Global Dried Food Industry
The global dried food industry is involved in the manufacture of food products such as spices, processed fruit and vegetables, nuts, dried fruit, honey, processed fishery products, and other foodstuffs.
Dried food manufacturers preserve food through dehydration, which involves the removal of moisture from a material to prevent the growth of micro-organisms that destroy foods.
- The global edible nuts market is expected to break the 13 million ton mark by 2015, reports Global Industry Analysts. Market growth is fuelled by changing eating habits as consumers become increasingly health conscious. Companies are marketing dried fruits and nuts as snack foods, trying to appeal to healthy eaters as an alternative to confectionary and bakery products.
- Producers of dried vegetables are using new techniques yielding better color and flavor. Certain dehydrated vegetables are used to make snacks, fast food, soups and instant vegetable noodles like green chili, cucumber, carrot, cabbage and bitter gourd. Other vegetables have different applications within the food industry like dehydrated onion, which is used to manufacture masala bread, buns, pickles, tomato ketchups, pickles, sauces, meat sausages and breakfast foods. Dehydrated garlic is also popular for its versatility, used in certain medicinal formulations, boasting antiseptic properties, and it is also used as a digestion aid for its food absorption qualities.
- The EU and the US are leaders in the global dried fruits and edible nuts market. Peanuts represent the leading market segment in the US edible nuts market. Peanuts are an increasingly popular snack due to increasing consumer awareness as to their health benefits as a source of protein and because of their nutrient content (niacin, manganese, folate, magnesium, phosphorus and vitamin E) as well as their role in reducing cholesterol levels.
Leading players in the global dried fruit and nut market include Ocean Spray Cranberries, Tree Top, Paradise, Sunsweet Growers, Mariani Packing Company, Arimex, Seneca Foods, National Raisin Company, Sun-Maid Growers of California and S&W Fine Foods.
Sunsweet Growers is the leading dried tree fruits handler, selling prunes, cranberries and apricots. The company processes over 50,000 tons of prunes every year. It markets and processes dried fruit from over 300 grower-members, mostly with orchard holdings in California. Sunsweet has 85% brand recognition in US homes.
Regional Market Share
- In 2011, India witnessed the consolidation of existing players that entered dried processed food, reports Euromonitor International. These included Capital Foods, manufacturer of dehydrated soup and plain noodles, and private label outfits Aditya Birla Retail and Pantaloon Retail India. In the rice sector, domestic outfits focused on exports moved into Indian retail sales in 2010 and 2011.
- The US dried processed food market grew during the economic recession as consumers opted for cheaper food with longer shelf life, reports Euromonitor International. The dried processed food market grew by 7% in 2011 in constant value terms and by 1% in volume terms. Market growth is expected to slow as the economy recovers and consumers with rising disposable income opt for more expensive meal options at home or in restaurants.
- There has been a falling off in rice production due to poor weather conditions, which destroyed crops in Canada, the EU and Russia, reports Euromonitor International. Rice fields in China and Pakistan were also flooded due to poor weather conditions. Standard wheat, on the other hand, rose 60% in terms of value in 2010. The UK gets the majority of its grain from Russia, and the latter put a ban on grain exports in 2010 and the early part of 2011. Between this ban and the impact of poor weather conditions on crops, global dried food prices are continuing to climb.
Food drying could play a key role in value chain solutions, with farms drying unmarketable or surplus products. With a growing global population and worries over meeting global food demand, it is vital to preserve food. Dried food manufacturers may step up to offer a solution, while fuelling market growth.
Leading Industry Associations