Fruit, a driving and attractive sector
From the snow-capped peaks of the Pyrenees to the wetlands of the Ebro Delta, the landscape of Catalonia is uniquely picturesque. It holds an ever-changing and temperamental appeal by adapting to new technologies, which make the climate and the land into almost steadfast pillars. These very pillars give us one of the agri-food sector's most important assets: fruit.
With its diverse land and mild Mediterranean climate, Catalonia produces a wide range of fruit and is one of Europe's main fruit producers. Its arable land, exceptional organoleptic properties, significance to the economy of Spain, and high exports generate 980 Mn in annual turnover (3.7% of the sector).
Over a million tonnes of fruit and citrus fruit are produced on 55,000 hectares of fruit plantations, including apples, pears, peaches, nectarines and many others. Catalan fruit stands out for its high quality and flavour, and is spreading on international markets.
Catalonia is the largest producing region in Spain, exporting 65% of its production and selling to some of the most stringent international chains in terms of quality, traceability and food safety. The main export destinations are Germany, France, Italy, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. Its prime location makes Catalonia one of the top European producers: it is ninth-largest for peach and nectarine, eighteenth for pear, and thirty-seventh for apple.
Transportation times are crucial for exporting. Catalonia has an industry in which all players throughout the chain (producers, scientists, customs, health services, government authorities, etc.) ensure that our fruit arrives abroad in the best condition.
The Asian market has skyrocketed in the last few years, although it is still incipient. New destinations such as China (for sweet peaches and sour plums), Japan and India (with the "fruit of the fire" - the persimmon), and even Taiwan (which highly rates the quality of DO apples) are all working on trade protocols.
Some Latin American countries have protocols already in place, such as Mexico for pineapples. Health barriers require that robust safety protocols are set down when negotiating agreements. For comprehensive information on the status of foreign markets, check our export map for the 21 varieties of stone fruit, which was drawn up with a sector working group as part of the Fruit Work Plan.
Company, product and visibility
Prodeca supports companies in the sector with participation and visibility at the main trade fairs in Spain and overseas. These include Fruit Attraction in Madrid, where some 40 companies showcased Catalan fruit production to 90,000 visitors from 130 countries, and Fruit Logistica in Berlin. Prodeca aims to boost the positioning of Catalan companies and products abroad, enabling new business contacts and promulgating the value of fruit grown in Catalonia.
Another example is the Fruit Business Forum, which Prodeca and the Regional Ministry of Agriculture organise for Catalan producers and distributors to do business with importers and distributors from third countries. Argentina, Canada, Colombia, India, Mexico, Singapore and Taiwan will be present at the fourth forum in Barcelona on 25 and 26 April. It is a unique opportunity for the Catalan fruit sector to consolidate a stable platform for international business. Check the PRODECA agenda to stay abreast of upcoming events.