The export of Italian cheeses is growing


The export of Italian cheeses is soaring. An Ismea report reveals that after the light bending in value of the exports in 2020, the first semester of 2021 has made to record an increment to double digit of the shipments beyond frontier, is in the quantities (+11%) that in value (+13%) compared to the same period last year. The resumption of the consumption out of house in the main Countries customers, emphasizes the Ismea on the base of the last data of the foreign trade of the ISTAT, favored the rebound  after the relaxation of the restrictive measures determined from the pandemic and, as far as the United States are concerned, the removal of duties which from October 2019 to February 2021 affected cheeses sold on the American market.

In 2020 Italy exported 463.000 tons of cheese and dairy products (+1.7% on 2019) for a value of 3.1 million euros (-3%), maintaining the title of third world exporter, behind Germany and the Netherlands and confirming to be the first supplier of two strategic destinations such as France and the United States.

In the domestic market, as can be seen from the figures for the first half of the year, purchases of dairy products have generally fallen compared to the record values of 2020, but still remain above pre-Alpine levels. More closely, the decline in consumption in 2021 highlighted by the Ismea-Nielsen family panel, was 4.2% in volume, after the peak of +10% recorded in 2020, due to the lockdown and the displacement of almost all consumption within the walls of the house. The comparison with the pre-pandemic era, however, shows a clear improvement in purchases of the category in 2021: +6.7% volumes compared to 2019.

Some products have managed better than others to capitalize on the legacy of Covid-19 and retain consumers: this is the case of fresh cheeses (especially mozzarella), which have limited the decline of 2020 to a -3.9%, maintaining a positive differential with 2019 of even 11%. Among the PDO cheeses, to highlight at the level of a single reference, the buffalo mozzarella and Montasio that have further grown in the year after the excellent performance of 2020 (respectively +2.4% and +11%).

Internationalisation and export