Authored by Prerna Kalra, CEO and Co-founder of Daalchini Technologies
F&B industry is one of the oldest industries but is full of innovation and creativity. It includes all the companies involved in transforming raw materials into consumer food products. The F&B industry comprises restaurants, cafes, fast-food joints, pubs, catering businesses, food transportation services, etc.
It is one of the largest industries that is moving towards higher-value-added products and thus, has sparked investors’ interest. In the rapidly changing world, customers’ priorities are also shifting and what has taken the front seat are new demands for better, healthier, and affordable products. New technology has paved the paved for entrepreneurs to jump in and build next-generation brands.
As per Tracxn, since 2014, there have been 23 investments totaling $167 million in offline F&B space whereas food tech attracted investments of $92 million.
These investments and advanced technology have given birth to new ways of serving foods. One of the most accepted and celebrated phenomena is cloud kitchens. With different food delivery apps, these kitchens have gained huge popularity. Other than this, food vending machines are new shops from where people can get all their favorite meals in a contactless manner.
These recent developments in the F&B industry have helped it in surviving the pandemic. The industry has not only managed to surpass the pandemic but has been back with a bang. Technology in the F&B industry.
The F&B sector has moved increasingly from imitation to innovation. Technology revolutionizing food and beverage as the Covid-19 crisis accelerates the pace of robotics and AI. AI allows companies to predict sales and tailor inventory to demand, save money and reduce waste. Not only that, it helped companies to manage their supply chain and make the process transparent and hustle-free.
AI has touched another level of height in the F&B industry. Today, AI can help you in selecting the best quality vegetables. Yes, you heard it right. Software, sensors, and cameras can sort raw materials based on their best final use. Food sorting machines can monitor the size, shape, and color of vegetables and can even tell you the fat of meat.
Robots are also gaining attention. They are rapidly a part of the kitchens as ‘Robo-chef’. The global food robotics market was valued at $1.5 billion in 2029 and is expected to reach nearly $3 billion by 2027, according to Reports and Data. If one day a robot rings your doorbell to deliver your food, I hope you won’t be surprised.
Future of the F&B industry:
The future of the F&B in the industry seems to be bright and prosperous. The total organized Indian F&B industry is expected to be Rs. 4 lakh crore market as of 2019 and projected to grow by 2.5 times to Rs. 10 lakhs crore by 2025.
There are many new projects in the pipeline that ensures a gate glorious future for the F&B industry. Delhi’s F&B industry is planning a nightlife circuit by 2041. DDA’s draft master plan for 2041 aims to establish a special nightlife circuit and involves restaurants and eateries in the process.
Latest trends in the F&B industry
- Self–service kiosks:
‘Grab and go’ trend is the new normal. It is gaining popularity as it saves time. Self-service kiosks are also popping up rapidly. They are the best in terms of hygiene. Moreover, these 24*7 kiosks have become a great source of revenue at a marginal distribution cost.
- Contactless and cashless:
Going cashless and paying by scanning QR, not only ensures zero contact but also saves your time. It ensures minimal errors and incidents of theft and optimizes transparency.
The pace with which the F&B industry is flourishing will give a boost to tourism as well as employment. The tourist will get the opportunity to enjoy the country that is known for its food and as it is expanding it will provide employment employ.