Guest article: analyst insights

Global market for natural food colors to reach $1.7bn by 2020

By Iti Singh and Indu Tyagi

- Last updated on GMT

'Consumers are ready to give up long shelf life products for healthy and natural ingredients'
'Consumers are ready to give up long shelf life products for healthy and natural ingredients'

Related tags: Food and drink

The global market for natural food colors is predicted to reach $1.7bn by 2020, with 20% of this market attributed to beverage applications. Analysts Iti Singh and Indu Tyagi, from research firm MarketsandMarkets, look at the opportunities for beverage manufacturers in this guest column.

Increasing health consciousness has led to the growth of the clean label trend in all regions of the world. More than 70% of consumers in America are willing to pay high prices for natural ingredient based food products and beverages. In Asia-Pacific and Latin America also, there has been a substantial growth of processed food and beverages industry.

According to the International Food Information Council (IIFC) Foundation’s 2014 Food and Health survey, apart from taste and price, healthfulness is one of the most important factors affecting consumers’ food and beverage purchases.

This change in consumer behavior provides immense market opportunities for the beverage manufacturers to launch innovative products with natural colors and flavors.

In a growing number of food products, artificial colors are being replaced by the natural ones and consumers are ready to give up long shelf-life products for healthy and natural ingredients in the food on their plates.

A recent study done by MarketsandMarkets says caramel is the most widely used natural color in the beverage industry. On the other hand, associated health benefits with carotenoids make it an obvious choice for beverage manufacturers.

The increasing demand in the beverage industry - and more products in the market due to various advanced technologies - are triggering the market for natural colors and flavors in the beverage industry globally.

The natural colors market is expected to grow at more than two times that of synthetic food colors. Soft drinks, health drinks, nectar and flavored water are beverages that require addition of colors. MarketsandMarkets has projected the natural food colors market will reach $1.7 billion by 2020.

More than 20% of the projected market will be attributed to natural colors’ application in beverages. The pull towards clean label is quite evident as consumers carefully analyze the ingredients. This drives the continuous growth of the natural ingredients market, including natural colors and flavors. 

Beverage manufacturers are focusing on launching products made with vegetables and fruits as they are traditionally associated with a characteristic taste. The beverage coloring systems are stable and consistent throughout, from the point of specific seed selection to the availability of raw materials, from manufacturing to the time of final consumption.

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