Italian olive oil performs well in first quarter

Exports of Italian extra-virgin olive oil and similar sub-products recorded a strong performance in the first quarter of 2014
Italian olive oil performs well in first quarter

Italian exports of extra-virgin olive oil and related products rose 6.6% in the first quarter of the year, as a number of destinations both in Europe and overseas increased their demand.

Customs data shows that demand for Italian olive oil was strong on the international market at the start of 2014. Two important markets such as the Us and the Uk both stepped up their imports between January and March.

The Us, by far the largest importer of Italian olive oil, increased its demand by 7.6% in Q1 to just below 23,000 tonnes.

British overall imports of olive oil increased 7.0% in the first quarter of 2014, to a total of 10,622 tonnes. For the three months to March, Italy was the second-largest origin for the UK market after Spain. Imports of Italian olive oil in Q1 were 3,747 tonnes, recording an 8.6% increase on the same period of 2013.

Spain remains the leading origin for the British market, with 5,636 tonnes sold in Q1. Shipments increased 9.4% on last year. In terms of market share, the two European olive oil producers alone account for 53% (Spain) and 35% (Italy) of total British imports. Other origins, although very minor, include Germany, Greece and Morocco.

Germany, on its part, lowered its demand for Italian olive oil by 2.9% in January-March this year, to just below 10,000 tonnes. At the same time, the country remains the second-largest destination for the product, and accounts for 12.5% of all exports.

Other European markets such as France, Austria and Belgium all imported more olive oil from Italy. Other export markets that gained additional strength were Canada and Japan, whose demand increased 60.3% and 33.6%, respectively, in the first quarter.

The product category includes Italian extra-virgin olive oil, virgin olive oil and similar sub-products that are not chemically modified.

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