Sweet treats are everyone’s favorite. Consumers around the world indulge in a variety of confectionery items to celebrate festivals and important life events. Confectionery includes food products that have high amounts of sugar and other sweeteners. Their texture, taste, and appearance are enhanced by adding ingredients like emulsifiers, stabilizers, and thickeners. Some popular confectionery items include frozen desserts, ice creams, sweet baked foods, chocolates, and hard-boiled candies, among others. Rising levels of living standards, urbanization, and demand for sugar-free confections for health-conscious consumers are the key factors elevating their market growth in India. The year 2022 saw the Indian confectionery market reach INR 338.2 Billion and according to reports, the market is expected to reach INR 485.9 Billion by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 6.3% during 2023-2028.
Indulgence without guilt
Amidst the rising concerns of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and obesity, the market is witnessing a growth in demand for sugar-free or healthy variants of confectioneries. Nirav Sampat, managing director, Vedic Pac-Systems, talked about the latest consumer demands, “New confectionery products such as milk-based toffee masses, eclairs, and bubble gum are showing “healthy” promise of growth. These products are viewed as better alternatives to hard-boiled confectionery.”
The market is also experiencing a rise in the number of clean-label, cruelty-free, vegan, organic, and sustainably sourced confectionery products that claim to have no chemical additives and lower amounts of allergens. To this, Nirav added, “Sugar-free is showing promise in the modern trade. However, it is not easy to break price barriers in semi-urban and rural markets.”
Trends and technology
According to Nirav, the latest trending products include lollipops with center filling, medicated hard-boiled candies, and milk-based recipes poised to grow fast. Talking about premium confectionery, he said, “New variants at higher price points of INR 2/pc and INR 5/pc are slowly entering the market. These are essentially center-filled products and striped products with lower sugar content.”
To keep up with consumer demands, confectionery manufacturers are using advanced equipment for more efficient production and focusing on shelf-life extension. Raghav Gupta, director, Kanchan Metals talked about the company’s efforts to provide the right technology to food companies, “We are focusing on developing automation solutions for customers looking to produce long shelf-life packaged cakes, wafers, and chocolates.”
Confectionery industry at Snack & BakeTec
At Snack & Bake Tec this year, a host of companies will display advanced technologies and equipment widely used in the confectionery industry. Visitors can drop by these companies’ stalls to discuss equipment utility and functions as per their needs. The much-awaited Snack & BakeTec, Inter FoodTech, and Pac MechEx to be held from 7-9 June 2023, at the Bombay Exhibition Center, Mumbai.
Buhler India offers equipment for shaping liquid chocolates into pralines and bars as well as coating wafers and cookies with chocolate. At the event, the company will exhibit unique solutions to mold chocolate in any shape and form. It offers technologies to produce cereal, protein, fruit, and nut bars, plain or enrobed with chocolate.
Standard Machinery Corporation supplies machinery and complete processing lines for chocolate and confectionery that will be displayed at the event. The company offers state-of-the-art technical innovations that provide minimal labor-oriented production, hygiene, and safety while easing storage and transportation considerations.
Matrix Process Equipment and Automation will display its food processing equipment with a specialized focus on Chocolate Molding Lines, Chocolate Melting System, Chocolate Enrobing System, Cereal Bar Lines, Roasting and Puffing Lines, Fried Oil Filtration System, Ingredient Transfer, and Batching Systems, Jaggery breaking and Syrup Preparation System and much more.
Kanchan Metals will display various food conveying and processing systems that integrate with imported processing lines to drive down costs.
At the Vedic Pac Systems’ booth, visitors can view systems for the processing of confectionery masses: Continuous and Batch cooking for various sugar-based masses, such as hard candy/jelly/fondant/toffee/caramel/lozenges from Chocotech and Nuova Euromec as well as Bar lines, tempering units & enrobers from Sollich.
All the participants are waiting to display their latest offerings on the much-awaited platform that offers them great visibility and networking options.
Mukhtar Pathan, director-Sales, VA Exhibitions, the organizers of Snack & BakeTec, Inter FoodTech & Pac MechEx, said, “With the colossal response from the inaugural edition of Snack & Baketec and its concurrent trade fairs, Inter FoodTech and Pac MechEx, the upcoming edition will have more in store for all the stakeholders of food & beverage processing industry. I invite all the food industry professionals to the event to make the most of this opportunity to share knowledge, connect, and experience the latest technology.”