Germany’s BDSI confectionery body expresses concerns over ‘significant declines’ in exports
Germany’s federal confectionery association, the BDSI has reported ‘significant declines’ its key export markets, with continued pressure on sales amid the impact of the global coronavirus pandemic.
Underlining this, a total of around 531,105 tonnes of confectionery and snacks were sold in the first quarter of 2021 for overseas markets, representing a volume decrease of 4.4% over the same period last year. In value terms, sales were also down year-on-year for the quarter by 3.6% to around €2 billion for first four months of the year.
This follows an extended period of challenging results for 2020, which had seen a decrease in confectionery export volumes of 1.3% compared to 2019, with overall export sales down 2.5% to around €8.5 billion.
As the BDSI noted, with exports making up over half of overall sales, this means more than every second tonne of German confectionery is destined for its markets across Europe, the US and other global territories.
“This export strength is an essential one, and the reason that Germany’s unique medium-sized structure of the confectionery industry has been retained, ”said Dr. Carsten Bernoth, Chief Executive of the BDSI. “Export is an important factor, especially for smaller companies, this is an area of concentrated trade, against tough pricing seen in Germany,”
The organisation added that from its latest studies in June, just 30% of confectionery companies expected improvement in the situation with exports, with just as many anticipating that conditions would worsen further.
Some of the key factors have included growing challenges in production, human resources and procurement of ingredients. Three out of four companies (76%) stated that many of these issues were impacted by the corona pandemic, which had brought about very high cost increases in staffing costs. This was particularly the case through increased occupational safety measures.
Among the highest additional burdens were the costs for coronavirus testing of employees, and increased absenteeism due to illnesses, quarantine and child care. In addition, the logistics and energy costs of businesses had increased notably.