The global food and beverage industry is growing at around 5% a year and global expenditure on food products by consumers is expected to reach US$20 trillion by 2030. Key trends for new product development are in health, convenience, naturality and sustainability. New foods based on fruits and vegetables fulfil many of the demands of the premium consumer. The intrinsic “health halo” of natural produce make ingredients derived from fruits and vegetables highly sought after in the global marketplace.
The market for functional foods – foods that offer benefits beyond basic nutrition – is one of the fastest growing segments of the global food industry. Foods and beverages that offer validated health claims are expected to reach US$54 billion by 2017, mainly in the key markets of Japan, the USA and Europe. Emerging economies, particularly in Asia, are also beginning to demand more of these products.
New Zealand has a reputation for high quality natural produce and environmental sustainability. The New Zealand food sector produces enough food to feed more than 20 million people, around five times its population. Primary production accounts for the vast majority of the sector, and agri-food exports are predicted to treble by 2025, to around $58 billion. This growth will be through the production of new high value food and beverage products, combined with value chains that enhance the delivery of New Zealand products to its premium customers.