The Italian food e-commerce market is forecasted to hit US$1,319.8 million by 2024. The significant growth in the food and beverage sector has broadened Italians' culinary interests beyond traditional cuisine.

In this article, we dive into the popularity of various food and beverage products, evolving trends, and consumer preferences. Additionally, learn why a tailored fulfilment strategy can be vital for online businesses looking to boost sales.

Growth of Italy's Food and Beverage Industry

In 2023, Italy showed a marked increase in online food and beverage shopping, with a 7% rise compared to 2022, pushing the market value beyond €1.3 billion.

As online sales continue to expand, the food sector stands out as a particularly dynamic segment within Italy’s e-commerce market. As early as 2019, around one-third of Italian shoppers were buying food and beverages online, with nine million consumers turning to e-commerce for their grocery needs. By 2023, this upward trend continued, driven by three primary factors:

  • Italian consumers value the convenience of home delivery.
  • Time efficiency is crucial in online shopping; the ability to order and pay with a few clicks enhances the shopping experience.
  • Click-and-collect options have gained momentum, showing consistent monthly growth since April 2023 compared to the previous year.


What Do Italian Consumers Seek in Online Food and Beverage Shopping?

Modern Italian consumers desire innovation, uniqueness, and engaging stories behind their food. There is a growing emphasis on sustainability, shorter supply chains, and the consumption of natural and organic foods. This shift in preferences indicates a trend towards products that are not only high in quality but also environmentally conscious and socially responsible.

To meet these expectations, whether purchasing local or international food products, one key factor influencing consumer decisions is the PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) and PGI (Protected Geographical Indication) certifications. 28% of consumers say they highly consider PDO/PGI designations when making purchases, a figure that rises to 32% at the point of consumption.

These certifications, along with others like Fair Trade Certification or The Rainforest Alliance Certified provide supply chain transparency, a growing concern for consumers interested in the origins and production practices of their purchases.

Fast delivery is essential for food, ensuring both customer satisfaction and product quality. Italian shoppers expect their orders to be delivered within 3 to 5 days

Sustainable e-commerce supply chain e-book


Essential Fulfilment Services for Your Food Products

When choosing fulfilment services for your Italian food and beverage products, it's crucial to focus on maintaining product quality, authenticity, and customer satisfaction.

Temperature-Controlled Storage: Proper storage is vital to prevent bacterial growth and spoilage. Many food products have delicate flavours and textures that degrade if not stored at the correct temperatures. Temperature-controlled warehousing ensures these products remain fresh and flavourful until they reach the customer.

Specialised Packaging: Food products in Italy and elsewhere often require specialised packaging to preserve their quality and authenticity during transit. The transport process includes various handling stages that can risk damage or contamination. Specialised packaging provides an extra layer of protection, reducing the chances of breakage, spillage, or contamination during shipping.

Techniques like vacuum sealing or airtight packaging are crucial to maintaining the freshness of these products by minimising exposure to external elements.

Customs Compliance: Different countries have unique regulations and standards regarding food safety, labelling, and importation. Ensuring customs compliance means your food and drink products for the Italian market meet these standards and avoid delays.

Meeting customs regulations is a legal necessity when importing goods into foreign markets. Non-compliance can lead to legal consequences, including fines, penalties, or even the confiscation of goods.

Timely Shipping: The right parcel delivery company in Italy must have expertise in handling delicate food items, ensuring that products arrive in perfect condition. Punctuality is crucial, especially for fresh food items. Choosing a delivery service known for reliability and efficiency ensures your products reach Italian customers promptly, boosting customer satisfaction and loyalty.

By prioritising these factors, you can ensure that your Italian grocery products are handled and delivered with the utmost care, preserving their quality and authenticity throughout the fulfilment process. 

Popular Food and Beverage Categories in Italy's E-Commerce

Below is a list of some of the leading categories within this sector.

Food Supplements

This segment is highly significant in the overall nutrition e-commerce market in Italy. The emphasis on health and wellness among Italian consumers drives a growing demand for food supplements. In 2020, Italy led European countries in per capita spending on dietary supplements, averaging €63.6 per person. Approximately 80% of Italians incorporate dietary and nutritional supplements daily.


Italians understand the importance of a balanced lifestyle and use supplements to enhance their nutritional intake and overall well-being. The food supplements e-commerce market is poised for substantial growth, expected to reach US$190.8 million by 2024.

Besides vitamins, high-protein dairy products are gaining popularity for health and fitness purposes. A majority of  58% of dairy product consumers prioritise protein content in their purchases.

Baby Food

Italian parents prioritise natural ingredients and instil healthy eating habits in their children from a young age, influencing the baby food market's product range. Popular items include infant formula, infant rice cereals, and baby food flour.


The baby food sector in Italy was valued at €636.6 million in 2022, with projections suggesting growth to €1.43 billion by 2024. Italian parents value the convenience and reliability of online baby food stores. Specialised marketplaces in this category are also popular, with products from platforms like pharmacies and drugstores. The main reason for buying from online pharmacies is their reputation for reliability and quality.

Cereals, Pastries, Muesli

Breakfast holds significant cultural and culinary importance for Italians, often referred to as "la prima colazione" or "la colazione." It is considered the most important meal of the day, setting the tone for one’s energy. Consumer preferences are shifting towards healthier options, with a growing trend for nutritious breakfast products like muesli, granola, and cornflakes. 44% of breakfast consumers prefer their morning meal sweet, with biscuits, croissants/muffins, rusks, and cereals being the most popular choices.


The breakfast cereals market is expected to reach US$1.11bn in 2024. Italians appreciate the variety these products offer, such as cereals or granola bars made from grains like wheat, corn or oats.

While it might seem that fresh products are favoured, the reality is that most breakfast items consumed are packaged, with only 1 in 10 consumers choosing homemade products, either predominantly or entirely.


This market involves selling packaged beverages ready for immediate consumption. Customers purchase their products online and have them delivered directly to their doorstep, requiring only one more step to prepare them for consumption. This section focuses on coffee and tea, both essential beverages for starting the day or relaxing in the afternoon. In a survey on "Groceries & Beverages Purchased Online by Category," coffee and tea emerged as the top two preferences among Italian consumers.


In the tea market, the user base is projected to reach 6.3 million by 2029. While hot infusions are popular, iced tea is the most consumed non-alcoholic beverage in Italy, with each person consuming over nine litres per year, one of the highest rates in Europe.

Although Italy does not grow coffee, it remains the second most popular beverage in the country. The Italian coffee e-commerce market is projected to reach $68.9 million by 2024, comprising 54.9% of the hot beverage e-commerce market in Italy. Preferred coffee purchases include whole beans, ground coffee, coffee capsules, and instant coffee.

Fulfilment Solutions for Your Products in Italy with byrd

byrd's fulfilment solution can be your ideal 3PL partner for food and beverage fulfilment in the e-commerce sector. Our specialised services include temperature-controlled warehousing to ensure your products maintain their freshness and quality throughout the fulfilment process. Our warehouses are certified for organic products, ensuring compliance through regular and stringent controls. All necessary precautions are taken to prevent contamination or mixing with other products.

We adhere to HACCP requirements at every stage of the supply chain, guaranteeing the integrity of your products. Our expertise includes handling hazardous goods in the food and beverage industry, accurately identifying and segregating them to ensure compliance and prevent risks during shipping.

With our logistics services, your food and beverage products are in capable hands. Our focus on quality assurance ensures that your products reach your customers in perfect condition, satisfying even the most discerning consumers who prioritise authenticity and taste.