Raising the Standards

Food and Beverage Production Industry

As a fundamental human need, food and beverages always have played an essential part in our lives. our ancestors lived or died according to their ability to grow food, hunt for food, or fight for food. People have always searched for new sources of food. Throughout history, people have identified the plants, insects, fungi, and animals in their region capable of sustaining them. In time, agrarian cultures were able to trade or sell their surplus food supplies for other goods and services, and food became an important part of commerce. As societies came into contact with each other, they also learned of different types of foods available in different parts of the world.

The Food and Beverage sector is highly diversified and produces thousands of different products. Processing facilities range from small plants to large industrial units, and most plants produce more than one product. Industries in the Food Manufacturing subsector transform livestock and agricultural products into products for intermediate or final consumption. The industry groups are distinguished by the raw materials (generally of animal or vegetable origin) processed into food products. Industries in the Beverage Manufacturing subsector manufacture beverage products. The industry group, Beverage Manufacturing, includes three types of establishments: (1) those that manufacture nonalcoholic beverages; (2) those that manufacture alcoholic beverages through the fermentation process; and (3) those that produce distilled alcoholic beverages. Ice manufacturing, while not a beverage, is included with nonalcoholic beverage manufacturing because it uses the same production process as water purification.

Today, the Food and Beverage Industry is one of the largest employment industries in the United States, providing jobs for more than 1.4 million workers annually.

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