Paula FeldmenThe confectionery industry is mature, established and counter-cyclical. Consumers see candy as an affordable luxury in economically difficult times. PMMI’s 2013 Confectionery Industry Assessment, released in September at PACK EXPO Las Vegas, notes that, in this counter-cyclical fashion, the confectionery industry has mostly seen success over the past five years and growth for companies of all sizes, especially within emerging economies. Chocolate confectionery sales in the United States came in around $12.5 billion in 2012, 3.8% higher than 2011. Non-chocolate candy sales were $6.9 billion, a 6.4% increase. Gum sales saw a 5.7% decline from 2011 figures, to $3.4 billion.

Because of this growth, confectioners say they’re seeking out equipment that will bring them greater productivity and efficiencies.

Larger confectioners said they’re looking for automation solutions that are accurate and sensitive enough to feed raw product and materials into high-speed packaging machines.

Whether they’re looking at a tempering machine, flow wrapper or depositor, confectioners demand superior execution from their machines. Accuracy is critical to ensure precise weight and cooling at the ideal tempering curve.

Expanded capability

Respondents of the study indicated they want machines that can act as one unified system, communicating with one another for better tracking, evaluating and predicting performance.

Beyond productivity needs, the confectionery industry is also dealing with social and regulatory drivers such as health and safety issues including the Food Safety Modernization Act, obesity, ethical product sourcing and growth on a global scale.

Following this year’s successful event in Las Vegas, PMMI’s PACK EXPO International 2014 (November 2-5; Chicago), will again make finding sweet solutions easy, with features like The Confectionery Pavilion and The Processing Zone serving as hubs for industry suppliers.

PMMI’s 2013 Confectionery Industry Assessment is downloadable from for $3,500 (free to PMMI members) There is no charge for the Executive Summary. For more information about PACK EXPO International 2014, visit


PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, is a trade association representing over 600 packaging and processing supply chain companies that provide a full range of packaging and processing machinery, materials, components and containers. PMMI actively brings buyers and sellers together through programs and events such as The PACK EXPO family of trade shows,, PMT Magazine, PACK EXPO Show Daily, networking events and educational programs.

PMMI organizes the PACK EXPO trade shows: PACK EXPO International, PACK EXPO Las Vegas, PACK EXPO East, EXPO PACK México and EXPO PACK Guadalajara, connecting participants in the packaging and processing supply chain with their customers around the world. Coming Up: EXPO PACK México 2014 , June 17-20, 2014 (Mexico City, Mexico); PACK EXPO International 2014, Nov. 2-5, 2014 (McCormick Place, Chicago); Pharma EXPO, co-located with PACK EXPO International 2014, presented jointly with the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE); PACK EXPO East, debuting Feb. 2–4, 2015 (Pennsylvania Convention Center, Philadelphia); EXPO PACK Guadalajara 2015, March 18-20, 2015 (Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico).

Learn more about PMMI and the PACK EXPO trade shows at and