'Nduja, the spreadable cured meat with a soft consistency and spicy flavor typical of Calabrian cuisine, is gaining more and more popularity worldwide. Not only culinary experts but also consumers are discovering the quality and authenticity of this Italian product with a centuries-old tradition.

According to TasteAtlas, one of the most consulted online gastronomy portals at an international level, Calabrian 'nduja has been classified as the best cured meat in the world. Within the "TasteAtlas Bucket List: 40 Things to Try in 2023 " the origin of the best foods to try was reported and, in the section dedicated to cured meats, the 'nduja of Calabria was positioned in the first place, surpassing other famous products around the world, such as Croatian slovanski kulen, Spanish chisco de tineo, Polish kabonosy straropolskie, and Hungarian csabai kolbász.

This recognition may further increase the popularity of 'nduja globally, attracting more attention from overseas markets. Furthermore, it represents an opportunity for food distributors and Italian producers to promote and bring this Made in Italy product of excellence beyond to the international markets. 

The growing popularity of 'nduja abroad is the result of a trend toward the search for authentic, versatile, and high-quality products capable of satisfying the needs of consumers. In this article, we will analyze the business opportunities for Italian producers and foreign importers and distributors, starting from export data and web research trends that testify to the success of 'nduja in the world.

The export of 'nduja: data and trends

According to the Southern Report conducted by Sole 24ore, in the first months of 2022, the export of the Calabrian agri-food sector recorded an increase of 36% compared to 2020 and a strong impetus was given by the 'nduja. The consortium that has been bringing together the producers of ' nduja of Spilinga (in Calabria) for 17 years confirms the growing demand for their products, both on the Italian market and abroad. The turnover of the consortium, in fact, is around 20 million euros, with a growth of 25% per year since 2012. Of the annual production of 20,000 quintals of 'nduja, almost a quarter is destined for foreign countries, leading the product to be very popular in countries such as Canada, the United States, Japan, and England, where it is particularly appreciated by haute cuisine.

By comparing these data with those collected by Google, it is possible to further verify the growing interest of users and how online searches for this product continue to record excellent results.

Figure 1. Google searches for "Nduja" in the world, from 2013 to today (source: Google Trends)

Let's take the UK as an example, where the trend of interest, from 2013 to today, is very similar to what we have seen globally. 

Figure 2. England: Google searches for "Nduja"

We find a similar situation in the United States which, as we said previously, represents one of the most representative markets, together with Canada.

Figure 2. United States: Google searches for "Nduja"

By restricting the reference period and analyzing searches over the last 12 months, we note that both globally and in the countries taken as examples (UK and USA), searches are constant over the months, without significant seasonal peaks that can condition the sales and consumption.

The 'nduja: a traditional product with a unique flavor

'Nduja is a traditional salami from Calabria, which stands out for its spicy flavor and its soft and spreadable consistency. It is a product made with high-quality pork, hot peppers, salt, and spices, and its origins date back several hundred years. Due to its craftsmanship and centuries-old origins, this cured meat is considered one of the symbols of Calabrian cuisine and Italian gastronomic culture.

The production of 'nduja still follows traditional techniques and craftsmanship, with the use of selected high-quality ingredients. The meat is finely minced and mixed with the chili pepper, in order to give the product its characteristic spicy flavor. The paste obtained is then bagged and left to mature for a few weeks, during which it acquires further nuances of flavor and aroma.

The versatility of 'nduja in the kitchen

'Nduja is an ideal ingredient to enrich dishes with a touch of flavor and spiciness and is perfect for flavoring sauces and meat sauces. Just add a small amount of 'nduja to tomato sauce to obtain a condiment with an intense and spicy flavor. This cured meat is also widely used in the kitchen to flavor pasta dishes, pairing perfectly with tomato-based sauces, but also with those based on cream or cheese.

Furthermore, for the preparation of pizzas, 'nduja can be used both as the main ingredient and as an additional condiment, by spreading a small amount on the pizza base, in order to obtain an intense and spicy flavor. Its soft consistency also makes it suitable for the preparation of delicious appetizers, such as bruschetta. Just sprinkle the 'nduja on a piece of toasted bread to obtain an appetizer with a unique and unmistakable flavor.

'Nduja: business opportunities for distributors, retail and food service industry

Thanks to its unique and inimitable flavor, 'nduja is highly appreciated both in Italy and internationally, as it represents the priceless cultural and gastronomic heritage not only of Calabria, but of all of Italy. In particular, foreign consumers are discovering the variety and authenticity of this niche product, because it is able to perfectly express the Italian culinary tradition and excellence.

The growing notoriety and increased demand in the world offer important business opportunities to both Italian producers and food distributors in the world. Moreover, it is possible to implement various B2B marketing strategies to promote 'nduja in local or national markets, attracting the interest of consumers, as well as retailers, restaurateurs, and other operators in the food sector

In order to promote 'nduja to new markets, it is important to identify which channels can be used. In addition to participating in trade fairs, where it is possible to meet potential customers and business partners and exchange information about the products, it is necessary to guarantee a good online presence of 'nduja distributors and, consequently, of its producers. With the use of digital channels, such as marketplaces and specialized online distribution platforms (such as the ItalianFoodNews.com Marketplace), it is much easier to reach B2B customers and new markets from all over the world.

Another effective marketing strategy is to establish partnerships with top-level chefs and restaurants, which can help promote and increase the visibility of 'nduja, as well as the visibility of distributors and resellers, reaching as many people as possible. 

Stay Up To Date

Enter your email to follow updates

Please enable the javascript to submit this form

We use cookies on our website, for the essential operations of the site, and to improve the user experience.