Originating in parts of Mesoamerica, vanilla beans have been used for years as a premium flavoring and fragrance enhancing agent. Vanilla beans have found use in domestic and commercial food and beverage applications, along with niche uses in cosmetics, nutraceuticals and personal care products. This ingredient is also increasingly finding application in the field of drug development.
Currently, Madagascar is widely considered to be the largest producer of vanilla beans in the world, followed by China, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and Mexico. The increasing consumer preference for natural flavoring agents, and the growing awareness about health benefits that can be derived from the vanilla beans are key factors that are expected to drive the rising consumption of this ingredient for the foreseeable future. In addition, the market can also be substantially impacted by factors such as:
- Clean label and fair trade based ingredients are increasingly gaining importance as health and sustainability trends are viewed across the world with increasing favor. By working directly with farmers major vanilla bean producers create a favorable environment for transparency in labeling and in the food and beverage industries on the basis of sustainable agriculture and food safety concerns by consumers.
- While vanilla beans are primarily used for their fragrance and flavor, recent years have seen a growth in consumption owing to growing awareness about health benefits. These include the presence of antioxidants, improving cardiac health, reducing the risk of cancers, minimizing inflammation, aiding weight loss, skin care and hair care among others. Consequently, vanilla beans are anticipated to find increased use in the fields of health foods and neutraceuticals, pushing the vanilla bean market on an upward trajectory.
- Increasing demand from consumers for natural products in various industries has pushed major manufacturers to use vanilla extracts from natural origins, instead of synthetic counterparts, with the aim of boosting sales.
- The produce of vanilla beans is largely dependent on the regional climate, which not only affects yield by also the price. Consequently, the threat of climate change is anticipated to have a serious impact on the developments in the global vanilla bean market.
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