CIAA publishes European food and drink Industry trends

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 20th April 2010

The Confederation of Food and Drink Industries of the EU (CIAA) today released its annual data and trends publication.

This year’s Data & trends for the European Food and Drink Industry revealed that the EU is the world’s largest single exporter and importer of food and drink products worldwide, with a trade surplus of E1.1 billion in 2008. The food industry boasts the EU’s largest manufacturing sector in terms of turnover, and includes over 310 000 separate companies.

Small business accounted for almost half of the industry’s turnover and 68% of its employment.

The report identified the US as the most important export destination for the EU, despite a 10% drop in export value in 2008. Exports to Australia were up 7.7% in 2008, to E1380 million, the EU’s eighth biggest destination, although imports from Australia were down 13.2% to E1071 million, dropping back to 14th place.

Product-wise, palm oil imports to the EU have shot up from 15th place in 2000 to second place, and coconut oil from 16th to eighth, knocking down a variety of seafood products. Prepared and preserved meat was up from 17th to ninth, although fresh means lost ground.

On the export side, wines have claimed the top export spot, with soft drink gaining significant ground since 2000.