The Latin America microgreens market size was valued at USD 45 million in 2021 and is projected to reach USD 130 million by 2031, registering a CAGR of 11.4% during the forecast period (2022-2031).
Microgreens are delicate, young vegetable greens ranging from one to three inches. They are harvested 7 to 14 days after germination when both cotyledon leaves fully develop—often termed vegetable confetti. Due to their intense aromatic flavor and variation of colors and textures, microgreens are typically used to enhance the color, texture, or flavor of various foods, such as pasta, pizza, omelets, and salads.
The rising demand for healthy, functional, and nutritional foods and the rising popularity of indoor vertical and greenhouse farming are all expected to drive the microgreens market forward in the next years. Since microgreens need careful tending in a stable climate, they are typically grown in a greenhouse or indoor vertical farm.
Fast food, functional foods, organic fruits and vegetables, and other lifestyle food sources are gaining popularity, as are premium food items and highly nutritious food products.
Consumers are increasingly focusing on adopting agricultural foods with high nutritional value. They are willing to pay a higher price for fresh and organic produce to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, heart-related issues, and cancer. Additionally, many individuals are adopting a vegan lifestyle and seeking the best plant-based sources to meet their nutritional needs. This is anticipated to drive the market growth.
Indoor cultivation is the cultivation of food crops in a controlled environment, allowing for year-round production of high-yielding commodities. Increased food demand and decreased agricultural production have prompted farmers to adopt indoor farming. The decrease in agricultural output is primarily attributable to diminishing productive land, unfavorable climatic conditions, and restrictions on using natural resources. In addition, the rise of technological innovations in indoor farming, such as the proliferation of information technology in vertical farming and greenhouses, encourages farmers to implement farming, which will indirectly support the growth of the global microgreens market over the forecast period.
One of the latest innovations in indoor farming is vertical farming. Most farmers don't know if this method exists or what kinds of crops can be grown. Sensors, AI, autonomous systems, hydroponic, aquaponic, and aeroponic systems are all used in vertical and greenhouse farming. A highly educated and competent team is required to run these complex systems.
The variety of available microgreens is extremely restricted. While many different kinds and species of vegetables exist, microgreens are still in short supply. The market expansion is predicted to be slowed by these issues.
Expensive machines, lighting, automatic systems, and temperature-controlling devices are required for indoor vertical farming. Therefore, the initial cost of indoor farming is significantly higher than that of conventional farming. The cost of urban land, which is higher than that of agriculture, is one of the primary contributors to the high investment level. In addition, energy accounts for a greater proportion of vertical farms' operating expenses and greenhouses' operating expenses. Indoor farming requires a substantial initial investment from farmers for devices, equipment, and other necessities.
Changes in consumer lifestyles have been one of the main contributors to the increasing popularity of microgreens in developing economies. In Latin America and the Middle East, per capita income has increased significantly over the past decade, which is anticipated to drastically increase the demand for luxury food in the coming years, creating lucrative market opportunities.
Awareness of microgreens requires not only advertising but also a vast distribution network. In developing economies, the proliferation of large retail stores, such as supermarkets and hypermarkets, has increased the accessibility of microgreens, as these stores contribute to the rise in sales of functional foods. Supermarkets, hypermarkets, and grocery stores have served as an ideal distribution points for various agricultural food products, including packaged fruits and vegetables.
The Latin America microgreens market is segmented based on type, farming, distribution channel, and end-user.
By type, the microgreens market is categorized into broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, arugula, peas, basil, radish, cress, and others.
Broccoli dominated the market and is expected to register a CAGR of 10.6% over the forecast period.
By farming, the microgreens market is categorized into indoor vertical farming, commercial greenhouses, and others.
Indoor vertical farming is expected to dominate the market, registering the highest CAGR of 11.9% over the forecast period.
By distribution channel, the microgreens market is categorized into retail stores, farmers market, and others.
Retail stores segment dominated the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11.1% during the forecast period.
By end-user, the microgreens market is categorized into residential and commercial.
Commercial segment dominated the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11.5% during the forecast period.
Latin America is a significant revenue contributor and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11.4% during the forecast period.
The recognition that lifestyle-related disorders are the leading cause of health problems has increased consumer health consciousness. The demand for microgreens is fueled by increased consumer awareness of the health benefits of microgreen food products, such as protection against chronic diseases and the promotion of optimal health, longevity, and quality of life. The aging of the population, the rise in life expectancy, and the prevalence of chronic diseases have altered the dietary habits of consumers.
Numerous producers are attracted to microgreen farming due to its benefits, which include rapid growth, high-value crops, and highly nutrient-dense crops, which drive market expansion. In addition, an increase in consumer demand for natural and nutrient-dense food has prompted consumers in both urban and rural areas to engage in community farming and urban rooftop garden farming, contributing to the microgreens market expansion.
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