Table 4

SWOT analysis of hemp-based food products in Sicily.

Strengths Weaknesses
Relevant for crop diversification in wheat-based systems
Relatively simple products already developed and tested
Nutritional quality (proteins content, quality fats)
Origin EU/Italy/Sicily
Potential capacity for quality differentiation versus imported products?
Still some confusion in consumers’ mindset (drug versus food) → requires a certain investment in communication
Still limited local processing capacity (but local actors are interested in investing)
Coordination and strategic orientation of the sector not yet structured
Opportunities Threats
Italian food culture includes pasta and oil consumption, making the potential market very large (although specific pasta and oil still represents a change in habits)
Tourism = interest for local, high quality products
Countries with large production are very competitive (eastern Europe, Canada, China)
Risk of competition versus coordination in the territory
Growth of the acreage may lead to increased pest pressure8

According to O’Brien and Arathi (2019), as cultivation of hemp continues to expand, insect pests on hemp could become prevalent.

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