GENEVA, Feb. 22 (Xinhua) -- Sales of Swiss chocolate grew by 3.1 percent in 2017 thanks to foreign demand, despite a decline in domestic consumption, Chocosuisse reported Thursday.
Chocosuisse, the Federation of Swiss Chocolate Manufacturers, reported total sales of 1.85 billion Swiss francs (1.98 billion U.S. dollars) for the year.
The total volume of chocolate sold also increased by 2.7 percent to 190,731 tons, said the 80-year-old federation.
However, sales inside Switzerland dropped by 1.3 percent.
Swiss residents consumed "only" 10.5 kilograms of chocolate a person in 2017; half a kilo less than the year before.
It was the growth in exports that offset the decline in domestic consumption.
The volume sold abroad increased by 4.8 percent to 127,923 tonnes, while total export turnover increased by 6.9 percent to 936 million Swiss francs.
After a three-year decline, the German market climbed in 2017, reporting a 16 percent increase in sales.
Except for the United States, which was down by 7 percen), the other top five consumer destinations also grew: the UK by 2 percent, France by 8 percent and Canada by 6 percent.
Among the top 20, Australia and Russia posted the highest growth rates.
The markets in Brazil, China, Israel, Singapore, Spain and Sweden are also thriving - "rated between good and very good," said Chocosuisse.
In 2017, Chocosuisse counted 18 chocolate manufacturers among its members who employed 4,608 people. (1 U.S. dollar=0.93 Swiss franc) Enditem