Belgians include olive oil into their usual shopping basket

Belgians include olive oil into their usual shopping basket

2019/22/05 - Olive oil in Belgium has experienced a very important growth due to the widespread perception that it is the healthy alternative to traditional fats and other cooking oils. Therefore, it has been incorporated into the Belgians usual shopping basket, according to a study by ICEX Spain, Exports and Investments.
And within this category, the report highlights that Premium virgin olive oil is picking up and it is increasingly common to find specialized outlets and gourmet ranges in supermarkets.

The value of imports of virgin olive oil in 2018 stood at 56.19 million euros for a total volume of over 17,000 tons. The average evolution in recent years has been positive in value and negative in exports in volume.

The main suppliers of virgin olive oil for the Belgian market are Spain, Italy and France. Among these three countries, 83% of imports were concentrated in value and 88% in volume in 2018.

Spain occupies the first position since it has almost half of the imports in value and with 65% of the imports in volume of virgin olive oil in Belgium.

This study indicates that olive oil in Belgium is considered less and less a luxury and exotic good to consume sporadically. The abundant government campaigns that recommend maintaining a healthy diet and the good image of the Mediterranean Diet are causing Belgian households to consume it more frequently.

Thus, the image of olive oil in Belgium is very positive. The characteristics that consumers value most are taste, origin and the labeling with which it is presented.

As for gourmet extra virgin olive oils, their demand is divided between the Horeca channel and the retail establishments. In the hospitality industry it can be seen that the vast majority of restaurants use premium extra virgin olive oil (usually Spanish or Italian).

Regarding the sale to the public, nowadays you can find gourmet oils both in specialized stores and in supermarkets.
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