Africa presents tremendous opportunity for the food industry, according to Serigne Diop, head of Nestle's Ivory Coast research and development facility. "Agriculture is the largest economic sector in Africa but there is a lack of food industry development," he said. "We believe that in the next 10 years there will be 500 million Africans who can afford packaged food." Researcher Keith Tomlins of the Natural Resources Institute at the University of Greenwich in the U.K. said Senegalese hibiscus already has high consumer recognition outside of Africa and presents a promising opportunity for new products in the European market.

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