Nearing the end of 2023 encourages us to reassess what went well in production line operations, what we can improve, and what 2024 may bring to the food processing industry. Predicting the future is an impossible feat, but planning for it isn’t out of the question, especially when you have the right production line equipment to do so.
So what does 2024 hold for the food processing industry? It may be hard to guess, but we can look to 2023 and see how the industry changed. Food processing news regarding demand, inflation, and ingredient availability challenged food manufacturers worldwide, and it’s safe to say that these issues aren’t disappearing with the advent of the new year. In this article, we’ll explore these challenges more in-depth and how food manufacturers can prepare to handle them in 2024. We’ll also look at the 2024 food processing market and what labels can expect. Lastly, we’ll explore the food industry technology that has allowed labels to withstand the most difficult food industry challenges in 2023. Let’s begin with the headlines that shook the food processing industry this year.
Food Processing News
2023 was interesting for food processing news and industries worldwide, and 2024 will be no exception. Between increased demand, skyrocketing inflation, and ingredient shortages, food manufacturers had to adapt to the new food industry landscape.
Since 2022, the demand for frozen meals has increased. While an increase in demand is a great way to realize higher profits, meeting demand is only possible with equipment that facilitates a productivity rate increase. The demand for frozen and prepared meals has steadily increased since the start of the pandemic, and it’s plausible that the demand will continue to rise well into 2024. If your label is looking to invest in new equipment or expand production, we recommend finding equipment that can assemble products at high rates to meet this demand.
Another headline in food processing news this past year is record inflation. The pandemic is also part of the reason why the cost of goods and ingredients has increased. Just as customers have seen an increase in the cost of groceries and other goods, food manufacturers have noticed an increase in the price of ingredients. The increase in the cost of ingredients cuts into any bottom line, so companies have needed to find ways to conserve costs and ingredients where possible to maintain capital.
Companies in the food processing industry may have also struggled with ingredient shortages throughout 2023. Not only did consumers experience food shortages throughout the country, but food manufacturers found that some critical ingredients were scarce. To withstand these ingredient shortages, labels had to conserve ingredients so they could continue making great products for their customers. Luckily, these shortages were alleviated by the end of 2023, but their quick onset made production in the food processing industry challenging. Nevertheless, these shortages demonstrated just how quickly regular operations in food manufacturing can be disturbed. This means that food companies need to be ready to solve unexpected problems. Although ingredient shortages were an issue in 2023, 2024 can bring other challenges that companies need to prepare for.
Meeting demand, record inflation, and ingredient shortages were difficulties that faced the food processing industry, but how did food manufacturers overcome them? Different companies found different solutions, but one surefire way they surpassed these challenges was with automated food equipment. Let’s look at how automation provides relief and can help companies prepare for the 2024 food processing market.
Automation and the 2024 Food Processing Market
Companies can prepare for the 2024 food processing market with automation. Automated food equipment allows labels to meet high demand, withstand inflation, and survive ingredient shortages because the equipment is a direct solution to these challenges. Prepared meal labels can control the production rate with the equipment – especially with Quantum Equipment. This is exceptionally helpful for meeting the increased demand that’ll likely carry over into 2024.
Even though the ingredient shortages have quelled, increased prices aren’t dropping right away in 2024. However, Quantum automated food equipment helps brands overcome both challenges. Most models of Quantum equipment have ingredient reclaim systems that allow brands to save and reapply unused ingredients that didn’t make it onto any products. This feature saves companies on ingredients and their cost, which provides them the ability to withstand ingredient shortages and inflation.
Although we don’t know exactly what the 2024 food processing market may look like, it’s best to be prepared to solve problems that the food processing industry experienced in 2023. Now, let’s take a look at the food industry technology that’s available at Quantum to overcome these challenges.
Food Industry Technology
The automated technology in the food processing industry has allowed labels to overcome difficulties and surpass their competitors. At Quantum, we offer a range of automated food equipment solutions for pizza, prepared meals, and bakery production lines that streamline assembly without sacrificing quality. Here are some of the types of equipment we make at Quantum:
- Conveyor Systems
- Sauce Applicators
- Cheese/IQF Ingredient Applicators
- Meat/Pepperoni Slicers
- Dry/Granular Ingredient Applicators
The automated food equipment we make at Quantum is versatile and has a range of customizable settings that your company can set to meet brand and production requirements. We work closely with our clients so that their food industry technology works for them. The 2024 market doesn’t have to cause uncertainty. With Quantum, your company can be confident that it will have the tools it needs to overcome anything the market brings in the new year.
Prepare for the Future of the Food Industry with Quantum
Quantum automated food equipment is built to anticipate future needs. The higher versatility of our selection of automated food equipment allows brands to both exceed present demand and plan for future trends. Contact us today to find out which of our solutions can transform your production line and prepare your brand for the future of the food processing industry.