NEW YORK, March 30 /PRNewswire/ — America’s increasing consumption of mass quantities of pizza and pasta is expected to take the retail market for Italian Foods from nearly $12 billion in 2006 to more than $13.8 billion in 2011, according to Italian Foods in the U.S., a new report from market research firm Packaged Facts.

Recent market growth has been driven by the pizza and pizza products category which brings in more than 45% of total Italian food sales at retail. Sales in this category topped $5.3 billion in 2006, a jump of 2% over 2005 figures. Pasta sauce and pasta each make up slightly more than 21% of the market. The smallest category, Italian cheeses, experienced significant gains over the last two years due in part to increased demand for natural and gourmet varieties.

Capitalizing on the current health and wellness trend, Italian food marketers have been consciously positioning the health and nutritional benefits of their products. Organics have been embraced by all of the major marketers, which have expanded their organic offerings while keeping an eye on the trends towards “authentic” Italian cuisine and ultra-convenience that are taking root around the country.

Yet in spite of the exciting and dynamic health, convenience, and authenticity trends driving the Italian food market, there has been very little change in household penetration over the years.

“Our research shows that more households aren’t consuming Italian foods. Market growth is coming from Italian food lovers eating increased quantities of diverse Italian fare,” notes Tatjana Meerman, the Managing Editor of Packaged Facts. “Specialty Italian foods such as meats, breads, and condiments are making the move into the U.S. market and augmenting the current up-scaling of today’s gourmet Italian foods.”

Italian Foods in the U.S examines new product trends, offers competitive profiles of industry leaders and niche players, and looks at consumer trends and behaviors surrounding the consumption of Italian foods. The report can be purchased directly from Packaged Facts by visiting: It is also available at

About Packaged Facts

Packaged Facts, a division of, publishes market intelligence on a wide range of consumer industries, including consumer goods and retailing, food and beverage, and demographics. For more information visit, or contact Tom Ehart at 240-747-3014, or

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