Mercado de pistacho

Pistachio market

The pistachio is the second most consumed nut in the world. The main reason for this is the range of benefits it brings to the human body. In addition, its multiple applications in the food, pharmaceutical and cosmetic sectors are excellent opportunities for pistachio demand to experience accelerated growth.

In this post we present key aspects of the global pistachio market. In addition to presenting estimates between 2024 and 2029, we describe the trends driving demand for pistachios and detail important factors in the distribution, marketing and end use of this fruit.

The size of the global pistachio market

All the analyses published by renowned market research and consultancy companies, such as Data Bridge Market Research, Mordor Intelligence and KBV Research, point to the growth of the pistachio market in various sectors, mainly in the food and cosmetics industry.

According to the Mordor Intelligence report:

Global pistachio market value 20244.70 billion dollars
Estimated value of the pistachio market 20295,85 billion dollars.
Compound annual growth rate (2024-2029)4,47%

Geographically, the pistachio market is mainly segmented into: North America, Europe, Asia and Africa.

Pistachios are a nut originating from Central Asia. But in terms of production, it is the United States that leads the world pistachio nut market, exporting mainly to China (52% of production) and to the countries of the European Union (31% of production).

Europe is the second largest market for pistachios. Its production and the high consumption of this group mean that the market in this region is growing steadily and rapidly. For example,

  • Germany is the largest importer of pistachios in Europe (raw and unprocessed pistachios). It is also a re-exporter for other European countries, such as the United Kingdom.
  • Italy. After Germany, it is the world’s second largest importer of shelled pistachios, most of which are consumed in Italy. It is also the third largest European producer of pistachios.
  • Greece has the largest production in Europe (8,000 tonnes per year).
  • Spain is the third largest importer of pistachios in Europe. This import is used for domestic consumption and industry (20,000 metric tons consumed in 2022 and 2023). Spain also produces pistachios, although not enough to meet its own demand.

Pistachio market dynamics 

Among the main factors favouring the growth in global demand for pistachios are the following:

  • The continuous increase in health-conscious consumers, which is why the population is increasing its demand for healthy foods. Pistachios are seen as an alternative to other types of snacks, such as potato crisps.
  • Consumers are increasingly aware of the nutritional profile of pistachios. Its consumption is growing as a food rich in antioxidants, proteins, fibre, vitamins and minerals, which can help to:
    • Lower cholesterol.
    • Protect the heart.
    • Balance blood glucose.
    • Reduce inflammation.
    • Strengthen the immune system.
    • Improve erectile function, etc.
  • Consumers are also looking for unique flavours. Pistachios are perceived as premium and exotic foods that can be incorporated into luxury brands.
  • Pistachios have enormous culinary versatility. In addition to its unique texture and taste, it has a unique colour that makes it a valuable ingredient in food production, not only to enrich food, but also to enhance its flavour and increase its appeal to the consumer.

Commercial forms of pistachio

Formas comerciales del pistacho
Commercial forms of pistachio

The pistachio market is also segmented depending on the form or presentation in which it is marketed:

  • In shell. They can be raw, toasted, salted, etc. They are one of the most consumed snacks in bars and are used as ingredients in salads.
    • Roasted and salted. They are generally marketed in premium presentations, to be consumed as a healthy snack.
  • Shelled. They can also be marketed shelled: raw, roasted, unsalted, salted, diced or whole.
    • Raw shelled is usually bought to make butter or pistachio flour.
    • Diced shelled. Used for uniform filling of foods or to make various products, such as biscuits or muffins, more aesthetic.
  • Raw pistachio sticks. In this case the pistachios are cut into slices and then into small strips. This presentation is used in both sweet and savoury dishes.
  • Pistachio flakes. This is a product derived from the shelled pistachio nut. It is obtained by delicately cutting the kernel into small discs.
  • Broken pistachio. It is widely used to enrich foods or to give them a crunchy effect, for example in cakes and ice cream.
  • Pistachio flour. It is widely used to make cakes, pies, cupcakes, muffins or breads.
  • Paste (butter). In this case the pistachios are ground to a smooth cream. Generally it does not contain sugar. It is used in sauces, ice cream, pastry fillings, meats, etc.

Final application of pistachio

Agróptimum: Aplicación final del pistacho
Agróptimum: Final application of pistachio

On the other hand, pistachio has a wide application in various food sectors, and the market can be segmented into the following uses:

  • Ice cream parlour. Pistachio paste is used to give ice cream a smooth consistency. It is also used as a flavouring agent. In addition, crushed pieces are added to achieve a crunchy effect on the palate.
  • Bakery and confectionery. Pistachio can be added to various types of dough, such as Danish dough. It is also used to recreate a delicious visual contrast in cakes or toppings.
  • Beverages. For example, pistachio milkshakes are commercially available. There is also pistachio syrup and syrup, to add a sweet touch to coffees and to give more complexity to alcoholic and non-alcoholic cocktails.
  • Other. Chopped or flaked pistachios can be marketed as:
    • Dressing for various types of cereals, yoghurts and fruit salads.
    • Spreadable products such as butter and other spreads.
    • Natural snacks (shelled pistachios), to be eaten straight from the packaging.
    • Ingredients of energy bars.
    • Snacks covered with dark chocolate (shelled pistachios), etc.
  • Non-culinary products. Pistachios are used as ingredients in make-up and other skin care products.

Pistachio distribution and sales channels

Canales de distribución y venta del pistacho
Pistachio distribution and sales channels

Producers and farmers can market pistachios through multiple channels:

  • Direct sales. In this case, a direct relationship is established between producers and customers, be they end consumers or retail companies.
  • Wholesalers. This type of channel makes it easier for producers to expand their client portfolio, being able to reach a larger number of retail companies. Generally, wholesalers have great logistical capacity and large commercial networks.
  • Retailers. They are represented by large supermarket chains, health food shops, online shops or independent food companies. They are the ones who sell pistachios directly to the final consumer. They also play a vital role in the advertising of pistachios, to promote their consumption.
  • Export market. As explained, pistachio is one of the nuts with a huge growth in global demand. Therefore, accessing the pistachio export market allows producers and investors to obtain a higher profit margin.
  • Creation of value-added products. Producers and investors dedicated to pistachio cultivation can diversify the forms of commercialisation of this fruit, through the production of derivative products, such as pistachio butter or pistachio oil. These in turn can be marketed through retailers and wholesalers.

The pistachio business: a more than profitable investment

Thanks to the Mediterranean climate and the availability of land, Spain is the European benchmark for pistachio trees. At Agróptimum we offer you our expert guidance, innovative vision and technological capacity to guarantee the maximum profitability of your cultivation project.

We lead the transition of agricultural practices, to operate with maximum efficiency and sustainability. We have a multidisciplinary team of experts to comprehensively manage your project and we develop innovative and environmentally friendly farming systems.

Contact us and transform the future of your plantation. At Agróptimum we become your strategic partner for the pistachio business.