The Covid-19 emergency has created a new scenario in the Italian coffee market, with sales that keep increasing

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Despite the closure of most retail outlets during lockdown, and the consequent drop in income, in the last few months the coffee market has seen surprising growth. In the first quarter of 2020 spending on coffee purchases increased by 10.7%, breathing new life into a stagnant market – growth in 2019 was less than 1%. According to IRI*, in April the Italian market (discount included) registered an annual increase of 13.8% in value terms and 11.7% in volume. Progress continued in May, with a jump of 17.3% in turnover and 12.3% in sales volume. The closure of bars and restaurants produced a further boost for capsules and pods alike. Capsule products have been a revolutionary feature, the most dynamic in recent years.

After an exceptional 2019 (+14.9% in volume and +11.25% in value) in March capsules made another leap forward, doubling the increase (24% in volume and value alike), and in April and May managed to pass 30% growth, with a peak of 38.6% in terms of value. A fair wind blows for pods too, which recorded an increase of almost 22% in May. Blends for mocha are fighting the good fight. Although they have been shrinking for some time (-4.4% in volume and -5.1% in value in 2019), they continue to account for half of overall coffee turnover in large retail chains (over 644 million Euros), with 55% of the total volume sold in the first quarter of 2020.

The balance has returned to the black (+2% in volume and +3.4% in value) and in April and May mocha blends registered a 4.3% increase in sales and a 5% cash value increase over last year’s figures. An increase was also registered in domestic consumption of espresso blends, above all in online purchases, which in 2020 have surpassed 11.4 million Euros – 84% more than in the first quarter of last year.


In value: total market turnover.
In volume: total units sold on the market.
*IRI: world leader in market research.