SAN JOSE, CALIF. —The world market for pasta is projected to climb to 17.9 million tons by 2015, driven by a growing number of nuclear families and the need for more convenient meals, according to Global Industry Analysts, Inc., a market research firm. “Factors such as high nutritional content, easy-to-prepare, longer life, and versatility are resulting in increased consumption of pasta across the globe, even in the Middle Eastern and African regions,” G.I.A. said. The research firm said the United States and Europe “dominate” the world pasta market, accounting for 60% of consumption. Americans had per capita pasta consumption of 8.9 kg in 2008, which compared with 1.8 kg for Japan and 28.6 kg for Italy, G.I.A. said.