Growth Prospects Powering the Future of the Global Food and Beverage Flavors Sector
Demand for bold, ethnic, and global flavor profiles will boost innovation; natural flavors will drive growth
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Flavors are defined as additives used to modify the taste and the odor of food and beverage products. Broadly, flavoring substances are segregated into natural and artificial categories based on the raw material used and the production processes involved. Positive consumer perception regarding natural ingredients has attributed to growth in demand for products comprising natural additives, including natural flavors. In addition, rising demand for clean-label products, especially in Western countries, is driving food and beverage manufacturers to make the shift from artificial ingredients to all-natural or non-additive portfolios, which will further boost adoption of natural flavors. However, despite strong demand for natural flavors, the higher price volatility, reduced stability, raw material supply challenges, and regulatory requirements limit large-scale adoption. Conversely, factors supporting the growth of artificial flavors include ease of use, cost efficiency, and flexibility to replicate strong and complex profiles.
Globally, artificial flavors held the majority share in 2019; however, changing consumer demand will drive the market toward natural flavors. Although artificial flavors are expected to register stable growth in terms of volume demand, the increasing prices of natural flavors over the forecast period will drive most of the revenue growth. Asia-Pacific (APAC) is expected to witness stable growth in demand for artificial flavors, primarily driven by the unorganized food and beverage sector, which holds a significant share, especially in high-growth markets such as India. The high cost and the lack of stringent regulations for the use of natural flavors in APAC are other key factors that support the adoption of artificial flavors. However, with rising consumer awareness, demand for natural flavors will witness robust growth, especially in high-volume markets such as China as well as Southeast Asian countries. Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa is also expected to witness double-digit growth in demand for natural flavors. North America and Europe recorded strong penetration of natural flavors in 2019, and demand is expected to increase further over the forecast period.
Globally, beverages dominated the food and beverage flavors market in 2019 in terms of both revenue and volume, followed by bakery and confectionery. Savory and sweet snacks, which includes salty snacks, snack bars, processed fruits and vegetables, processed meat and seafood, soups, noodles, and ready-to-eat meals (RTMs), is projected to witness strong growth over the forecast period. Changing lifestyles and the growing demand for convenient, on-the-go food products are key factors driving growth in the global snacks sector. As taste remains one of the key purchase criteria, demand for bold, ethnic, and unique flavor profiles will drive most of the product innovation across snacks and culinary products. Plant-based food products (plant-based meat substitutes, plant-based snacks, plant-based dairy products) are key propellers of growth and offer significant innovation opportunity for flavor manufacturers, especially in North America and Europe.
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