Italian food market growing at modest pace

by Staff
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NEW YORK — The retail market for Italian foods is expected to grow from approximately $12 billion in 2006 to more than $13.8 billion in 2011, according to "Italian Foods in the U.S." — a report by the market research organization Packaged Facts.

"Our research shows that more households aren’t consuming Italian foods," Tatjana Meerman, managing editor of Packaged Facts. "Market growth is coming from Italian food lovers eating increased quantities of diverse Italian fare. Specialty Italian foods such as meats, breads, and condiments are making the move into the U.S. market and augmenting the current up-scaling of today’s gourmet Italian foods."

The pizza and pizza products category brought in $5.3 billion in 2006 and represents more than 45% of total Italian food retail sales, according to the report. Pasta sauce and pasta each make up a little more than 21% of the market, and the smallest category is Italian cheeses. However, Italian cheeses grew significantly during the last two years as a result of an increased demand for natural and gourmet varieties.

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