Fi India & Hi and ProPak India begins in Bengaluru

Opens doors to $535 billion food ingredients, packaging, and processing industry

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FI India Hi & ProPak India 7
The show brings together 250 leading exhibitors, more than 1000 brands, 35 speakers, and 7,000 visitors

The 16th edition of the Food Ingredients India & Health Ingredients (Fi India & Hi) and the fourth edition of ProPak India by Informa Markets kickstarted on 21 September at the Bangalore International Exhibition Centre (BIEC) in Bengaluru, Karnataka. 

The show provides a unique opportunity for all the stakeholders to discuss the food ingredients and packaging ecosystem and emerging trends in these sectors. 

The show brings together the country’s leading food and beverage ingredients suppliers and specialists in research and development, production, and packaging to showcase the most diverse range of new and innovative ingredients and services.

This year’s edition is the first in South India and saw participation from 250 leading exhibitors, more than 1000 brands, 35 speakers, and 7000 visitors from across the industry. It reaffirms the need and focus of Fi India & Hi and ProPak India 2022 as an industry event to boost and facilitate the food and health ingredients and the packaging sectors. 

Dignitaries such as Alok Kumar Srivastava, president, Association of Food Scientists & Technologists India (AFSTI); Nilesh Lele, president, Chamber for Advancement of Small and Medium Businesses (CASMB); Alessandro Liberatori, trade commissioner, Italian Trade Agency; Chandrasekhar Rajagopalan, president, Indian Flexible Packaging and Folding Carton Manufacturers (IFCA); Yogesh Mudras, managing director, Informa Markets in India; Rahul Deshpande, senior group director, Informa Markets in India; and Julien Bonvallet, group brand director at Informa Markets were present at the inauguration ceremony of the co-located B2B platforms for the food, health, packaging and processing industries. 

Key exhibitors include Brenntag Ingredients (India), Synthite Industries, Keva Flavour, Dksh, Imcd, Kerry Group, Bio-Gen Extracts, Plant Lipids, Matrix Flavours & Fragrances India, Hilda Automation, Spookfish Innovations, Vaxom Packaging, Italian Trade Agency, Swiss Pac, and Gandhi Automations among others. 

The expos are primarily supported by industry associations such as the Association of Food Scientists & Technologists India (AFSTI); All India Food Processors’ Association (AIFPA), Indian Flexible Packaging & Folding Carton Manufacturers Association (IFCA); Authentication Solution Providers’ Association (ASPA); Chamber for Advancement of Small and Medium Businesses (CASMB), SIES School of Packaging; Indian Institute of Food Processing Technology (IIFPT), and International partners such as Mintel.

Addressing the opportunities in this sector, Yogesh Mudras said, “The Indian food industry is poised for exponential growth, currently growing at a CAGR of 11%, with a projected output of US $535 billion by 2025. This high-growth and high-profit sector has emerged due to its immense potential for value addition, particularly within the food processing industry. Consumers’ awareness of ingredients, changing food habits, consumption patterns, low production costs, and ever-changing diet fads, food preferences, and hygiene aspects of food packaging have significantly contributed to the boom in food and health ingredients, processing, and packaging industries. 

Fi India &Hi and ProPak India give our exhibitors and buyers an opportunity to network in person, showcase, grow their business, educate the market with the latest industry intelligence, and discover future trends that will dictate the course of these industries in the coming years. This is the first for both the expos in South India, and we are thrilled to see the industry support and the growth in exhibitor participation. We look forward to another successful Fi India & Hi and ProPak India,” Mudras said. 

Talking about the food ingredients industry, Srivastava said,We welcome you all to the city of gardens, which has now become a buzzing city of entrepreneurs. We are holding this event for the first time in South India and hence we must compliment the entire team for putting this show together. This event would catalyze and propagate the networking of all stakeholders for their mutual benefit. AFSTI would like all stakeholders at the event to connect with us and help make India a global hub for Food Ingredients, considering the changing geopolitical scenario in the background of the pandemic. The city is also the hub for startups with the need for an interdisciplinary approach to accelerate the growth of the industry. I am sure that the event will help in networking between the various stakeholders and with this would like to also congratulate the organizers for bringing the trade show to South India.”

In the next 30 years, the world will add more than 1.5 billion people, and we all know who will feed this population, Nilesh Lele, president, the Chamber for Advancement of Small and Medium Businesses, said.

Food security is also an issue where India can easily become the food factory of the world. The agriculture and food industry in India is valued at around $450 billion and growing at 12-14%, much faster than the economy. I am excited to meet and network with the exhibitors and other participants at the trade fair. The other aspect of our work is to promote and help MSMEs grow, which will also be another session by itself at the event,” Lele said.

Highlighting the importance of packaging, Rajagopalan said, “We as an association largely operate in North India and in Mumbai, and it has been an eye-opening experience for us to come down South. As IFCA, we are a non-profit organization, which is over five decades old and existed when there was no organized packaging industry. Our endeavor is to give a voice to this end-user industry, especially in areas such as food packaging.  We roughly represent about 82% of the Indian converters in value terms, and our association with ProPack is very old and we continue to look forward to associating with the organizers in their future shows as well.”

Liberatori of the Italian Trade Agency said, “I would like to thank Informa Markets for the opportunity to be a part of this event and would also like to congratulate them for the commendable job done in bringing the event to this fruitful outcome. As the Trade Commissioner of the Embassy of Italy, and as a Governmental agency, it is one of our responsibilities to support businesses abroad, and packaging is an imperative part of every industry be it necessities to luxury.

The pandemic brought out the importance of packaging and its consequence on health and hygiene. The Italian industry turned over more than US $8.2 billion in 2021 in packaging, with a high propensity to export. Also, over 50% of all packaging and wrapping machines in the world are either Italian or German. Hence our Trade Commission in partnership with the Packaging Association has organized a special Italian Pavilion with the top eight manufacturers of packaging in Italy. We thank the organizers for giving us this opportunity to showcase the best in Italian packaging to India,” Liberatori said.

Food remains an integral part of Indian culture; each country’s region has its unique cuisine. The Covid-19 pandemic accelerated a significant shift in food habits, including consumer buying preferences, consumption patterns, and overall behavior. Greater awareness of the possible health problems related to particular foods has led to the growth of demand for health and wellness products and ingredients. These trends have created a vast spectrum for the use of ingredients. 

Alongside the exhibition, the expertly curated conference has been envisaged to bring forth innovations in the food ingredients domain by brands, entrepreneurs, and manufacturers in the food industry with an opportunity to seek critical insights into the rapid expansion, challenges, and market snapshot of the ingredients sector. 

The sessions include topics such as Food fortification and its impact to overcome malnutrition, Nutri-Cereals (Millets): Natural super foods as part of a healthy diet & Flavoring solutions for them, How India can suffice its need for value-added plant-based food ingredients? Health Ingredients, Health Supplements and Sports Nutrition, Food derived bioactive peptides and their health-promoting functions, Digestion and absorption, Food sector start-ups: Saga of success. Experience sharing by successful enterprises, Packaging regulations and Safety evaluation for food packaging materials, Trends in Active and smart food packaging, Sustainability in Packaging – Present Scenario & Way Forward Packaging Optimization – Tackling Functionality, Efficiency, and Cost.  

Another key highlight was the supporting features at the expos, such as an innovative product showcase, live demonstrations, and fund quest, wherein unique start-up companies will get an opportunity to tap investors by participating and presenting their plans and innovation at Fund Quest. 

The expos will showcase food flavors, colors, enzymes, additives/natural ingredients, soya products, herbs, spices & seasonings, starches and gaur gums, food fragrances, nutraceuticals, dietary supplements, plant extracts, proteins (fish, meat, poultry, milk & plants), sweeteners, antioxidants, pre-biotics / pro-biotics, encapsulated ingredients, vitamins & minerals, processing, and packaging machinery & equipment, to name a few. 

All the stakeholders of this industry include manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of food and beverage products, research & development and scientific professionals, consultants in manufacturing and microbiology, manufacturers of ingredients, food safety & quality services experts, training experts, and more. 

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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– Naresh Khanna

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