The food-retailing sector is faced with many challenges and opportunities. On the one hand it is affected by the world economy, cost variations, growing competition and the focus on sustainable issues. On the other hand, technological innovations offer new ways to conduct business, communicate with customers and share information with stakeholders throughout the value chain.

The globalisation of the food industry has led to structural changes and complex market conditions, including the concentration and expansion of retail chains. The result has been increased competition and pressure on costs, a development which amongst other things leads to integration between the various stages of the food supply chain. For consumers this means an unparalleled range of products, resulting in simplification and convenience, but also in some confusion. More consumers and a changing market order By 2025 the world’s population is expected to increase from 6.8 to 8 billion, and more will grow to be older. This, combined with migration to urban areas and rising prosperity, will infl uence how people choose to spend their money and how the retail food sector will evolve and change. The food-retailing sector in high income countries is
stagnating, while in developing regions such as Brazil, India, China, Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe and parts of Africa it is up-and-coming. Here, there is a growing middle class who are moving into the cities and who have more money to spend, resulting in an increased demand for food both locally and globally. This also aff ects the structure of the food stuffs.

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