You'll find pasta in pantries all around the world. And although Italian consumption of this staple is definitely off the charts, exports have also continued to break records over the last few months.
With the lockdown, 2020 has been the year of pasta as an almost daily dish on tables around the world. A survey commissioned for World Pasta Day by AIDEPI (Unione Italiana Food) and Agenzia ICE from DOXA, analysed the trend of pasta consumption during the lockdown in Italy, Germany, France, the UK and the USA which, taken together, account for more than one third of world pasta consumption and are the main markets for Italian pasta products.
Pasta is enjoyed by almost all French (99%), German (98%) and British (95%) consumers, while 9 out of 10 Americans also eat it regularly In all the surveyed countries, the majority of the population eats pasta from 1 to 4 times a week on average, with percentages ranging from 56% of Americans to 85% of French consumers, 61% of Germans and 71% of British. Indeed, 6% of Americans and 7% of French consumers eat it every day.
Italian consumption is off the charts, but exports are also record breaking
However, in these countries average annual per capita consumption is much lower than in Italy: 9 kg in the USA, 8 in France and Germany and 3.5 in and UK, compared to the Italian 23.5 kg. Italy is really off the charts in this sense: everyone eats pasta in Italy and around 6 out of 10 Italians of all ages, and with a peak in the centre south of the country, eat it every day.
The lockdown has partly changed how people perceive and consume pasta, varying from traditional dishes to the urge to experiment. 26% of the sample (with peaks in Italy and France) prepared traditional family dishes during the lockdown, in search of comfort during the uncertainty of the times; 21% prepared more elaborate meals, having more free time at their disposal; and consumers also tried out “new recipes and cooking methods” (20%); and purchased “new formats and types of pasta, including wholemeal pasta, pasta made with legumes and gluten free products” (15%), especially the French and Italians. One interesting point is that 10% of Americans ordered pasta from food delivery services. Germany (51%) and the USA (43%) are the countries with the most conservative consumers, who did not change their eating habits.
This success is also confirmed by the export figures: according to a study of ISTAT data by ISMEA, the first seven months of the year saw double digit growth in pasta exports, up 30% over January-July 2019. Even during the most critical months of the emergency, despite the restrictive measures enacted by many foreign markets, pasta exports suffered little from the downturns experienced by other segments during April and, above all, May.
Pasta has always been a focus of TUTTOFOOD, which is pleased to have the Unione Italiana Foodas a partner. In the 2021 edition, at fieramilano from 17 to 20 May, pasta will be in the spotlight at the TUTTOPASTA area.