UK market largest after France
The speciality food market is set to be worth£4.2 billion by 2011, according to a report by independent market analyst Datamonitor. The sector was worth£3.6 billion last year.

The survey found that the UK has Europe's largest speciality food market after France, with people spending an average of£56 each a year on products such as gourmet coffee and artisanal chocolates. French consumers spend an average of£80 a head.

Datamonitor consumer markets analyst Matthew Adams said: 'One of the most important drivers has been the democratisation of luxury, with consumers of all income groups purchasing whichever premium products they can afford.'

Health is also a driving factor - more than two thirds of the population believe it is important or very important to reduce their consumption of processed food and drink.