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Major new report on Food & Beverage sector published

22 May 2024
Image credit: Pixabay

A major new report which examines the global food & beverage sector is launched today in University College Cork (UCC).

The report - Key Trends Shaping Opportunities in the Food and Beverage Sector - shows that:

  • While up to 60% of Irish consumers want more sustainable products, only 30% are prepared to pay a higher price.
  • Demand for food produced to higher sustainability standards slipped during the recent food price spike.
  • Recent price inflation in major commodities, following the invasion of Ukraine, increased raw material costs for food and beverage companies but companies have come under pressure from governments and consumers to limit price increases for the final customer.
  • European food and beverage companies are set to invest €33 billion in 2024 and the European Food and Beverage sector is a global powerhouse with a combined market capitalisation (including food retail) of over €1trillion.
  • Supply chain disruptions, due to geo-political unrest and pirate activity in the Red Sea and problems in the Suez and Panama Canals, are prompting food and beverage companies to restructure their supply chains.
  • Medical developments such as the widespread availability of obesity drugs will be a major disruptor for the sector in 2024 with a potential decrease in demand for ultra-processed food.
  • Technological developments are likely to assist companies in facing challenges and major investment in artificial intelligence (AI) by food and beverage companies is expected. AI can deliver huge benefits for the sector from smarter farming systems, to optimised supply chains, dynamic pricing, personalised nutrition and new product and flavour development.

The report is launched today (Wednesday 22 May) at the third annual Food and Beverage Finance Summit at UCC, which is sponsored and held jointly by UCC, AIB, Goodbody, KPMG and A&L Goodbody.

The report is led by Professor Thia Hennessy of UCC  outlines  the key factors shaping investment in the sector. “The recent food price spike showed us that consumers and governments will resist food price increases and so food and beverage companies must continue to invest to deliver more environmentally sustainable and healthy products to the consumer at ever more affordable prices” states Professor Hennessy.

A copy of the report is available by clicking here 

University College Cork

Coláiste na hOllscoile Corcaigh

College Road, Cork T12 K8AF