Cities Sorted by Rank - Ohio 146 4.13 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Ohio 157 4.14 Latent Demand by Year - Wisconsin 168 4.15 Cities Sorted by Rank - Wisconsin 169 4.16 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Wisconsin 178 5 MID-ATLANTIC 187 5.1 Executive Summary 187 5.2 Latent Demand by Year - Delaware 189 5.3 Cities Sorted by Rank - Delaware 190 5.4 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Delaware 191 5.5 Latent Demand by Year - District of Columbia 191 5.6 Cities Sorted by Rank - District of Columbia 193 5.7 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - District of Columbia 193 5.8 Latent Demand by Year - Maryland 194 5.9 Cities Sorted by Rank - Maryland 195 5.10 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Maryland 201 5.11 Latent Demand by Year - New Jersey 207 5.12 Cities Sorted by Rank - New Jersey 208 5.13 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - New Jersey 217 5.14 Latent Demand by Year - New York 226 5.15 Cities Sorted by Rank - New York 227 5.16 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - New York 250 5.17 Latent Demand by Year - Pennsylvania 273 5.18 Cities Sorted by Rank - Pennsylvania 274 5.19 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Pennsylvania 287 6 NEW ENGLAND 301 6.1 Executive Summary 301 6.2 Latent Demand by Year - Connecticut 303 6.3 Cities Sorted by Rank - Connecticut 304 6.4 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Connecticut 308 6.5 Latent Demand by Year - Maine 313 6.6 Cities Sorted by Rank - Maine 314 6.7 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Maine 318 6.8 Latent Demand by Year - Massachusetts 323 6.9 Cities Sorted by Rank - Massachusetts 324 6.10 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Massachusetts 332 6.11 Latent Demand by Year - New Hampshire 340 6.12 Cities Sorted by Rank - New Hampshire 341 6.13 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - New Hampshire 345 6.14 Latent Demand by Year - Rhode Island 349 6.15 Cities Sorted by Rank - Rhode Island 350 6.16 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Rhode Island 351 6.17 Latent Demand by Year - Vermont 352 6.18 Cities Sorted by Rank - Vermont 353 6.19 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Vermont 355 7 PLAINS 359 7.1 Executive Summary 359 7.2 Latent Demand by Year - Iowa 361 7.3 Cities Sorted by Rank - Iowa 362 7.4 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Iowa 366 7.5 Latent Demand by Year - Kansas 370 7.6 Cities Sorted by Rank - Kansas 371 7.7 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Kansas 374 7.8 Latent Demand by Year - Minnesota 377 7.9 Cities Sorted by Rank - Minnesota 378 7.10 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Minnesota 384 7.11 Latent Demand by Year - Missouri 390 7.12 Cities Sorted by Rank - Missouri 391 7.13 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Missouri 396 7.14 Latent Demand by Year - Nebraska 402 7.15 Cities Sorted by Rank - Nebraska 403 7.16 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Nebraska 404 7.17 Latent Demand by Year - North Dakota 406 7.18 Cities Sorted by Rank - North Dakota 407 7.19 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - North Dakota 407 7.20 Latent Demand by Year - South Dakota 409 7.21 Cities Sorted by Rank - South Dakota 410 7.22 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - South Dakota 411 8 ROCKIES 412 8.1 Executive Summary 412 8.2 Latent Demand by Year - Colorado 414 8.3 Cities Sorted by Rank - Colorado 415 8.4 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Colorado 418 8.5 Latent Demand by Year - Idaho 423 8.6 Cities Sorted by Rank - Idaho 424 8.7 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Idaho 425 8.8 Latent Demand by Year - Montana 427 8.9 Cities Sorted by Rank - Montana 428 8.10 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Montana 429 8.11 Latent Demand by Year - Utah 431 8.12 Cities Sorted by Rank - Utah 432 8.13 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Utah 435 8.14 Latent Demand by Year - Wyoming 438 8.15 Cities Sorted by Rank - Wyoming 439 8.16 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Wyoming 440 9 SOUTHEAST 441 9.1 Executive Summary 441 9.2 Latent Demand by Year - Alabama 443 9.3 Cities Sorted by Rank - Alabama 444 9.4 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Alabama 448 9.5 Latent Demand by Year - Arkansas 452 9.6 Cities Sorted by Rank - Arkansas 453 9.7 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Arkansas 455 9.8 Latent Demand by Year - Florida 459 9.9 Cities Sorted by Rank - Florida 460 9.10 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Florida 474 9.11 Latent Demand by Year - Georgia 489 9.12 Cities Sorted by Rank - Georgia 490 9.13 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Georgia 495 9.14 Latent Demand by Year - Kentucky 502 9.15 Cities Sorted by Rank - Kentucky 503 9.16 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Kentucky 506 9.17 Latent Demand by Year - Louisiana 510 9.18 Cities Sorted by Rank - Louisiana 511 9.19 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Louisiana 515 9.20 Latent Demand by Year - Mississippi 519 9.21 Cities Sorted by Rank - Mississippi 520 9.22 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Mississippi 522 9.23 Latent Demand by Year - North Carolina 525 9.24 Cities Sorted by Rank - North Carolina 526 9.25 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - North Carolina 532 9.26 Latent Demand by Year - South Carolina 539 9.27 Cities Sorted by Rank - South Carolina 540 9.28 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - South Carolina 543 9.29 Latent Demand by Year - Tennessee 547 9.30 Cities Sorted by Rank - Tennessee 548 9.31 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Tennessee 552 9.32 Latent Demand by Year - Virginia 557 9.33 Cities Sorted by Rank - Virginia 558 9.34 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Virginia 562 9.35 Latent Demand by Year - West Virginia 567 9.36 Cities Sorted by Rank - West Virginia 568 9.37 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - West Virginia 569 10 SOUTHWEST 571 10.1 Executive Summary 571 10.2 Latent Demand by Year - Arizona 572 10.3 Cities Sorted by Rank - Arizona 573 10.4 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Arizona 576 10.5 Latent Demand by Year - New Mexico 579 10.6 Cities Sorted by Rank - New Mexico 580 10.7 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - New Mexico 581 10.8 Latent Demand by Year - Oklahoma 584 10.9 Cities Sorted by Rank - Oklahoma 585 10.10 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Oklahoma 587 10.11 Latent Demand by Year - Texas 591 10.12 Cities Sorted by Rank - Texas 592 10.13 Cities Sorted by Zipcode - Texas 606 11 DISCLAIMERS, WARRANTEES, AND USER AGREEMENT PROVISIONS 620 11.1 Disclaimers & Safe Harbor 620 11.2 User Agreement Provisions 621
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