As the global population is mushrooming, the ability of agriculture to support the growing food demand has been a concern for generations and continues to be high on the global policy agenda. Although the world produces enough food to feed everyone, yet nearly 1 billion people remain hungry. Without any doubt, the challenge of eradicating hunger seems intimidating since attempts at both national and international levels have not proved very fruitful in the past. The figure below depicts the global population trend for the period 2010-2019:
Global Population Data, in Billion, From 2010 to 2019
Source: The World Bank Group
According to the World Bank Group data, the global population has surged from 6.922 billion in 2010 to 7.674 billion in 2019. After decades of steady decline, the global number of people who suffer from hunger has slowly been on the rise since 2015. According to the United Nations, an estimated 821 million people in the world globally suffered from hunger in 2018. Moreover, the world is also not on the track to achieve Zero Hunger by 2030 and with the continuation of this trend, the number of people suffering with hunger is projected to exceed 840 million by 2030. According to the World Food Programmer, 135 million people suffer from acute hunger majorly due to climate change, man-made conflicts, and economic downturns. The recent pandemic outbreak caused due to COVID-19 is further projected to double this figure, putting an additional 130 million people at the risk of suffering acute hunger by the end of 2020.
All this is putting more and more pressure to raise agricultural productivity and sustainable food production which are crucial to help eradicate the risks of global hunger. This, in turn, is escalating the demand for vegetable seeds, thereby driving the global vegetable seed market growth. The figure below shows the market size of the global vegetable seed market for the year 2019 and 2025:
Global Vegetable Seed Market Size, US$ Billion, 2019 and 2025
Source: Knowledge Sourcing Intelligence
According to the Knowledge Sourcing Intelligence analysis, the global vegetable seed Market is projected to grow at a CAGR 6.26% throughout the forecast period, reaching the total market size of US$ 9.271 billion by 2025 from US$ 6.440 billion in 2019.
People nowadays are getting more inclined towards the consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables. With rising incidence of chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases, people are increasing the consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables to remain fit and healthy. According to the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2019, obesity and overweight continue to surge in all regions of the world. According to the International Diabetes Foundation, approximately 463 million adults (age between 20 and 79 years) were living with diabetes in 2019 worldwide and this figure is projected to rise to 700 million by 2045. According to the World Health Organization, there were around 2 billion adults who were overweight in 2016. If this current trend continues, this figure is estimated to reach to 2.7 billion adults by 2025, as per the World Obesity Federation statistics. As the healthcare expenditure on the treatment of these chronic diseases, people are switching to healthy lifestyle which involves more and more fresh fruits and vegetables as well as home-made meals. Furthermore, emerging popularity of vegan diet is another factor that is driving the demand for fruits and vegetables. Rising expansion of grocery and departmental stores have also been responding to this burgeoning consumer spending on fruits and vegetables by keeping exotic as well as local produce on their shelves. Thus, all these factors are also augmenting the demand for vegetables and thus, positively impacting the global vegetable seed market growth.
Another factor for the augmenting demand for vegetable seeds is the growing trade volume of vegetables across different regions and/or countries. According to the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) statistics, the United States imports of edible vegetables and certain roots & tubers from Mexico increased from US$4,871 million during 2012-14 to US$5,793 million during 2015-17. Supportive government policies to ramp up the export volume will continue to propel the global vegetable seeds market growth. The recent COVID-19 pandemic outbreak has, however, negatively impacted the export market. Market closures, global supply chain disruption, and temporary ban on or reduced air and sea freight services are some of the challenges for exporting vegetable growers during this global pandemic outbreak. According to the Global Trade Atlas data, the total value of vegetable exports experienced a decline of 8.7 percent from January to March 2020 from the corresponding period in 2019. In volume terms, total vegetable export volume dropped to 58,276 tonnes, representing a 12 percent fall over the same period.
However, this pandemic has also caused a sudden spike in the ‘packed’ fruits and vegetables which has surged the revenues of domestic agricultural sectors across different economies. With restaurants being shut down due to nationwide lockdowns and mandatory social distancing measures, people have increased their purchase of fresh vegetables to make delicious cuisines at homes. As many countries are experiencing tough economic situations, with declining income and rising unemployment levels, people are seeking staple vegetables instead of higher-value processed food items. Moreover, the consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables have also increased as people are constantly trying to keep up their immunity level by eating healthy in order to prevent themselves from catching this virus. As the current situation gets improved, economies will try to speed up the growth of the agricultural sector in order to start exporting the produce for achieving economic growth.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Anjali Joshi is a senior market research analyst at Knowledge Sourcing Intelligence. She oversees a team of analysts and is known for the quality of market intelligence she delivers to the clients which range from start-ups and Non-profit Organizations to Fortune 500 companies. Anjali’s keen understanding of international business and market dynamics, coupled with her years of experience working in this industry, allows her to analyse current and future trends across both global and clients’ target markets and help them in making informed decisions.