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Food, Drink & FMCG: Sector Overview

Food, Drink & FMCG

Sector Overview

What jobs are available and how to get them


  • Big trends affecting the industry globally are mass urbanisation, ageing populations, growth of the middle classes, consumer-driven markets and sustainability
  • Since the 2008 downturn consumers are extremely price conscious and looking for value. FMCG players have had to respond to that by launching more value-priced products
  • Innovation has been key to success, but now it's needed just to maintain position. Workplace initiatives and collaborative partnerships are growing as part of a need to innovate harder and smarter

What is FMCG?

It means Fast Moving Consumer Goods and covers everything from food and drink products to household goods such as toothpaste, washing powder and over-the-counter medicine. They also tend to be high volume, low cost items.

Facts & Figures

  • Food & Drink represents the largest manufacturing sector in the UK (14%)
  • 400,000 people are employed in the sector by 7,000 companies
  • Around 10,000 new products are introduced every year

More from the UKTI

Sector Overview

  • According to the Institute of Grocery Distribution, revenue from the UK grocery sector will grow to £184bn per year by 2016 (up 17% from 2012)
  • Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrison have all been expanding recently
  • The Food and Drink Federation forecast that it will need 45,000 new management and professional workers by 2017
  • According to Mintel research, chocolate has been largely recession-proof in the UK. Other growth areas have been cosmetics and nail care


Job Roles and Opportunities

  • Job roles are varied, including sales and product awareness promotion, research and development, value and product growth, procurement and logistics, advertising and brand awareness, pricing and product development
  • While global companies dominate the sector (Coca-Cola, Cadbury, Procter & Gambler, L’Oreal, Mars), there are a growing number of smaller, niche companies operating

Sector Research

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