If grams and cups were candy and nuts: Europe consumption sliding

04/28/2014 11:57:00 AM
Tom Karst

Tom Karst Back in the office today after a week in the beautiful U.S. Northwest. Cherry prospects are bright, but always with a fatalistic nod to the whims of Mother Nature.

 Freshfel, the European produce association, has released its latest edition of the Freshfel Consumption Monitor. The document looks at production, trade and consumption trends in the European Union.

 I asked for a full report to review for reporting purposes but was not successful. Fresh says the report is available to non-members for 500 EUR. Freshfel says interested readers can order the report via their website.

The Consumption Monitor indicates a gradual decline in fruit and vegetable consumption in Europe, according to a news release about the report. Unfortunately for Americans, the report speaks of the problematic “grams.” From the release:

The analysis of the latest available data (up to 2012) shows that the consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables in the EU28 stands at 386.96 g/capita/day in 2012. This is a decrease of 8.2% compared with 2011 and a decrease of 8.7% compared with the average of the years 2007-2011.

It means that consumption in the EU28 remains under the level recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO) of 400 g of fresh produce per day. Out of the 28 member states of the European Union, 18 are below the level recommended by the WHO.

Per capita fruit consumption in the EU28 in 2012 stands at 167.62 g/capita/day. This is 11.8% less than in 2011 and 14.2% less than the average of the years 2007-2011. Per capita vegetable consumption in 2012 stands at 219.33 g/capita/day, meaning a decrease of 5.3% compared with 2011 and of 4.0% compared with the average of the previous five years.

Philippe Binard, General Delegate of Freshfel, commented: “The Consumption Monitor shows that fresh fruit and vegetable consumption in the EU has further declined in 2012. The low consumption makes it urgent to do more to stimulate fresh fruit and vegetable consumption. The European Union has just decided to increase the budget for the school fruit scheme from 90 to 150 million EUR, and the budget for EU promotion measures – much of which goes to fruit and vegetables – from 60 million EUR to 200 million EUR in 2020. This should provide more favourable conditions for promotion measures that emphasise the fun, taste and healthy aspects associated with fresh fruit and vegetables.”


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