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Countdown to fdt-Africa 2016 expo

The food and beverage market in the entire Southern African region is experiencing continuous growth with South Africa leading the way. The region’s southernmost country accounts for more than 40% of Africa’s economic strength. Naturally, that is also noticeable in the food and beverage industry. Growth forecasts for the beverage industry between now and 2019 are positive.

According to the Food Processing Machinery and Packaging Machinery Association in the VDMA (German Engineering Federation), growth in the overall beverage industry is expected to be as high as 13% during the next few years. In the case of non-alcoholic beverages, growth could be as high as 19%. Juices (growth rate 29%), bottled water (25%), concentrates (51%) and sport and energy drinks (35%) in particular are contributing to this development. With a forecast growth rate of 6%, alcoholic beverages also contribute to these positive results (Source: Euromonitor International 6/2015, VDMA).

The craft-beer trend is becoming ever more popular in Southern Africa. Microbreweries brew their own types of beer and market them. The growing circle of fans for these beers is increasing pressure on leading manufacturers, which are now being forced to find new ways to keep their customers and, in doing so, contribute to growth in the beer industry in the region.

South Africa’s wine industry is also growing and is on its way to becoming a global leader.

The constantly growing dairy industry and the sectors for yoghurt and milk-based drinks in particular, round out the results for Southern Africa and demonstrate that the beverage industry is on the right track.

In addition, increasing urbanization and a constantly growing middle class mean that the growth prognoses for the food sector is positive. Consumer behaviour is changing. Baked goods, crackers, snack bars and sweet and salty snacks are enjoying increased popularity. Market researchers expect double-digit increases in per-capita consumption for the next few years (Source: VDMA).

A significant increase in demand for convenience products and growing health awareness indicate that the South African food market is in the midst of transition and that solutions must be found that meet consumers’ needs.

Despite the positive growth prognoses, the Southern African market has to tend with certain issues that need to be solved. However, these challenges should be seen as an opportunity, state-of-the-art technologies, give the industry a chance to continue improving the market and form part of its positive development.

For example, manufacturing food and beverages is particularly energy intensive. It also requires a great deal of water, both for the processes themselves and for cleaning the plants and machinery. Water is becoming a scarce resource in Southern Africa. This water shortage, the ongoing issues with electricity and planned introduction of a carbon tax are resulting in cost increases that food and beverage manufacturers have a hard time passing on to consumers.

These reasons are why the focus now is on investing in plants and machinery that require less water and energy.

The topic of packaging is also relevant for the industry. Increasingly busy lifestyles have consumers reaching for products that are innovative and easy to use and there is now an emphasis on the fact that packaging should be recyclable.

food & drink technology Africa, which takes place at Gallagher Convention Centre on September 14 and 15 will showcase exhibitors who will have solutions on display for dealing with resources responsibly.

The trade fair will feature industry solutions that are tailor made to the needs of the Southern African market. food & drink technology Africa is a trade fair “By Africa, for Africa” and focuses on innovations and new developments that can offer companies added value.

As a “seismograph” for the African food and beverage processing, packaging and logistic industry, food & drink technology Africa is well on its way to establishing itself as the leading industry platform for Southern Africa.

Leading manufacturers such as GEA Africa, Pentair Food & Beverage, Ecolab, KHS Manufacturing and Pyrotec use it to showcase innovative ideas and solution based approaches that meet needs and necessities of the market.

A full list of exhibiting companies can be found on the website.

Visitors attending the trade fair can also look forward to a full supporting program.

An Exhibitor Forum will feature insights that deal with the needs and challenges of the Southern African market.

Leading industry experts will present visitors with practice-oriented case studies and panel discussions. Topics include “Resource efficient production: save water and energy”, “Solutions for the Brewery Industry”, “Latest trends in packaging for the food/beverage industry” and “Training”.

In addition, other highlights in the supporting program are the MicroBrew Symposium, organised by the VLB, which will take place a day before the trade fair on the 13 September and the introduction of the winners UniMicroBrew design competition, organised by SABMiller.

Pre-register for food & drink technology Africa online:

Pre-registration ensures free entrance to all trade visitors.