The president of Portugal Fresh, an association for the promotion of fruits, vegetables and flowers, indicated that domestic producers aim to reach 500 million euros in exports to Spain in 2019, plus 50 million over the same period.
“If we maintain the average annual growth rate of exports that we have registered since the year 2010, in the order of 10%, we can very soon aim to reach that amount [500 million euros],” said Gonçalo Santos Andrade .
According to the data provided by the association, in 2017, sales of the Portuguese fruit and vegetables sector to the Spanish market totaled 450 million euros, 13.6% more than in the previous year.
Spain, with 47 million inhabitants, is thus “Portugal’s largest trading partner and also the most important customer of the national fruit and vegetable sector”, representing 30.5% of exports, followed by France (12.1%), the United Kingdom (9.4%), the Netherlands (8.2%) and Germany (6.3%).
“Between January and July 2018, there was a slight decrease (-1%) in exports compared to the same period in 2017 (they fell from 948 million euros to 939 million), as a consequence of the prolonged drought that lasted until the month February and the subsequent late rains … which delayed the start of the campaigns and hampered the average sales value of most of the national horticultural products, “Portugal Fresh said in the same document.
In turn, sales to Spain dropped 0.2% to € 223.4 million, “a performance that does not jeopardize the ambitions of domestic producers,” said Gonçalo Santos Andrade.
The association aims to reach 2,000 million euros in exports in 2020, betting on international fairs as one of the elements of the promotion strategy.
Portugal Fresh, together with 42 companies, institutions and partners, will participate, for the eighth consecutive time, in Fruit Attraction, a fair dedicated to fruits and vegetables, which will take place from 23 to 25 October in Madrid.
For the first time, the area occupied by the association exceeds 500 square meters, which represents a rise of 22% over the previous edition.
During the event 70 thousand visitors from 120 countries are expected.