In the food sector of Europe, small farmers and food suppliers are fading because of larger groups who are big exporters of food, according to the study published by Crédito y Caución.
The French food industry has lost its market share of close to 19%, despite its worldwide prestige, because it consists of more than 10,000 companies, but typically have less than 20 people. Italy is also going through a similar process, where small businesses are struggling because of the fall in demand and foreign competition. Whereas, in Denmark a process of concentration has already been developed, and can be seen like economies of scale that have increased their bargaining power. But, the food industry of Germany is dependent on the growth opportunities in emerging markets like China.
Spain is one of the most important agricultural sectors of Europe and is the second European producer country of fruit and vegetable after Italy. The production, processing, supply and distribution of the food industry in the Spanish market is around 8% of GDP and employs nearly 1.8 million jobs, which translates into 10% of total employment in Spain, and about 15% of the exports. To meet the challenges of changes in global demand and changing habits of the people, the Spain food industry is transforming itself.
In 2011, this sector employed approximately 30,000 companies employing 446,300 people directly. 96% of the companies in the sector are SMEs, who are having less than 50 employees, of which 80% have less than 10 employees.
The profit of food industry in Europe is affected mainly due to the increase in commodity prices and energy bills, especially for companies with low export activity. The sector has been able to provide a balance with an increase in exports of 12% in 2011, to Spain’s low economy, which is caused by a decreased domestic household expenditure for almost a year. In 2012, the sector grew by 1.8% in sales, representing nearly 84,000 million Euro.