Consumption of chocolate in Switzerland dropped slightly last year and sales abroad declined as a result of the strong Swiss franc and downbeat consumer confidence.
A total of 176,332 tons of chocolate products – worth SFr1.7 billion ($1.9 billion) – was sold in 2011, according to the industry association, Chocosuisse.
About a third of chocolate products purchased were imported.
Foreign sales recorded a 0.4 per cent increase to 107,051 tons but in value terms fell by nearly three per cent as a result of the strong franc and the weakening economy in Europe.
Germany, Britain and France were the main export markets in the European Union, while the industry claimed sales increases in Brazil, Israel and the Philippines.
Chocosuisse represents 18 Swiss companies with a total workforce of more than 4,300.