21 Feb 2022

Berries: a € 554 million market in Italy


GfK's surveys on Italian household consumption in 2021 show a fresh fruit market where there is stability in terms of penetration and a drop in average purchase, due to a lower average purchase per receipt (on the other hand, frequency is increasing). 


In contrast, there is a positive trend for soft fruits (including strawberries), which show good growth in terms of both the number of buyers and the average purchase. The number of buying households increased by 3.1% and the average purchase amount rose by 11.5%.

Here too, however, the quantities purchased per act were down (from 660g to 630g, a decrease of 4.3%), while the frequency increased by 9.5% compared to last year. In fact, the number of purchasing occasions increased from 7.8 to 8.6 during the period. Overall, turnover for berries including strawberries increased by 15% over the period, from €482m to €554m.

The market segments with above-average market penetration are the North-East (+12%) and North-West (+10%) regions, the high (+16%) and medium-high (+5%) socio-economic classes, and households with three members (+7%).

On the other hand, with regard to the quantities purchased per buyer, the values recorded by households residing in the North-West (+24%), in the high socio-economic class (+24%), households with 2 members (+15%), households residing in metropolitan areas or in the suburbs (+18%) or with the person responsible for purchasing over 65 years old (+16%) are significantly higher than average.


Analysing the berries category in particular, excluding strawberries, there has been a decisive growth with an increase of +20.4% in the number of purchasers (from 6.3 million to 7.6 million households) and +19.5% in the average purchase (which has reached 1.91 kg). Expenditure on fruit is also increasing, rising from just over €19 per year to over €21.

Total expenditure in this category amounted to EUR 146.4 million in 2021.

In general, all subcategories in the segment show good growth in volume: Blueberries and Currants driven mainly by penetration, while Raspberries grow due to increases in both growth drivers. Only blackberries show a decrease in volume due to a decline in the buyer base.


An analysis of the profile of the total Berries category shows a strong concentration in the North (both North West and North East), with above-average indices in large families (2/3 members), with RA (purchasing manager) aged between 35 and 64, in a high socio-economic class and living in large population centres. The profile is very similar to that of last year.

Households living in the North-West (+60%) and North-East (+21%), of high (+38%) or medium-high (+11%) socio-economic class, living in metropolitan or peripheral areas (+23%), with 3 members (+11%) have higher than average penetration rates.

The segments with above-average purchase volume per buyer are residents in the North-West (+13%), of medium-high (+14%) or high income (+5%), with households of 3 members (+17%) and residents in metropolitan areas (+18%). 

The sub-segments show a profile in line with the total Berries in terms of penetration with the exception of Ribes, which show a higher concentration in single or two-component households and with more mature Purchasing Managers.

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