New Food Industries Toward a New Level of Sustainable Supply: Success Stories, Business Models, and Strategies

New Food Industries Toward a New Level of Sustainable Supply: Success Stories, Business Models, and Strategies

Vittorio D'Aleo (University of Messina, Italy), Francesco D'Aleo (University of Messina, Italy) and Roberta Bonanno (University of Messina, Italy)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-8063-8.ch021
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“Novel foods” indicates all those foods that do not fall within the traditional western diet. The authors underline that there is an important economic potential linked to this new sector. After having introduced the topic by identifying what is meant by new food, food sustainability, and entrepreneurship in this sector, the analysis focuses on the qualitative aspects of novel foods. The authors emphasize the advantages of these sources, their qualities, and the impact on the environment. In this chapter, the authors demonstrate that novel food sources can be a substitute for other food that require production processes, and thus make a big impact on the environment. After figuring out the advantages of novel food sources, the authors analyze some success stories from the companies that already operate in this area. They also investigate existing business models on the novel food market and the way they operate and create wealth. Summarizing the results of their research, the authors underline the economic potential of the new foods exploitation in the Mediterranean area.
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Before evaluating the aspects of the new supply in detail, it is important to underline the food market trends to better understand the perspective of the global market. Therefore, the authors emphasize the following trends:

  • Healthier food. More responsibility regards to animal welfare and land sustainability and more attention to the environment (environmentally friendly).

  • Consumer needs access to detailed and clear information.

  • Necessity to adapt the alimentation to the lifestyle of everyone.

  • More and more consumers would like to feel connected to nature using some natural products.

  • Homemade products named “0-kilometer foods” which are provided from their homeland.

  • New consumption experience and opportunity to test new flavors like artisanal treats.

  • Increase in home-cooking and home entertaining.

World economic traders could try to approach to these new trends and to expand existing market across new consumption occasions. New start-up companies related to “novel foods” should adapt their products to new market requirements.

Novel Foods Market

According to the ISPRA (Brookes, 2007), the global market for novel foods is actually about €35 billion (sales volume), most of which derived from food ingredients with the new primary molecular structure or genetically modified. The European Union (EU) represents about 40% of global novel foods market, an equivalent of €14 billion in sales. Enterprises related to the novel foods sector employ about 90,000 people worldwide. Research and development (R&D) are the most important costs, and novel foods enterprises usually spend an average of 3-5% of their turnover on R&D (range between 2% and 8%). Even if an enterprise wants to increase its profit it has to wait for a longer period of time (4-10 years) compared to the companies in traditional foods sector (1-3 years), because novel foods business is related to innovations. Life expectancy is better for new products (5-15 years) than those which are on the market already (1-3 years) (Hepburn et al., 2008).

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