Please visit our new website at!
Local Time: Print

Food & Beverage Processing Equipment
A Top Export Prospect for Colombia

Market Estimates






Total Market Size




Total Local Market Size




Total Exports




Total Imports




Imports from the U.S.




(The above statistics are unofficial estimates in millions of USD)

Source: Vademécum de Mercados. La Nota Económica. World Trade Atlas.

2012 market data is estimated with an increment of 12% from 2011

Total Market Size is the estimated value of the Colombian Food Processing and Beverage Industry

The Colombian Processed Food and Beverage Equipment market caters to an industry that produces approximately U.S. $ 22 billion in revenue per year. The food industry is comprised of 10 sub sectors: Sugar mills, rice mill, cereal mills, oils and fats, dairy products, chocolates and candy, meat products, animal food products, bread and pasta and others. The beverage industry is also comprised of three subsectors: Beer, Carbonated Soft Drinks & Juices and spirits.

The food and beverage processing and packaging (FPP) industry employs about 19.3 percent of the domestic labor force, concentrated in the five main metropolitan areas: Bogota, Medellin, Cali, Cartagena and Barranquilla. FPP equipment from the U.S. is widely accepted in the Colombian market due to its high quality, outstanding customer service, a favorable exchange rate and lower shipping costs. Strongest U.S. competitors included: Italy, Brazil and Germany with market shares of 19.6, 14.2 and 11.3 percent respectively. U.S. product participation grew at nearly twice the percentage rate of the total market’s growth for 2011, with an actual increase of 12 percent, while the overall market has grown almost six percent.

In 2012 the Food Industry grew 12% compared to 5.3% in 2011, while the beverage industry is still recovering from a decrease in sales in 2010. Within these industries, the Dairy, Animal Food and Carbonated Soft Drinks & Juices sectors were the three markets touted as the most attractive in terms of supply machinery and equipment. To put into perspective the importance of the Food and Beverage import market, this industry accounts for 5.4% of all the Colombian imports. In other words, if Colombia imported approximately U.S. $ 40 billion in 2011, U.S. $ 2.16 billion is the amount of imported goods that came into the country to supply the food and beverage companies.

Among the most important sectors in the food processing equipment industry in Colombia are: the Sugar Mills, Rice Mill, Cereal Mill industry, the Oil & Fats sector, Dairy products, Chocolate and Candy industries, and the Meat and Beverage sectors. Most of the equipment and raw materials required in those industries are imported. The implementation of the FTA between Colombia and the U.S. will increase the opportunities for U.S.exporters on this industry.

Best Products/Services Return to top

Based on the market data and growing demands, and taking into consideration the following recap of market entry of machinery, processing equipment and raw material to supply local food and beverage production, the following sectors as the most attractive in terms of overall supply/investment:


Market Data; large mkt. size

Market Demand; Growing at %

Number Buyers; # of companies

Benefitted by FTA with UNITED STATES


High ; U.S. $ 2.6B

Low ; < 5%

High ( > 75 buyers)

Machinery + Raw

CSD & Juices

High ; U.S. $ 2.2B

High ; > 10%

Low ( < 25 buyers)


Animal Food

High; U.S. $ 2.6B

Low ; < 5%

Med ( > 25 buyers)

Machinery + Raw

Oils & Fats

Med ; U.S. $ 1.6B

Med; > 5%

Med ( > 25 buyers)


Sugar Mills

High ; U.S. $ 2.2B

Low ; < 5%

Low ( < 25 buyers)


Chocolate &

Med ; U.S. $ 1.6B

Low ; < 5%

Med ( > 25 buyers)

Machinery + Raw

Source; BPG index.

Colombia is the third largest dairy products producer in Latin America, after Brazil and Mexico. The dairy sub-sector, along with the following services and equipment, offer the best market potential for U.S. exporters: dairy production equipment; bottling services (alcoholic and non-alcoholic); brewery equipment; mixing, grading and filtering apparatus; heat exchangers; filling, sealing and capping; Preserved/canned meat and fish products; and Horticulture packaging equipment.

Oils and fats processing is another promising industry segment, given that Colombia produces nearly 37.7 percent of total regional production and is listed among the top four producers of crude palm oil yield in the world. The sugars and syrup segment, followed by canned meat, poultry and fish products, as well as fresh vegetable and fruit packaging, are also favorable industry niches. Another key prospect is snack processing and packaging equipment. Beverages have been the fastest growing segment so much so that the National Industry Association (ANDI) has recently created a Beverage Chamber, to provide assistance to companies devoted to this sector.

Opportunities Return to top

The recent influx of direct foreign investment and a decrease in unemployment, show that Colombia is on its way to perform at all-time highs in terms of economic activity.

Competition from local equipment producers in this sector is minimal. The quality of local technology has improved for basic equipment and spare parts manufacturing. Local production is still undeveloped, when compared to the U.S. and other countries, especially in terms of competing with the latest technologies such as nanotechnology and electronic/robotics used for production/packaging lines.

The implementation of the U.S.– Colombia Free Trade Agreement - FTA on May 2012, emphasized the importance of improving the competitiveness of this sector. This will broaden sales and export opportunities for U.S. manufacturers. The FTA eliminated the five to 15 percent Colombian tariffs on U.S. products for this industry and will significantly increase the competitiveness of U.S. food machinery and packaging equipment into the Colombian market.

Resources Return to top

CS Bogota contact:

Julio Acero

Commercial Specialist

U.S. Commercial Service

U.S. Embassy Bogotá, Colombia

Tel: 011-571-275-2635 / fax: 011-571-275-4575


  • Alimentos Magazine, Axioma Comunications LTDA. September, October 2011 editions.
  • Asociación Nacional de Industriales (National Industries Association).
  • BPG Index. Is a metric created by Andres Gutierrez to objectively evaluate the best prospects, by financial and machinery innovation factors.

Banco de la Republica (Central Bank).

  • DANE (National Administrative Department of Statistics).
  • Superintendencia de Industria y Comercio. (Governmental body which regulates commerce).
  • La Nota Económica.(Business Magazine) Vademécum de Mercados. August 2011

Presidencia de la República and/or Palacio de Nariño (Office of the President of Colombia):

Statistics Bureau:

World Trade Atlas / National Statistics Department (DANE):

Return to top

  Notice to Visitors!

  The link you have chosen will take you to a non-U.S. Government website.

  If the page does not appear in 5 seconds, please click this: outside web site is managed by the International Trade Administration and external links are covered by its website  disclaimer statement.

  Notice to Visitors!

  The link you have chosen will take you to a non-U.S. Government website.

  If the page does not appear in 5 seconds, please click this: outside web site is managed by the International Trade Administration and external links are covered by its website disclaimer statement.