Read full article by Nandita Vijay @FBNews PC: Soulfull
The Indian consumer today is no longer bound by the three fixed meals a day. The consumption moments have increased and as a testament to this, the market for snack food segment is on the rise. Hence the focus of the food processing industry has been to research and devise innovative ways of developing products and solutions that optimally satisfy people’s nutritional needs.
According to a report, the revenue in the snack food segment amounts to $5,254 million in 2019 and the market is expected to grow annually by 7.5% CAGR 2019-2023. With this, there is also a rise in health-consciousness among 21st century customers who lead a busy lifestyle and are constantly looking for quick healthy fixes for their multiple meals each day.
The University of Agriculture Sciences noted that India’s food processing sector needs translational research and accelerated product development. Food processing industry will require larger investments and an effective functioning of the innovation pathway. Research to promote innovation must be supported increasingly on a cooperative rather than a competitive basis. This requires effective communication among science agencies, research institutions, academia and industry.
Additionally, increasing urbanisation, growth in the number of double-income households, paucity of time and the impending inflation which have resulted in changing food consumption patterns. This has fueled the demand for convenience and healthy foods in the country.
“The Indian agro and food processing industries are recording double-digit growth. Being the second-largest producer of farm produce in the world and the third-largest economy in terms of purchasing power parity (PPP), India indicates promising prospects. With a massive food market that is fast expanding, generating growth in the retail sector along with supporting policies and fiscal incentives, India’s food economy is thriving,” said Dr V G Dhanakumar, director and professor, Indian Institute of Plantation Management, Bangalore.
Functional foods will influence daily diet choices. An increasing number of consumers are expected to pay attention to the functional and medicinal attributes of food products to help them select those that align best with their diet or lifestyle choices.
It is the revival of more indigenous grains. While millets were the focus of attention in 2018 for India and the consumer interest in 2019 and 2020 will trigger the revival of other traditional grains and indigenous varieties of rice, ordinary vegetables will be the new exotic. Here gharelu vegetables such as bathua, tendli, lauki, and tinda, which have not shown up in commercial kitchens so far, will feature prominently in restaurant menus, according to sources at UAS.
Conscientious cooking and responsible eating will gain traction. As consumers become aware of and appreciate the intricate relationship between food choices and environmental well-being, they will actively seek solutions that help minimise impact on themselves and the environment.
Fermented foods will be everywhere. There will be a rise in the variety of naturally fermented products that are available on shelves and menus in 2020. Micro cuisines will hit the spotlight. There will be an explosion of conversations, events, products, and dining experiences inspired by micro-cuisines from specific sub-regions, communities, and even family kitchens. Grandmother recipes will rule menus. The food industry will create more opportunities to pay homage to mothers, grandmothers and home chefs as the original sources of inspiration, and custodians of our rich culinary diversity. There will be a reinvention of snacking.
Consumers will get more opportunities to replace their main meals with credible snacking products that align with their priorities around health, convenience and costs. There will be a boom in availability of unusual products with labels like rustic, artisanal, small-batch, crafted and handmade.
According to Prashant Parameswaran, CEO and MD, Kottaram Agro Foods, which has Soulfull as its brand, as a superfood and a smart food, millets are beneficial to consumers, farmers and thereby contribute to a sustainable ecosystem. He stated, “It is good to see that Indian and international institutes are realising the potential of millets. To promote millets as a superfood, we work closely with government agencies and agricultural bodies.”