Processing Magazine

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January 29, 2013
In February, Processing will launch two new industry-focused electronic newsletters.

Processing’s Food Industry Updatewill hit the streets the first Monday morning every month. An audience of technicians, engineers and managers in the food & beverage industries will find served to their desktop a rich mix of what will be highly readable updates, news features, case studies, technology backgrounders and guest columns. It’s to keep up to date on what’s happening in the production sector of what is undoubtedly the world’s largest industry.

According to Frost & Sullivan, the cumulative value of all revenue derived from the global food and beverage value chain – from farm to fork, as it were – was in 2012 more than $20 trillion, and represents nearly 30% of the world’s economy. Processed food sales are estimated at more than $3 trillion a year. What’s more, it’s innovative solutions coming out of the process industries that will feed a world of seven billion people and growing.   

It’s an industry moved by fierce competition to maintain already strained margins; environmental and worker safety concerns; brand image and integrity management issues; and the emergence of an industry of global scale, which at the same time must serve regional tastes and local markets. We’ll cover something of all of this in our newsletter, as well as the equipment, technology and service solutions that drive productivity gain in process operations.

On the third Monday each month, it’ll be something of the same for chemical industry professionals with Processing’s Chemical Industry Update. Then again, the chem industry is unique. Production of synthetic polymers used as plastics, fibers and elastomers has been growing for more than five decades. The industry recovered strongly from the 2008 recession and will continue growing faster than U.S. GDP based on increasing exports, experts say.

Use of natural gas and natural gas production by-products, including ethane, is causing idled plants to be restarted in North America, and for new ones to be built. An Accenture report last year noted that the U.S. has a top-notch supply base accustomed to delivering world-class quality levels on time and at agreed-upon prices. The report says U.S. ethylene production could increase by as much as 30% by 2017, and concludes, “Based on the current trajectory of low and stable gas prices, the U.S. chemical industry is once again globally competitive.”

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