Food Industry

Among the major players in the global agribusiness, the State of São Paulo also stands out in the industry, trade and services in the food industry. Approximately 28,67% of the industrial production of food in Brazil is concentrated in São Paulo, with special mention to the manufacture of sugar (66,97% of the total), canned fruit and vegetables (44,96%), dairy products (19,20%) and ground coffee (34,17%), according to a survey held in 2016 by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE).

The food sector represents approximately 9,6% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the companies’ revenues totaled US$ 180 billion in Brazil in 2018, out of which R$ 145 billion was in food and US$ 35 billion in beverages, according to the Brazilian Association of Food Industries (Abia). The sector is the first largest in gross output value of the manufacturing industry.

Out of total sales, US$ 36,45 billion was exported, equivalent to R$ 1273 billion, or 19,41% of total industry sales (Abia – 2016).

On the other hand, imports of food are much less significant and concentrated on wheat, totaling US$ 4,99 billion. This makes the food sector one of the most relevant to the generation of trade surplus, reaching, in 2016, US$ 31,5 billion, below the trade surplus of the Brazilian economy as a whole, which is US$ 47,7 billion (Abia).

In 2017, investments in the sector totaled US$ 2,79 billion (Abia - 2017). It is worth noting that sales and investment growth has remained constant, even in view of the economic downturn.

Actual industry sales, in 2018, increased by 0,67%. This growth is also reflected in the increase of jobs (Abia).

In 2018, the industry employed 1.616 million workers. Since 2011, the number of employees in the sector grew 5,83%. The annual growth rate was 0,71%, significantly above the average of the manufacturing industry, which is -1,17% per year (Abia).

São Paulo State ― 2012-2016
Gross value of industrial production (thousand US$), by economic activities of CNAE version 2.0
Sectors 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Manufacture of food products 62,930,852 58,876,959 57,381,141 42,521,698 47,883,134
Processing and preserving of meat 10,116,557 9,650,234 10,676,875 8,263,502 8,480,558
Processing and preserving of fish, crustaceans and molluscs 161,286 223,045 246,62 196,031 215,284
Processing and preserving of fruit and vegetables 4,686,292 4,295,957 4,363,621 3,572,819 3,180,186
Manufacture of vegetable and animal oils and fats 2,853,038 2,577,682 3,191,700 2,020,224 1,984,017
Manufacture of dairy products 4,523,515 5,325,716 5,393,482 3,659,330 3,668,925
Manufacture of grain mill products, starches and starch products 6,203,024 6,018,450 5,766,836 5,030,275 5,116,126
Manufacture of sugar 18,271,567 15,698,200 13,275,536 9,420,897 13,598,215
Coffee roasting and grinding 1,471,330 1,351,147 1,184,548 956,134 1,119,202
Manufacture of other food products 14,644,243 13,736,527 13,281,923 9,402,486 10,520,622
Manufacture of beverages 7,028,749 7,206,816 7,001,383 5,738,994 5,421,984
Manufacture of alcoholic beverages 3,970,700 4,208,821 4,384,812 3,774,331 3,623,625
Manufacture of non-alcoholic beverages 3,058,049 2,997,995 2,616,571 1,964,663 1,798,360
Source: IBGE.          

Why invest in the Food Industry in São Paulo?

  • The state is top-ranked in the industrial production of food in Brazil.
  • It concentrates the largest final consumer market.
  • It has a great infrastructure network and distribution channels.
  • It has specialized labor at all stages of production.
  • Rich and diverse agriculture next to industrial production sites.

Click here to download a brochure with more information about the sector.

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