Global demand for almonds is increasing, with snacking driving a lot of opportunities. China is the premier snack growth region, says Bill Morecraft, General Manager of Blue Diamond Almonds Global Ingredients Division.
Speaking with Stephen Daniells at the recent IFT Annual Meeting and Expo in Las Vegas, Morecraft said: “In the last four years China has grown from a 25 million pound (lb) market to a 250 million pounds, so growth by a factor of ten."
Can supply cope with demand?
“The California almond crop represents 80-85% of world almond production. Last year it increased by nearly 25% to two billion pounds. We expect the 2012 crop to be about two billion pounds again, but what that represents is a slow-down in the growth.
“We’ve experienced double-digit growth in global consumption over the last ten years and this next year it looks like our supply is going to be very close to what we used this year.”