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World: Consumer demand for natural ingredients boosts stevia sales

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The global stevia market is projected to account for US$565.2 million of the overall sweetener market by 2020, registering a compound annual growth rate of 8.5% during the forecast period, according to a report by Future Market Insights (FMI).

Entitled Global Stevia Market Analysis & Opportunity Assessment, 2014 – 2020, the industry survey was conducted by FMI team with stevia manufacturers and distributors/retailers worldwide.

Findings of this survey indicate that 37.3% of manufacturer respondents indicated preference to grow their own ingredients; however, 13.6% of respondents say they will grow and also buy from a combination of sources.

According to FMI, on a rating of one to nine based on promising categories by application, the manufacturer respondents rated beverages the highest at 7.4, followed by table top sweetener at 6.6 and packaged food products at 6.2.

Geographically, industry respondents from Americas and Europe predominantly preferred stevia-based beverages whereas, industry respondents from Asia Pacific preferred stevia as an ingredient in table top sweeteners.

With respect to drivers of the stevia market, both manufacturer and distributor respondents offered highest rating to shift in consumer preference for natural ingredient products/low-calorie products.

Furthermore, through this survey it was concluded that on the basis of percentage usage, consumers falling under 45-years and above age group across all regions are the highest consumers of stevia products.

However, distributor respondents in Asia Pacific indicated that consumers in the 16 to 25 years age group are the highest consumers of stevia products.