Italy: Fresh tomato consumption drops

Although Italy is one of the largest European tomato producers, fresh tomato consumption has gone down there over the last decade. In spite of a rising population, tomato consumption fell by 1.6% between 2008 and 2013, resulting in an average per capita consumption of around 15 kg in 2013. 

The loss in value was slightly less, falling by 1.4%, said Syngenta portfolio marketing manager EMEA, Andrea Launeck, during the international conference on ‘Tomatoes, trends towards 2020’, held in April 2016, in Antwerp. According to Syngenta figures, 7,800 hectares are devoted to the production of tomatoes in Italy. By far the largest part are grown in the south, accounting for 5,700 hectares. Over half of the tomatoes grown on Italian soil are different types of truss (US cluster) tomatoes, which make up the largest category at 51.5% (round mini-truss 27%; truss 13% and large oval mini-truss 11%). These are primarily produced in the south and to a lesser extent in central Italy. Another large segment, 16.5%, is reserved for different beef tomato varieties (Cuore di bue 10%, Marmande 3.5% and Beefsteak tomatoes 3%), which are mainly grown in northern and central Italy.

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