Swiss long life bakery sales fall

During 2014, the Swiss long life bakery product industry sold fewer biscuits than the previous year. Domestic sales experienced a slight fall, while export business saw a significant decline. The volumes sold abroad and the turnover achieved were both down for the fourth time in a row. The climate is set to become harsher still in 2015, given the strength of the Swiss franc and the insufficient compensation of the commodity price.

The supplementary credit announced by the Federal Council this month is not enough to offset the disadvantageous commodity price handicap – caused by Switzerland’s agricultural policy – which manufacturers who export biscuits are having to contend with.

The 24 industrial manufacturers of long-life bakery products in Switzerland sold 45,444 tonnes of goods during 2014, some 2.3 per cent less than the previous year. The associated turnover fell by 1.1 per cent to CHF 456.3 million.
Long life bakery products include savoury snacks and nibbles, bread-like baked goods such as rusks and crispbread, special products (semi-finished dessert products, etc.), specialities (e.g. chocolate-coated biscuits), standard biscuits and long-life ‘freshly baked products’ (e.g. cakes, cereal bars). Standard biscuits (39.1 per cent) and specialities (29.8 per cent) accounted for almost 70 per cent of sales volumes.

The largest growth rates, in terms of volume, were achieved by special products (+ 6.4 per cent) and bread-like baked goods (+ 6.0 per cent).

In terms of the domestic market and at 31,711 tonnes, the companies within the Swiss industry for long life bakery products sold slightly fewer products than the previous year (- 0.7 per cent). Turnover fell by 0.8 per cent to CHF 337.2 million. In terms of volume, bread-like baked goods (+ 6.1 per cent) and savoury snacks and nibbles
(+ 0.6 per cent) recorded growth. By contrast, sales volumes fell for standard biscuits (- 2.6 per cent), long-life ‘freshly baked products’ (- 1.6 per cent), special products (- 1.4 per cent) and specialities (- 0.8 per cent). Imports of long life bakery products increased by 1.2 per cent during 2014.

Over the past decade, the annual volume of imported long life bakery products has increased by more than 33 per cent in total. During the same period, the Swiss market share of domestic manufacturers has decreased from 65.4 per cent to 58.9 per cent.

Domestic sales of Swiss and imported long-life bakery products remained almost unchanged during 2014 at 53,814 tonnes.
Based on overall domestic consumption, an average consumption per capita of 6.58kg can be derived, which is equivalent to a decrease of 75g compared to the previous year.

With 13,733 tonnes of products sold, exports fell by 5.9 per cent. The associated turnover fell by 2.1 per cent to CHF 119.1 million. The proportion of overall production accounted for by exported products decreased from 31.4 per cent to 30.2 per cent.

The list of 80 export destinations for Swiss long life bakery products is still topped by Germany, which accounts for 35.1 per cent of exports, followed by France (19.4 per cent). Due to a steep decline in exports to Austria, Saudi Arabia climbed to third place (2013: fifth). Sweden is now in fourth place.

The main countries where significant increases in delivery volumes were achieved were the United Kingdom (sixth), Saudi Arabia (third), Sweden (fouth), Turkey (21st), the USA (10th) and Taiwan (24th).

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