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Packaged food machinery trends and growth outlook
Saturday, 16 October, 2021, 15 : 00 PM [IST]
Raghav Gupta
The food processing equipment market has experienced a powerful surge in recent times as per a report consolidated by Transparency Market Research. The report stated that the industry is expected to show a paced grow at a CAGR of 5% from 2019 to 2027 and will reach the value of about $80 billion  by the end of this period. Therefore, it can be said that the food processing equipment industry is undoubtedly on a consistently high growth trajectory and will continue to be on it in the approaching times as well.

It is critical for a business in a fast-growing and dynamic industry to be aware of the market trends and demands. This is because in order to efficiently cope with the market trends, a business has to identify them timely and prepare a strategy to accommodate the same.The ability to recognize and capitalize on the market trends before the competitors can help businesses earn an edge over others in the market and thereby increase their profits substantially.

There are several areas whose changing dynamics can impact the overall working and profitability of an industry. Some trends as expected to dictate the landscape of the packaged food machinery market and their resultant impacts on the growth outlook of the industry.

Covid and its impact
The Covid pandemic has admittedly shifted the preferences and demands of the consumers. While people in India traditionally preferred purchasing loose, unpackaged food products, they are now increasingly becoming inclined to purchasing packaged food products. This shift in liking can be attributed to the increased importance of sanitation and hygiene in the present context. The viral outbreak has made people wary of unpackaged products, and thus people now prefer properly packed food products that have been minimally touched.

This trend of increased inclination towards packaged food products in terms of consumer demand has transformed the food industry and has acted to bolster the growth of the food processing and packaging industry. Businesses are now actively looking to sell their food products in neat and sanitized packaging and are thus investing heavily in food packaging equipment. This is because investing in these equipment substantially bolster the efficiency and profits and even reduce costs in the long run.

The firms functioning in the packaged food machinery industry can capitalize on this trend by making available efficient and affordable food processing equipment to the enterprises working in the food business. There has also been a growing demand for small and feasible packages that are travel-friendly and optimally hygienic. This trend can also be taken into consideration by the businesses.

Infusion of automation
Recent times have witnessed robust development on the technological front. In the present day, all businesses are infusing technology in their small and big processes to capitalize on the many benefits such as quickened processes, enhanced precision, minimized errors etc. In this scenario, the food processing industry, too, is expecting a technological shift.

The equipment used in food packaging essentially works to make the packaging process easier and more efficient. Infusing technology and automation in these processes will act to only further bolster the efficacy and pace of the processes. Thus, the industry is expecting a surge in technological infestation very soon, and all firms within the industry should prepare to accommodate the same.

Once the use of technology becomes an inherent part of the industry and its offerings, there would be a robust surge in the sales and revenues of the firms. This is because technology would act to rapidly enhance the feasibility and perks of using the equipment in food packaging processes and thereby amplify the demand. A magnified demand would naturally spell enhanced revenue and thus increase the profits and aid the growth of the organisation.

Need for efficiency
As per a report by Research and Market, the food processing industry in India valued a whopping Rs 25,691.30 billion in 2018 and is projected to reach a value of Rs 53,435.52 billion by the end of 2024. Clearly, the market is experiencing a paced growth in present times that is only expected to further soar in the future. This is why there is an increasing need for efficiency in the processes as undertaken by businesses in their day-to-day operations.

The increased need for efficiency calls for use of technology and automation which not only drastically reduces the time used in processing food but also acts to minimize wastages and mistakes and the consequent loses. Thus, as the need for streamlining and simplifying operations increases, businesses will have to rely on technology and automation.

This need can be optimally met by enterprises by incorporating the use of food packaging equipment in their day-to-day operations. Equipment, both manual as well as technology-based, can work to significantly lessen the requirement of human efforts and thus saves a substantial amount of costs and time, making the processes efficient. It will also act to lessen time spent in recruiting and retaining human resources without minimizing on the quality of the work delivered.

The packaged food industry is experiencing growth in recent times, and so is the food equipment machinery. A significant reason for this is the shift in consumer preferences as people are now increasingly opting for packaged food products over loose ones in fear of possible contamination. As opposed to unpackaged products, packaged products have been minimally touched and are thus considered generally safe for consumption amidst the testing times. Thus, the food industry has changed its functioning and offerings significantly to incorporate and benefit from the shift in consumer preferences.

It is critical for a business operating in a fast-changing industry to be mindful of the industry and market trends. Timely identification and capitalization of these trends can help corporations gain momentum and an edge over their competitors. Some expected market trends and their impact on the growth of the food processing market are discussed in the scope of this article.

(The author is director at Kanchan Metals)

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