A global long-term switch to automation, amid increasing pressure to cut costs and bolster efficiency, is likely to spur growth in the food robotics sector, Indian-based MarketsandMarkets has claimed in a new report.
The business-to-business insights firm said the global food robotics market was currently valued at $1.3bn – but would hit $2.5bn in the next five years.
Alongside increasing pressure to cut manufacturing costs, rising demand for packaged food and tough food safety regulations would fuel growth in the sector, it added.
The food robotics market is expected to increase by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 12% during the next five years, up to 2022.
Asia-Pacific is expected to have the highest CAGR during the next five years, according to MarketsandMarkets, thanks to rising demand for ready-to-eat food products.
The study also claimed consumption of packaged food products in Asia had increased, due to growing urbanisation, although the study did not provide any data to back up this claim. However, market research firm ReportLinker claimed in 2015 that packaged food would see the fastest growth in the Asia-Pacific region.
Unsurprisingly, Japan has the highest number of companies tipped to be major players in the market over the next five years. Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Fanuc Corporation, Seiko Epson Corporation, Yaskawa Electric Corporation and Mayekawa Mfg all feature in the top 10.
Two US companies also feature: Rockwell Automation and Bastian Solutions Incorporated.
The remaining three companies in the top 10 are European: Kuka, Germany; Staubli International, Switzerland; and Universal Robots A/S, Denmark.