Industrial team of Worker and engineer discussing at machine in factory

Plant construction projects in the food and beverage industry grew by more than 9% in 2015, according to Food Engineering magazine’s 39th Annual Plant Construction Survey. The survey lists planned, in-process, and completed projects that are valued at more than $1 million.

Below are more details.

General statistics

  • Reportable construction projects grew 9.3% in 2015, representing their highest level in 10 years.
  • 32% of these projects were new greenfield projects, an increase of 0.45% over 2014.
  • 68% were renovations or expansions, an increase of 14% over 2014.

Alcoholic beverage projects and dedicated distribution centers

  • The number of alcoholic beverage projects has increased steadily, with almost 10% more in 2015 than the previous year.
  • At the same time, the number of dedicated food and beverage distribution centers decreased 11.32%, and distribution center projects were down by 3.5% from the 10-year average.

Industry trends for 2016

Survey respondents identified the following industry trends for 2016, listed in descending order of importance:

  1. General automation (e.g., process, including building automation)
  2. Food safety/FSMA
  3. Renovation/expansion to meet modern standards
  4. Personnel safety/welfare/training
  5. Robotics in packaging/pallets
  6. Energy efficiency
  7. Non-GMOs, organics, gluten free, innovative foods
  8. Hygienic design/sanitary design/CIP
  9. Separation of spaces (e.g., raw and cooked)
  10. Flexibility in lines/adding lines
  11. Efficiency (operating)
  12. Innovation in equipment design to keep up with food innovation.

For more discussion of the survey, see the full report.

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