Rimini, 7th January 2016 - Thanks to the hot summer season, 2015 was another very positive year for ice cream sales, particularly those of artisan gelato.
Preliminary figures show an 8% increase in sales compared to 2014, a year that was compromised by a cold rainy summer. The figures are even higher for Central-Southern Italy, where sales rose by over 20%.
This leads to an estimated turnover of more than 2.5 billion euros, with an average of 4 Italians out of 10 eating gelato regularly during the summer season, whereas there is also a growth trend in sales throughout the year.
In fact, gelato consumption in Italy has risen to over 6 kilograms per capita, the equivalent of approximately 380,000 tons (of which approximately 170,000 are artisan gelato) and export is also expanding, with excellent prospects not only in a European context, but also in America and Asia.
As well as gelato parlours (approximately 40,000, of which 12,000 only make and sell gelato, whereas the others also have coffee bar and pastry activity), the sector also includes firms manufacturing machinery and furnishings/fittings for gelato parlours (approximately 15 companies with a workforce of 450 and a turnover of over 300 million euros, 80% abroad, but if one also takes into consideration furnishings, fittings and equipment, the turnover reaches 800 million euros and a thousand employees) and the ingredient and semi-finished product sector, which has approximately 80 companies, a workforce of 1,600 and a turnover of over 450 million euros, has grown in recent years both in Italy and above all abroad. Points of sale have also increased: artisan gelato parlours have a workforce of approximately 90,000. In Italy, the incidence of artisan gelato parlours on the population is 62 companies for every 100,000 inhabitants.
Moreover, artisan gelato is gaining a leading role on the main streets of the world´s capitals. With interesting growth prospects abroad, not only for master artisans, but for the entire production chain behind the scenes. In fact, export has still to a great extent to be explored, with excellent prospects not only in a European context, but also in the US and the Far East. The major export markets are in the European Union, but there is a growing demand in the USA and part of the new emerging markets, above all in the Far East.
Sources: our processing of ilgelatoartigianale.info - AIG . Coldiretti data
The demand for Italian artisan confectionery increased in 2015
Artisan Confectionery on the rise: This can be seen from the Databank survey, commissioned by AIBI (Italian Bakery Ingredients Association), which gives an insight on the bakery and pastry sectors´ trends.
In particular, Italians´ consumption reached 562,000 tons (+0.5%) in 2014 and a further rise is forecast for 2015 (+0.7%).
What is Italians´ favourite confectionery? Pastries and biscuits, which, together, account for over 40% of sales, are dropping. On the other hand there is an increase in brioches (+3.5%), products for celebrations (+6%) and made-to-order cakes for special events. ´American style´ cakes, with several layers and sugar icing, are also very popular.
The sector´s current positive period is emphasized by figures regarding the use of preparations for making cakes and confectionery. In particular, last year, pastry chefs used over 27,000 tons of cacao-based products (+0.4%). Jam, fillings and fruit jellies also did well, totalling approximately 15,000 tons, of which 20% was used in bakery. For the end of 2015, Databank forecasts two-digit increases. In short, as well as cakes, their basic ingredients are also selling well.
Traditional Italian cakes, particularly those eaten at Christmas, are increasingly popular abroad. Also in 2015, according to initial preliminary figures, there was an increase in exports estimated at 10.2% compared to 2014, for a value of 309 million euros.
The countries to which Italy exports most include France, with purchases for approximately 75 million euros of Christmas cakes (24.3% of total exports), followed by Germany, to which Italy exports 53.8 million euros of pastry and confectionery for the festive season (17.4% of total exports), while in the United Kingdom, Italian Christmas cake exports total 34.3 million euros (11.1% of total exports).
In terms of percentages, the largest export growth regarded the United States, where 45.5% more cakes were ordered than in 2014.
In the ranking of the Italian regions with the largest increase in food export, the first place is held by Campania, with +14.8% in the first half of 2015. Then come Veneto (+11.9%), Piedmont (+5.1%), Emilia-Romagna (+ 4.7%) and Lombardy (+1%). At provincial level, record export growth is reported by Naples (+36.1%), Bergamo (+26.1%), Florence (+19.6%), Siena (+18.9%) and Vicenza (+18.7%).
The artisan pastry sector in Italy features 43,575 specialized enterprises, which employ 159,753 staff.
Bread: artisan bread is increasingly in demand
Bread reflects Italian society. This is the general datum emerging from the survey ´The market of artisan pizza, industrial and artisan bread and pastry´, promoted by AIBI (Italian Bakery Ingredients Association) a member of ASSITOL, and processed by Databank.
The survey, which involved the bakery world, turned the spotlight on bakers on one hand and consumption on the other. Fresh artisan bread is still the most popular with Italians (86.5%). However, in the last six years, economic difficulties resulted in an average per capita consumption of between 85 and 90 grams, i.e. a drop of approximately twenty grams compared to 2009. Compared to 2014, the reduction is 3.8%.
The survey highlights how there is an increasing rise in the popularity of healthy varieties and those with high nutritional value (with a long rise time, fat-free, low salt content, wholemeal, zero-mile), alongside a ´rediscovery´ of typical and regional specialities. To keep prices down, small loaves or rolls are preferred. There is also greater interest in organic bread, which rose by over 2%. Moreover, the increase in nutritional disturbances has led to a new market sector - gluten-free products and those based on cereals offering an alternative to wheat (e.g. kamut, spelt) - which currently has a turnover of approximately 250 million euros (+18%).
Alongside fresh artisan bread, there is an increase in substitutes for bread (breadsticks, crackers, soft breads), which last year rose by +0.9%: the Databank survey forecasts a rise of 1.2% in 2015. In particular, in 2014, the soft bread sector conquered 44% of the market of conventional bread substitutes, in particular piadina and rolls. A positive trend was also reported for crackers and rusks.
Generally speaking, a well equipped workshop with an adjacent point of sale is the type of artisan activity preferred by trade members. Of the 21,000 bakeries of which a census was taken in 2014, almost a quarter has a staff of between 4 and 10 and a production capacity of approximately 240 tons per year, whereas the majority are small businesses. Medium/large businesses are to be found mainly in Lombardy, Emilia Romagna, Veneto, Tuscany and Apulia. On the other hand, Trentino Alto Adige has the largest number of large businesses (over 50 employees).
Coffee consumption: habits are changing and consumption is more selective
Italy, with approximately 340,000 tons (equally divided between Arabica and Robusta varieties), is the sixth European country as far as coffee consumption is concerned. Over 75% of the product imported to Italy comes from five international producers: Brazil, which itself accounts for 35% of the total, Vietnam, India, Indonesia and Uganda.
In Italy, there are 716 coffee roasters, which export part of their production: In fact, Italy is second in Europe in terms of export, preceded only by Germany.
The sector has a workforce of approximately 7,000, with an estimated overall turnover of 3.5 billion euros, a third of which comes from abroad.
Following a drop in domestic consumption in 2013 and 2014, a moderate revival in the demand for the various formats is expected in 2015.
In the home sector, there was a drop in ground espresso, whole bean coffee, soluble coffee and decaffeinated coffee, while ground coffee for moka coffee pots (the most important sector of the home channel) substantially maintained its consumption volume. On the other hand, the demand for coffee in capsules continues to rise constantly.
As far as consumption away from home is concerned (Horeca and Vending), in 2013 there was a 2.6% drop in demand. There is however a constant increase in the consumption of coffee at work (the OCF - Office Coffee Service sector), thanks to both a reduction in costs and the sector´s companies aggressive sales policies.
SIGEP 2016 AT A GLANCE
Dates: 23 - 27 January 2016; Organizers: Rimini Fiera spa; Patronages and collaborations: Ministry of Economic Development, Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies, Emilia Romagna Region, Rimini Municipality, ICE Italian Foreign Trade Institute; edition: 37th; frequency: annual; classification: international; admittance: trade members only; hours: 9:30 am . 6:00 pm, last day 9:30 am . 3:00 pm (3:00 . 5:00 pm only with online tickets); business unit manager: Patrizia Cecchi; project managers: Gabriella de Girolamo (gelato), Giorgia Maioli (pastry, bakery, coffee); exhibitor info: +39 0541 744111; Web site: www.sigep.it - #Sigep2016
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manager: Elisabetta Vitali; press office coordinator: Marco Forcellini; press staff: Alessandro Caprio, Nicoletta Evangelisti Mancini