It’s no surprise that pizza is a popular dish around the world. This fast-food favorite has traveled extensively with immigrants and found a welcoming home nearly everywhere that it’s landed. While you might expect the United States to take the lead in global pizza consumption, we’re not at the head of the pack! Pizza is consumed in massive quantities in several other countries as well.
Norway – Consumers of the Great Frozen Pie
If you think we eat a lot of pizza in America, you should see what they’re consuming in Norway! On average, each person in Norway eats about 11 pounds of pizza a year. This is a monumental number when you consider that pizza wasn’t even a well-known dish in Norway until the 1970s and 1980s.
Interestingly, the majority of these pizzas aren’t made in restaurants. Instead, Norwegians prefer to pop a frozen pie in the oven and dine at home. Throughout the country, 47 million frozen pizzas are consumed annually.
Since we tend to prefer freshly made pizzas here in the United States, it may seem unusual for Norway to have such a strong preference for the boxed, frozen variety. They may have access to something that we don’t, however. A full 50% of the frozen pizzas eaten in Norway are Grandiosa brand pizzas. Grandiosa pizza is so well-known in the country that 20% of the population said they consider it an unofficial national dish.
Grandiosa makes 18 varieties of frozen pizza, the most popular of which is the Grandiosa Classic with tomato sauce, Jarlsberg cheese, ham, and paprika. Each year, Grandiosa sells more than 9 million of this particular pizza pie.
This isn’t to say that pizza restaurants don’t exist in Norway. In fact, you’ll find that they’re now commonly paired with popular kebab restaurants. Not only can you purchase pizza alongside kebabs, but you can also get your pizza topped with kebabs. Other pizza toppings you may find in Norwegian restaurants include bearnaise sauce and french fries, although not necessarily together.
The United States – Hundreds of Slices a Second
The USA takes second place for pizza consumption. Though we’re considered the fast-food capital of the world, our choices are so diverse that pizza takes a smaller overall share. Americans still chow down on an impressive number of slices, though. Our total annual pizza consumption breaks down to a whopping 350 slices every second. The average American eats 40 pizzas each year. It’s no surprise then that 93% of Americans have eaten pizza in the last month and each day about 13% of the population eats pizza in some form.
Just what form is that, you ask? Pepperoni is the most popular topping, with Americans consuming 251.7 pounds of it each year. Sixty-two percent of Americans prefer meat toppings, while 38% like vegetable toppings better. Women are twice as likely to order a vegetarian pizza than men. Thin crust is preferred by 61% of people.
The United Kingdom – A Fast-Food Favorite
Pizza is the fast food of choice in the U.K. More than half of the population in the United Kingdom consumes pizza at least once every 10 days. The average Brit eats 731 pizzas over the course of their lifetime — or 5,847 slices. Pepperoni is a favorite here as well, followed by Margherita pizza with mozzarella and tomato. The third most popular pizza in the U.K. is highly contentious in the states! Hawaiian pizza loaded with ham and pineapple comes in third place across the pond.
In the United Kingdom, one person in every five states that pizza isn’t just great for convenience, it’s actually their favorite food of all. Consumption has risen steadily since 2016. In 2018/2019, each person in the U.K. consumed an average of 89 grams of pizza each week. Oxford has the highest pizza consumption in the country followed by Glasgow, Liverpool, and London.
Germany – A Growing Trend
Germany takes fourth place for worldwide consumption of pizza. A hundred slices of pizza are consumed each second in Germany. While this is only a fraction of what we’re eating in America, it’s no small amount. The pizza market in Germany is seeing strong growth. The sales value of pizza increased 0.49% between 2017 and 2018, and another 0.44% from 2018 to 2019.
While our Americanized pizzas are taking a foothold in Germany, the country also has its own pizza delicacy that gets a lot of love. Known as Flammkuchen, this distinctive pizza pie hails from southern Germany and the Alsace region of France. In its most traditional preparation, Flammkuchen is prepared in a wood-fired oven that perfects the thin crispy crust. On top, you’ll find bacon, onions, and creme fraiche. Also popular in Germany is tuna-topped pizza, which you’re unlikely to find anywhere in the states.
Italy – The Home of Pizza
Napoli, Italy is thought to be the birthplace of Italian pizza, but this country consumes a surprisingly small amount of it compared to the other players on this list. Each day, approximately 1 million pizzas are consumed in Italy. Pizza here is popular both among locals and tourists who want to try a taste of authentic Italian cuisine. There are around 63,000 pizzerias in Italy, employing about 100,000 pizza makers. Each day of the week, these pizzerias produce an average of 80 pizzas.
You can find nearly any type of pizza in Italy. Each region tends to produce different specialties, from four-cheese pizzas made with a selection of local cheeses to seafood pizzas featuring tuna, shellfish, anchovies, and shrimp. Italian pizzerias also serve dessert pizzas fairly often, with toppings like honey, jam, or Nutella. This makes it easy to consume pizza through every course of your meal!
Have you sampled pizzas from around the globe? Contact our team at Pequod’s Pizza and let us know about your culinary discoveries. While you’re at it, place an order for a hot, fresh pizza pie of your own. We deliver locally and ship nationwide so you can get a taste no matter where you are.