The hydrocolloids market was valued at USD 9.7 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 12.6 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 5.3%. The growth of the hydrocolloids market is driven by factors such as the expansion of the processed food industry due to the increasing demand for convenience foods in regions such as the Asia Pacific, South America, and the Middle East & African. Apart from this, manufacturers are engaged in R&D to offer high-quality hydrocolloids due to its multi-functionality in the food industry.
The key players in the hydrocolloids market include Dupont (US), Ingredion (US), Cargill (US), Kerry (Ireland), Archer Daniels Midland Company (US), Palsgaard (Denmark), Darling Ingredients (US), CP Kelco (US), Ashland (US), BASF (Germany), Tate & Lyle (UK), Glanbia (Ireland), Fuerst Day Lawson (UK), Koninklijke DSM N.V (Netherlands), and Nexira (France) are the players that hold a significant share in the hydrocolloids market.
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DRIVER: Rise in consumption of premium food & beverage products
The increase in consumer preference for convenience foods indirectly contributes to the rise in demand for hydrocolloids required as stabilizers, texturants, binding agents, viscosity, and thickening agents in these convenience food products. The processed food market is driven by the greater need for convenience due to the busy lifestyles of consumers. This, in turn, increases the demand for hydrocolloids. The hydrocolloids industry has a positive outlook due to high growth in the food processing industry. A leading food journal estimates that about 35% of the American population consumes at least three prepared convenience food products in a week, and this is projected to grow to about 40% of the population in the future. The expenditure of the American population on home-prepared meal ingredients decreased from roughly 70% of the total expenditure in the 1960s to 53% in the 2000s, with increasing expenditure on convenience foods. Consumer preference in emerging economies such as China, India, Japan, Africa, and countries of the Middle East have gradually transitioned from traditional home-made breakfasts and snacking meals to ready-to-eat products, custom quick meals, and one-dish meals over the last couple of decades.
OPPORTUNITY: Increase in investments in research & development
Hydrocolloids are largely utilized in processed and convenience foods. These products require food additives such as hydrocolloids that impart proper texture, viscosity, mouthfeel, and shape to the food. The wide application of hydrocolloids in food has led to the introduction of new procedures or complex steps in food processing. Food manufacturers are adopting sophisticated food processing methods and are demanding new hydrocolloids that can impart the desired functions.
Companies are investing highly in R&D to adjust the formulation of existing products and cater to customer requirements. Companies are innovating new products to benefit their customers. The rise in health concerns & the resultant consumer demand for healthy products and the requirement of custom-made hydrocolloid blends drive companies to invest more in research & development. Manufacturers are also thriving to develop cost-saving hydrocolloids that may enable them to manage the use of costly raw materials and other additives.
The gelatin segment is estimated to be the largest in 2020
The hydrocolloids market, by type, is estimated to be dominated by the gelatin segment. The usage of gelatin as a gelling agent is projected to grow due to the increasing need for emulsifiers in the food & beverage industry in major markets such as Germany, the UK, and France. It is commonly used in candies, desserts, marshmallows, and ice creams. Gelatin functions as a texturant, gelling agent; it releases flavor and imparts proper mouthfeel to food products.
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The food & beverage segment is estimated to be the largest in 2020
The hydrocolloids market, by application, is estimated to be dominated by the food & beverage segment. Hydrocolloids are used in food & beverages to increase viscosity, ensure particle suspension, improve mouthfeel, and enable fiber addition. These polymers are widely used in many food formulations to improve their quality and shelf life.
The North America is projected to account for the largest market share during the forecast period
North America is a dominant region in the global hydrocolloids market. Factors influencing its market dominance include the high demand for functional dairy products, convenience foods, higher per capita consumption of baked goods , and presence of major players. Consumers in the US are calorie-conscious due to which low-calorie and low-fat foods are popular in the country. The increasing prevalence of obesity and cardiac diseases has led consumers to demand natural and low-calorie food products. Food manufacturers are therefore concentrating on the application of natural hydrocolloids and their function as fat replacers.