The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has published the annual National Statistics the 'Northern Ireland Food and Drinks Processing Report 2021'.
The report contains comprehensive data on the values of sales, value added, number of employees and destination of sales for each of the ten constituent subsectors of the food and drinks processing sector for 2020 and 2021. These key statistics are supplemented with fifteen performance indicators for each subsector. Provisional estimates of sales and employment are also provided for 2022.
This edition of the report, for the first time, contains experimental statistics on the value and origin of purchases of goods and services made by each of the ten constituent subsectors for processing.
In addition, a time-series of data covering the period 1989 - 2021 has been published on the DAERA website for each of the main variables. These will enable users to identify trends over time in variables of interest to them.
The report's key findings are:
- The total gross turnover of the Northern Ireland food and drinks processing sector is estimated to have increased by 9.5% in 2021 to Pound 5,950 million. Provisional estimates for 2022 project an 8.0% increase to Pound 6,427 million.
- Between 2020 and 2021 the sector's sales increased to all broad markets. Northern Ireland (+Pound 180.3m) and Great Britain (+Pound 162.0m) experienced the largest increases. Great Britain remains the sector's largest market accounting for 47.4% of sales in 2021; a decrease from 48.9% in 2020.
- The food and drinks sector contributed 38.5% to total manufacturing sales in 2021; a decrease from 39.1% in 2020.
- In 2021, the estimated number of direct full-time employee equivalents (FTEs) in the sector increased by 0.6% to 25,116 FTEs. Provisional estimates for 2022 project a 1.5% increase to 25,497 FTEs.
- The sector's contribution to total manufacturing employment was 30.1% in 2021; a decrease from 30.3% in 2020.
- The value added by the sector increased by 4.2% to Pound 1,096 million between 2020 and 2021. This increase was driven by wages (+Pound 50.0m) and depreciation (+Pound 7.6m). Net profit (-Pound 13.0m) decreased by 5.2% in the sector.
- Total purchases by the Northern Ireland food and drinks processing sector is estimated to have increased by 12.3% in 2021 to Pound 4,678 million.
- Total purchases increased by the sector from all broad markets of origin. Northern Ireland (+Pound 304.1m) and Great Britain (+Pound 131.7m) experienced the largest increases. In 2021, Northern Ireland remains the sectors largest market for purchases at 65.7% of total purchases; a decrease from 66.5% in 2020.