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EQUIPMENT

Non-alcoholic beverage mkt size expected to grow at 4.4% CAGR till ’22
Saturday, 04 November, 2017, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
M K Tripathi, Ajay Yadav and R S Jadam
Functional beverages play an important role in our everyday lives. They help keep us hydrated, prevent and help address health conditions, aid in our athletic performance or simply contribute to our overall nutritional well-being.

Non-alcoholic beverages market size was valued at $1,548 billion in 2015, and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 4.4% to reach $2,090 billion by 2022. The non-alcoholic beverages industry produces a broad range of beverage products, including various carbonated soft drinks, syrup concentrates, juices, energy and sport drinks, teas, coffee, and water products.

The industry currently faces challenges with regard to addressing the health and nutritional benefits of its products. Additionally, the purchase of raw ingredients such as water and sugar is among the industry’s largest expenses and creates supply challenges in areas considered to be water-stressed and/or exposed to shifting weather patterns associated with climate change.

From the past decade, consumers have become more knowledgeable and are now demanding for natural ingredients in various food and beverage products; creating a tremendous challenge for beverage companies to reformulate products in order to fulfil this new preference. Consumers are now focussing their purchasing priority on natural ingredients and health labels over cost. This changing landscape is affecting global consumer markets and is demanding more innovation in the beverage sector than ever before. Already we have seen brands introduce ‘diet’ and ‘zero’ products to satisfy the ever changing consumer.

Advancements in product development processes and technology coupled with beverage manufacturers embracing open innovation, is paving the path for processors to get functional beverages to store shelves faster. This presents a great opportunity for beverage manufacturers, as they can now react to shifts in consumer demands much quicker.

In addition, due to rapid advancements in taste masking and microencapsulation, beverage manufacturers have a wider selection of nutrients to choose from. In virtually every region of the world, functional beverages are an important part of the lifestyle for each diverse culture. Asian countries tend to favour dairy-based beverages, where the US and Europe favour more of a range of products spanning from enhanced waters to juices. Mexico and South America have seen rapid growth in sports drinks as well as energy beverage consumption.

The beverage experience in today’s marketplace is completely different than 10 or even five years ago. The manner in which beverages are consumed is just as interesting as what functional ingredients are in it. Today consumers have their choice of a traditional eight ounce or 12 ounce beverage, powder mix with added nutrients, a two ounce shot with a potent mixture of nutrients, and the list goes on.

Consumers are increasingly looking to beverages to play new roles in their diets and health routines. Drinkable breakfasts and the "snackification" of beverages are fueled by consumer interest in nutrition and performance drinks that act as meal replacements and guilt-free snacks.

All these innovations lead to coming up of new innovative products in beverage segment such as low calories, energy and non-dairy beverages. An energy drink is a type of beverage containing stimulant drugs, usually including caffeine, which is marketed as providing mental and physical stimulation (marketed as "energy," but distinct from food energy). They may or may not be carbonated and many also contain sugar or other sweeteners, herbal extracts, taurine, and amino acids. Low caloric drinks are the drinks that provide very low nutrition or having no nutritive value (Table 1).

Table 1. Renowned brands manufacturing functional beverages
Beverage Brand Name Products
Low calories Coca Cola Diet Coke
  Pepsi Diet Pepsi
Energy  Red Bull Red Bull sugar-free, Red Bull zero calories
  Monster Java Monster, Monster hydro
  Rockstar Rockstar Purezero, Rockstar Punched
Dairy  Amul Amul matta, Lassi
  Yilli Byebye
  Yakult Yakult probiotic drink
Non-dairy Tropicana (PepsiCo) Fruit beverage
  Minute Maid (Coca Cola) Fruit beverage


Energy Drinks
Energy beverages originated in Japan in the 1960s to help the salaried class work long hours and then made their way into America in 1997 and are now gaining traction in the United Kingdom, Brazil and India. And what was once contained to just the beverage category has now spread to other product delivery vehicles such as confectionery, bars, juices and cereal. However, the energy beverage category is arguably the most personalised of any other product application – featuring energy drinks for men, women and as an expression of virtually anything associated with delivering energy.

Machineries Associated with Beverages Lines
Successful beverage production requires getting the most out of raw materials and maintaining desired end-product characteristics through safe, cost-effective and sustainable multi-stage processing (Fig.1).

Fig.1. Multistage processing
Washing Equipment
Different types of equipment are available for washing of fruits and vegetables for preparation of non-dairy functional drinks. Tender fruits are usually washed with a fine overhead spray of water, while the fruits travel on a continuous woven wire belt. On small-scale processing plants washing is carried out in cement or galvanised iron tanks.
Sorting Equipment
In large factories, a continuous broad belt, made of woven metal, is generally employed for sorting the raw materials such as fruits. In smaller factories, however, batch sorting will be sufficient.

Pulping/Grinding Equipment
There are two types of extractions. In the first case, the fruits are crushed and pressed continuously in one operation. In the second case, the fruits are crushed or cut into small pieces or comminuted in a mill, and these are subsequently pressed in a suitable press. Hammer mills, Grating mills, Crusher are generally used for grinding purpose.

Decanter
A high solid stream can be partially clarified using decanters and finishers. Both pieces of equipment operate on the principle of a spinning central cone, drum, or set of paddles pushing the juice through a screen of some type. The unit is typically mounted horizontally, and throughput is relatively high. Total suspended solids may be reduced to 1% or less during operation, depending upon characteristics of the feed stream and operating conditions of the separator.

Filtration Equipment
Finely suspended particles in the juice are removed with special equipment known as filter press. Filter presses are available with various designs and capacities. The filtering media may be finely woven cloth, canvas, fibre, asbestos pads, cotton or wood pulp discs, porous porcelain wares and so on. The frame and filter press is highly effective for clarification of lime juice required for the preparation of lime juice cordial.

Blending
To prepare the raw beverages, blending is an important function; the proper blended beverages can only maintain the quality of the end-product. Generally sugar syrup and required quantity of water with the respective ingredients are blended for a preset time. The blending of the product needs to be done carefully to avoid air dissolving with the product while blending. Hence the stirrer needs to be designed accordingly. Some products may not be agitated with stirrers, and such cases jet mixing is adopted.

Homogeniser
Homogenisation is a process which makes the blended beverages having uniform quality. It is not process part of the beverage processing but, product specific process where fibrous juices/pulps like mango, guava are ingredients.

Storage Tank
Storage tank is to keep the blended and homogenised beverages. This intermediate storage becomes essential to have a constant feed to the process/pasteurisation plant. The design and construction of these tanks are as important as other equipment in the process line.

Deaerator
Freshly extracted and screened juice contain large amount of oxygen, which should be removed before packing. Most of the air is present on the surface of the juice and some is dissolved in it. The air as well as other gases are removed by subjecting the fresh juice to a high vacuum. This method is highly expensive due to the vacuum creation. The equipment used for the removal of oxygen from the fruit juice is called deaerator. The deaerated juice is heated in flash pasteurisation equipment.

Flash Pasteuriser/Rapid Pasteuriser
In this equipment, the juice is heated rapidly to a temperature of about 5.5°C higher than the pasteurisation temperature and kept at this temperature for about 10-60 second. By this technique, the loss of flavour and vitamin destruction is minimum and the juice keeps a uniformly cloudy appearance.

Decanter
Fruit juices are made from fruit pulp/concentrate. Artificial sugar may or may not be added to the juice extracted.

Players manufacturing dairy and non-dairy beverages
In Asia, different market players offer a wide range of processing plants for dairy, non-dairy beverages. Some of the industries involved in selling are listed in Table 2:

Name of the Company

Country Name

Tetrapack

Sweden

Alfa Laval Corporate AB

Sweden

Packaging solutions

India

Jiangsu Zhongyin Machinery Co., Ltd

China

Shanghai Ok Machinery Co., Ltd

China

Sunman Engineering Inc.

India

Sai Enterprises

India

Master Food Tech

India

Weishu Machinery Technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd

China



Quality Standards/Formulation Challenges
One of the keys to a beverage manufacturer’s success is its dedication to quality. Delivering on the safety and the label promise is critical. And given the heightened awareness and public concern over contamination and sub-par product performance issues, it is critical for beverage manufacturers to align themselves with suppliers that can provide quality ingredients coupled with superior manufacturing standards. It is imperative that a beverage manufacturer works with a qualified supplier that has diligently crafted processes and programme standards for the development and manufacturing of nutrient premixes.

Some of the qualifications to keep in mind when evaluating a supplier: • Comprehensive Certificate of Analysis with every batch of premixes that test all active ingredients including microbiology; • Adherence to strict dietary codes, including but not limited to Kosher and Halal • Thorough allergen and environmental monitoring programmes; • Compliance with cGMP, GMA-safe, GMO-free; • HACCP Programme; • FDA Bioterrorism; • Complete traceability transparency.

(Tripathi is principal scientist, Yadav is scientist and Jadam is research fellow, ICAR- Central Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Bhopal. They can be contacted at manoj.tripathi1@icar@gov.in)
 
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