Fifteen years ago 9,3 million tons of pasta was produced, in 2014 the production reached 14,5 million (+56%). Furthermore, the number of countries that produce over 1.000 tons a year have risen from 27 to 47 (+74%). Finally, 52 countries use at least 1 kg of pasta per-capita a year (compared to 29 countries 15 years ago, +79%).
We got these data at the World Pasta Day: the event took place October 25th in Milan, at Expo 2015. It was also followed by the 5th World Pasta Congress on October 26th and 27th. Here, various nutritionists compared their views on the nutritional values of the famous Italian dish.
At the World Pasta Day, Ipo (the International Pasta Organisation) and Aidepi (the Association of Italian Confectionery and Pasta Industries) invited over 300 people amongst which producers, scientists, opinion leaders, economists, members of the institution and media representatives from around the world, to celebrate this product and highlight its nutritional values and the sustainability of its production model.
But let’s go back to the data we got. If we put all the spaghetti confections, fusilli and paccheri packets produced around the world in 2014, we would create a 6,5 million kilometers long “snake”. Enough to circumnavigate the globe 160 times. Obviously Italy is at the head of the consumer charts. Out of the 14.5 million tons of pasta produced in 2014, Italians consume 25 kg per-capite per year. Tunisia comes in second, with 16 kg per person, followed by Venezuela (12 kg) and Greece (11,2 kg). Further down the list, we find a group of countries which consume approximately between 8 to 9 kg per-capita: US in seventh place with 8,8 kg; Iran (8,5 kg) and Turkey (7,5 kg) lead the Asian countries, however the country that “jumped” up the chart was Argentina which with 9,1 kg per-capita went from 12th place to 6th in just 4 years. Not to mention Germany, where spaghetti consumption went from 3,5 kg per-capita in 1972, to 5,4 in 1997 to 8,5 kg in 2014.
Italian pasta exports
With almost 3,5 million tons of pasta produced in 2014, Italy leads the global pasta market. So much so, that 1 in 4 pasta dishes (24%) eaten around the world are produced in Italian pasta factories, 7 out of 10 in Europe. Over 15 years Italian pasta exports have risen by approximately 50%, +3,6% in the last year (2014). Today, we export 57% of our national production, almost 2 million tons at value of 2 billion euro. This compared to 54% 5 years ago, 48% in the year 2000 and 5% in 1955. Furthermore, Italy is not far off reaching 60% exports, considering that some Italian pasta producers already export 90% of their total production. Not to mention pasta sales also lead to consumption of other Italian ingredients such as tomatoes, olive oil and cheese. Italian businesses also disseminate the Mediterranean diet around the world by exporting their brand.