© Eurofresh Distribution
At the Sana Restart event held in Bologna in October, data was presented regarding the health of Italy’s organic fresh produce sector. In 2020, online sales of organic produce are up 143% compared to 2019, exceeding the growth registered for online sales of food in general (+125%). The data, compiled by Osservatorio Sana 2020, with the patronage of FederBio and AssoBio and the support of ICE, highlighted a strong increase in demand for organic products overall: +7% in domestic consumption compared to 2019. The domestic organic market reached a value of €4.3 billion (including food service). Exports also did well, exceeding €2.4 billion in 2019.
Consumer trust in organic products is strengthened by the presence of an EU certification system that regulates production, labelling and checking methods. Italy leads the way in Europe when it comes to organic producers (over 70,000) and organic processing companies (over 10,000). Specialist organic chains and independent stores have recorded an 8% increase in sales this year, while sales in “other channels” (neighbourhood shops, pharmacies, markets, ethical purchasing groups, aggregated producer websites) were also very positive in 2020 (+10%).
Italy’s organic exports in 2020 are set to surpass €2.6bn (source: Nomisma), maintaining a growth rate of 8% compared 2019 and representing 6% of total Italian food exports.