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Consumer demand for health drinks to drive APAC growth

Article-Consumer demand for health drinks to drive APAC growth

In line with increasing incorporation into a variety of fortified food & beverage products such as fresh produce, packaged foods, dairy products, and functional beverages, functional food ingredients continue to solidify their position in the industry. Ascending sales of healthy or functional drinks is particularly benefiting the growth of functional food ingredients market in Asia Pacific (APAC). Set to surpass the value of US$ 3.5 billion by the end of 2019, APAC functional food ingredients market will witness a robust CAGR during from 2019 to 2029.

The functional food ingredients market in a nutshell

  • Growing popularity of omega-3 as a supplement in the APAC region is expected to boost the growth of the functional food ingredients market, particularly in the spreadable fats and oils food products segment.
  • ASEAN is ranked as the seventh-largest economy in APAC, and consumers in this region are more inclined towards intake of nutritional food products that offer various health benefits.   
  • Multinational companies manufacturing functional food ingredients are taking initiatives to tackle nutritional deficiencies. Companies such as Nestlé and Unilever have started food fortification to add both macro and micronutrients in their food products.            
    • Nestlé S.A. started fortification of its products such as cereals to target deficiencies in specific global markets. By 2016, the company fortified 200 billion servings of food and beverages, worldwide, while partnering with the HarvestPlus program (bio fortification) and agricultural research partners in India.
    • Unilever PLC partnered with the World Food Program to launch ‘Together for Child Vitality’, an initiative to improve the nutrition and health of school-aged children. Unilever PLC fortifies products such as spreads, seasonings, porridges, and bouillons, which are affordable and easily accessible.  
  • Japan is perceived as a highly profitable market for manufacturers of functional food ingredients worldwide.
    • In 2017-18, 8-10% of Japanese population was diabetic, which created significant opportunities for manufacturers of functional food ingredients to target this demographic by offering products to mitigate the impact of diabetes.

Looking forward

Manufacturers of functional food ingredients are focused on catering to regional or domestic requirements. In India, omega-3, which is normally a non-vegetarian-derived product, has been developed from vegetarian variants such as flaxseed oil and algae. Food and beverage companies are also prioritising R&D investments to enhance their product offerings with multifunctional nutritional profiles.

Consumer inclination towards preventive healthcare remains the key booster to growth of functional food ingredients market in APAC. A new research study states that growing demand for natural functional food ingredients has been a remarkable trend that would further shape the sales of prebiotic ingredients. This is likely to be among the key factors influencing market growth in APAC.

These insights are based on a report on APAC Functional Food Ingredients Market by Future Market Insights.