Europe: Most ‘Appetizing’ Region for Food Industry

IESE and Deloitte Vademecum on Food and Beverage Markets 2015

14/05/2015 Madrid

Vademecum on Food and Beverage Markets 2015
The U.S., China and Germany remain in the top three on the index of markets with the most export opportunities / Illustration: Vademecum on Food and Beverage Markets 2015 by IESE and Deloitte

The U.S., China and Germany continue to hold the top three spots on the attractive index included in the Vademecum on Food and Beverage Markets 2015, by IESE and Deloitte.

Five of the top 10 countries are European: Germany (third), U.K. (fifth), France (seventh), Netherlands (eighth) and Italy (ninth).

These results mean that Europe is one of the most “appetizing” continents for exports.

Report Findings

The report, led by Professor Jaume Llopis and researcher Júlia Gifra, analyzes 82 countries across data on six key indicators: ease of doing business, legal safeguards, per capita GDP, per capita spending on food and beverages, size of overall population and number of middle-class homes.

The only change in the top 10 this year is in the last two spots: Italy and Canada move up and Russia drops out due to a decrease in GDP, the size of its middle class, consumption and imports.

Top 10 Countries for the Food and Beverage Industry


News by Country

  • Nigeria climbed the most spots: 13 in just one year. This rise is due to the growth of the middle class and to the increase in the volume of food and beverage imports.
  • The second biggest mover was the Czech Republic—up 12 spots to 36th. The Czech Republic saw gains in its legal framework as well as in imports.
  • In Asia, South Korea stands out. Although ranked 20th overall, it is fifth in terms of its legal framework and the ease of doing business. The country’s economy, spending and middle class are all on the rise.
  • Finally, Mexico is once again Latin America’s leading food and drink market, with an improving legal framework and increased import volume. Mexico was ranked 16th overall and third within the Americas.

News by Category

  • In 2014, the United States was the top importer of every category of beverage included in the study. This year, the U.K. replaces the U.S. as number one in wine imports.
  • Germany is the number-one importer of eggs and dairy products, while China leads in fats and oils, and Japan leads in meat. The U.S. dominates in the remaining categories, making it the number-one importer overall.
  • The U.S.’s fish imports have increased by 8 percent, while Japan’s have decreased by 15 percent.
  • The U.S. also has an enormous appetite for bakery and cereal, with a 16 percent increase, while Japan dropped 2 percent in this category.

The Case of Spain

Spain moved up three spots (from 16 to 13) in its attractiveness due to an increase in imports and exports and improvements in its legal framework, per capita GDP and food and beverage spending, which increased 3 percent from 2013 to 2014. Spain finds itself in the top 10 exporters of wine and fruit (third), fats and oils (fifth) and meat and fish (sixth). Exports of Spanish beer have increased 24 percent since 2012.


This attractiveness index is part of the third edition of the Vademecum on Food and Beverage Markets 2015, a thorough study that serves as a guide to companies from the industry that want to open up to new markets.

The Vademecum contains specific data like import and export volumes for various product categories, demographic distribution and population projections up to 2025, average prices on certain products, as well as the main distributors and brands in each market.