Europe’s confectionery industry is shaped by family businesses and Germany, the Russian Federation and Ukraine enjoy close ties in normal times with the countries sharing contacts and raw materials with each other as well as cross-border productions.
"It is still incomprehensible to us that our two most important partners in Eastern Europe are at war with each other," said Bastian Fassin, Chairman of the BDSI. "First and foremost, our concern is for the people, business partners and their families in Ukraine."
Fassin is also Chairman of the International Confectionery Fair Working Group (AISM) and he said European politicians must use this tragic wake-up call to strengthen the internal market again.
"Because the dramatic consequences of the war and the sanctions imposed by the political and economic side on the production of important agricultural raw materials, on international logistics, but also on the energy market cannot yet be foreseen in their entirety."
According to data supplied by WorldFood Moscow in 2021, Russia’s largest food & drink exhibition, Ukraine was historically Russia’s main confectionery sweet supplier, but producers in EU-member states and Switzerland now control 60% of imported products.
Germany supplies 30% of chocolate exports to Russia, followed by Poland and Italy. Together, these countries cover roughly $250m in exported chocolate products, including raw, filled and finished products (like chocolate bars).
Chocolate is Russia’s most popular imported product, accounting for half of the total market value. Baked goods represent around 30%, while sugar candies make up the remaining 20%.