The organic sector bets on exports to continue growing

Fiera Milano, Rho


The organic sector bets on exports to continue growing

Within five years, the world market will be worth 620 billion dollars. The spotlight is on the emerging markets, while advanced markets are consolidating the boom of recent years.

Organic Food never ceases to amaze. As shown in a research by the international analyst Facts & Factors, the global organic food and drink market will experience an exponential growth in the coming years: the pre-pandemic value of around $220 billion is set to almost triple in five years, reaching $620 billion in 2026 with a compound growth rate of 16% per year. Emerging markets will be the main drivers of this boom: in more mature markets , the real explosion already took place in recent years. In Italy, for example, according to data from Nomisma, the organic market grew by 142% between 2010 and 2020, reaching a value of €4,358 million.


And what does the Italian consumer demand today in terms of organic products? This is the reply of Rodolfo Foglietti, CEO of Piubio, a chain of specialized stores with roots in the area of Rome. "During the lockdowns the average receipt has remained more or less the same, while attendance has dropped: those with spending power continue to buy in specialised shops, while those who lost income during the emergency are moving towards more price-based choices. In terms of product categories there was a growth especially in flour, eggs and meat, while for what concerns bread there was a shift from fresh to packaged, but of high quality. Frozen food is also on the rise, with the landing of various well-known names. Wine is good, especially wines without sulphites or particular grape varieties. In general, customers are even more attentive to the traceability and origin of raw materials”.



A worldwide phenomenon


The increase in exports is even more marked, according to Nomisma it was 149% for the period 2010-20, reaching €2,619 millions. The coming growth of organic farming is therefore looking abroad. Especially towards emerging areas such as Asia, but also South America since that, as mentioned, in mature markets we are now going through a consolidation phase.


"Hong Kong is a very special market and here the focus on healthy and natural foods was already very high before the pandemic”, explains Diana Velasquez, buyer for City Super. "What we are noticing at the moment is that this focus is also expanding to other product categories, such as fresh produce, but also ready meals, for which demand has grown a lot during lockdowns. This is why we are aiming to increase the sales volume of natural and organic products by adding new references in these product categories".


How does this fit in with another trend that emerged in the year of Covid and particularly in the months of lockdown, namely the growth of recreational foods? “In the Sweets sector there has been a growing focus on healthier products with functional features, such as sugar-free or low-sugar products”, adds Riccardo Bonuccelli, importer for Zona Sul, Brazil. "In the chocolate segment, for example, this translates into chocolates with higher chocolate percentages which, being also more bitter, attract targets that are also more attentive to tendencies regarding taste”.


From sweets to wine, from frozen food to ready meals, organic is an increasingly diversified and internationalised market. The appointment to discover the business opportunities offered by all its nuances is TUTTOFOOD 2021, in conjunction with HostMilano taking place at fieramilano from 22 to 26 October, where the organic world will be the protagonist of the TUTTOHEALTH area.