Phycocyanin, produced by Aphanizomenon flos-aquae and spirulina, is used in the food and beverage industry as the natural coloring agent “Lina Blue” and is found in sweets and ice cream.

Phycocyanin, produced by Aphanizomenon flos-aquae and spirulina, is used in the food and beverage industry as the natural coloring agent “Lina Blue” and is found in sweets and ice cream.

The global natural food colors market was valued at US$1.2 Billion in 2015, and is expected to grow by 6.8% to reach US$1.3 Billion in 2016. North America and Western Europe are the two largest markets for natural food coloring according to a new market study, collectively accounting for a revenue share of 60.1% in 2015. Increasing use of natural food color by the food processing industry is a key factor driving the growth of the market, with spirulina extract anticipated to witness the highest growth rate in 2016.

The global natural food colors market is expected to witness an upsurge owing to the introduction of new food products with natural ingredients and coloring pigments. Factors such as technological advancements, growing demand for clean label products and stringent regulations on synthetic coloring agents are influencing manufacturers to incorporate more natural colorants into their offerings.

Additionally, rising awareness about the potential health impact of artificial colors on human health and increasing consumer health consciousness are likely to foster the demand for natural food colors. Technological advancement to procure sustainable solutions that find proper application in packaged beverage, foods, bakery and other end-use industries is expected to drive growth of the market in 2016 and beyond.

Confectionery products is a lucrative segment on the basis of application, and is expected to witness a healthy growth rate in 2016 owing to the arrival of new product formulations that aid in creating cleaner and shelf-stable confectionery products.

On the basis of pigment type, the market is segmented into curcumin, carotenoid, anthocyanin, spirulina extract, paprika extract, carmine, chlorophyll and betalains. Carotenoid is further sub-segmented into annatto, beta carotene, lycopene and lutein. Amongst the mentioned pigment types, spirulina extract is anticipated to lead, with overall revenues growing by 11.0%.

In addition to North America and Western Europe, the natural food colors market in Asia Pacific (excluding Japan) is anticipated to increase by 7.7% to reach US$321.2 Million in 2016.