The Global Food and Beverage Market in 2017

Around the globe, the food and beverage markets is growing with reasons for and rate of growth varying dependant on the region whether it's The Middle East and Africa, The Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific. These variations come from changes in lifestyle situations, cultural shifts and the economic status of each region however, one thing that does not vary between regions is that the food and beverage market is attracting bigger spends from consumers in each region than ever before. Across the Middle East, we are seeing strong growth due to a number of cultural shifts including women entering the workforce and spending less time in the kitchen. In Africa, spend growth is slower than other regions due to financial stability and the Americas are showing strong spending, established over years of enjoying food and beverage experiences. We've put together a brief snapshot of how the global food and beverage market looks today as determined by Cushman & Wakefield's market report for 2017 as well as discuss what the future growth of food and beverage holds for regions around the world. 

The Proportion of Global Spend by Region

Sourced from Cushman & Wakefield

The Middle East and Africa

  • Total spend on eating out for 2016: USD 182.5 billion
  • Total global consumer spending: 5% 

The market in the Middle East and Africa appears to be growing quickly with the change in consumer lifestyles and work in this region. In Saudi Arabia, the number of shopping malls has grown and the younger generation is out spending leading to a boost in international brands wanting to enter their market. Also, women have joined the workforce leading to higher household incomes and less time to prepare food at home.


  • Total spend on eating out for 2016: USD 881 billion
  • Total global consumer spending: 27%

Europeans are all about the quality of their food. They are nutritionally aware and want to enjoy food that is locally grown, fresh and organic. They also want to enjoy it in a stylish, well designed space with al fresco dining options and short wait times to enjoy their meal. Developers and operators are aware of this and continually looking for ways to create a unique offer.

With the food market already being highly prevalent in this region, the modernisation of these spaces is where we will see food and beverage market grow over the next few years. There has been a combination of newly built food precincts and market refurbishments occurring in this region and this seems to be what the Europeans enjoy.

The Americas

  • Total spend on eating out for 2016: USD 1,174 billion
  • Total global consumer spending: 36%

The Americas are the world’s biggest spenders when it comes to food and the growth in the market that has been seen in these countries has never been replicated in retail. The two key drivers for America’s food and beverage market are that one, more people are eating out as seen in the total annual spend on food last year and two, more people are spending money on experiential retail as opposed to merchandise. This region is in love with fast casual with their preference for quick service or full service being almost equal, unlike other regions who have a preference for full service over other types of outlets.

Asia Pacific

  • Total spend on eating out for 2016: USD 1,052 billion
  • Total global consumer spending: 32%

The Asia Pacific region is enjoying a mix of carefully curated food offers that give them access to celebrity-chef concepts, Michelin awarded outlets and international food brands. Food halls have been long existent in many Asian countries however, countries including Australia and Japan are adopting the food hall in many of their retail centres and enjoying it with more and more space being allocated to food and beverage in centres than ever before.

The Years Ahead

The amount we are all spending on eating is expected to continue to grow steadily over the next 10 years.  The Asia Pacific region is expected to lead the way with an average growth of 7.5% per year, followed closely by the Middle East and Africa at 7.3%. What we need to ensure now is that the food and beverage movement is not just a passing trend but a structural change in consumer spending habits that is here to stay. With growth being strong, it means that developers of retail centres or multi-use developments must aim to create food and beverage precincts that nurture the needs of the modern consumer whether it be providing an exciting food mix, making a place out of a space, operating under best practice standards, operating consistently and delivering on the promise that an exceptional experience will be had. With the opportunity to capture a portion of the consumer's spend, malls and retail precincts around the globe must masterplan their food and beverage strategically if they are to remain relevant and grow their sales as well as their asset value. 

Credits - All data has been cited from Cushman & Wakefield's annual Global Food and Beverage Market Report - download the full report