The export turnover of Italian cooperatives has grown by 130% between 2010 and 2022. It has surpassed the development of national wine exports, which have increased by 101% in the same period.
This is the result of a survey carried out by Ismea, a service institute for the agricultural market. It was commissioned by Alleanza delle Cooperative. The study, which aims to shed light on the degree of internationalization of cooperatives, includes 71 cooperatives out of a total of 379 members of Alleanza. The wineries surveyed represent half of the total production and export turnover of the wine cooperatives, a quarter of the total vineyard area and account for a fifth of the national wine turnover. The surveys include all classes of turnover: 29% of the panel consists of companies with a result between 10 and 50m €, followed by small companies (2 to 10m €, 28%) and large companies with a turnover of more than 50m euros (22%).
Not everyone a winner
The majority of cooperatives that export are in the medium size range, also their total turnover has grown the most in the last 12 years, while those with a turnover of more than 50 m euros have performed better in foreign markets. Only the smallest companies have seen a decrease in sales on foreign markets (-10%).
Germany is the largest customer
According to 79% of the cooperatives surveyed, Germany is the most important exporting country within the EU, followed by France and the Netherlands. Among non-EU countries, the United States is the main export destination for 65% of cooperatives. followed by Canada and Japan.
"The excellent performance of our cooperatives on foreign markets in recent years has taken place in a period that largely coincides with the introduction of sales promotion in third countries. It has certainly contributed to making Italian wine known throughout the world. In our opinion, the measure, confirmed in the National Strategic Plan of the new Common Agricultural Policy 2023 - 2027, still has room for improvement. We hope that more flexibility can be introduced soon, especially in the way expenditure and its variations are reported," commented Luca Rigotti, Alleanza's wine sector coordinator. The survey was carried out in February 2023.
The exorbitant growth of exports for cooperatives compared to the national growth in the period 2010-2022 should not hide the fact that cooperatives come from a low level of exports. VC