The global water technology market in the food and beverage sector is set to almost double in size by 2020 as concerns over water scarcity increase, according to new research by business data research center Global Water Intelligence.
Drivers including rising demand coupled with a fixed supply, and companies’ increasing concern over environmental branding, will boost capital expenditure on water technology from $3.3 billion in 2011 to $6.0 billion in 2020, according to Water for Food & Beverage: Opportunities in Water Efficiency and Gaining Value from Wastewater. This represents a compound annual growth rate of 6.7 percent.
Other drivers for growth include rising demand for food and beverage products will lead to further demand for water technologies to provide safe and dependable water supplies, the report says.
Despite being highly fragmented, the food and beverage industry is still one of the top three industrial water markets, according to the report. European and North American water technology markets will show a sluggish growth, but emerging markets including China, India and Brazil will grow at double-digit rates, the report says.
However, the market’s future growth is not without challenges. The report warns that plant locations, processing steps, ingredients and final consumables vary significantly between subsectors such as meat, dairy and soft drinks and consequently, the water and wastewater needs will differ at the plant level, making universal adoption of technologies less straightforward.
Despite being open to new innovative technologies, food and beverage companies will still require technologies to be proven to minimize their operational risks.
Earlier this month Coca-Cola Enterprises, the sole licensed operator for products of The Coca-Cola Company in a number of Western European countries, released its 2011 corporate sustainability report that detailed, among other things, its progress on water consumption.
In 2011 the company reduced the amount of water it requires to make 1 liter of product, to 1.43 liters. This represents a reduction of 13 percent since 2007, and a 3.4 percent reduction year-on-year. At certain plants, CCE harnessed technologies such as sub-metering to monitor water use on a daily and weekly basis. The company also reviewed its cleaning processes and improved its rinse water consumption rate.
CCE has a 2020 target of using 1.2 liters of water to produce 1 liter of product.