Food: It’s on the menu

NOVEMBER 2011

11-04-01Food and beverage is one of the most dynamic sectors of the Spanish economy. By definition, it arouses significant interest because of both its economic impact and the popular face of nutrition, cooking, and gastronomy.

Fira, which hosts Alimentaria, one of the largest events in the industry, will play home to a new, specialized trade fair, Seafood Barcelona, starting in 2012. However, beforehand, a quite different event, Barcelona Degusta – which focuses on cherished gastronomic products – will arrive just in time for the Christmas holidays.

Seafood Barcelona: The richness of the sea

In fall 2012, Seafood Barcelona will be a foil to the most important worldwide trade show on fishery products, the European Seafood Exposition which is held each year in Brussels. The project is a result of an agreement between Alimentaria Exhibitions – a joint venture with Reed Exhibitions and Fira de Barcelona, who organizes the Alimentaria Trade Show, among other events – and Diversified Business Communications, an American group.

Seafood Barcelona is one of the most important international events for the agro-food and fishing industries and will again make Barcelona a major player in terms of the economic potential of the agro-food industry, which is highly developed in Catalonia.

11-04-02In comparison with other Spanish cities which hoped to host the event, Barcelona stands out for numerous reasons, which include its significant experience in hosting trade shows and important international events such as EIBTM, the Mobile World Congress, Itma, major medical congresses and Alimentaria itself, among others; connections with businesses, institutions and other operators in the food chain; and top-notch exhibition venues.

Other key factors include being well-connected, the city’s positioning in the Euro-Mediterranean Area, and the city’s role as a hub which connects Europe to Latin America.

The goal of the first edition of Seafood Barcelona is to fill 12,000 m2 of floor space, attracting 300 exhibitors and high-profile visiting professionals. Seafood Barcelona, which targets the Spanish market and Southern Europe, will include all types of seafood as well as equipment and technology for processing these products. The event will be attended by official bodies, organizations, and businesses representing fresh, canned, and frozen products and a variety of services.

Spain is a major fishing power, both in terms of production and processing of raw materials and in terms of domestic consumption. Furthermore, Spain is the third most important international preserve manufacture, behind only China and Thailand, and is the top exporter in the European Union.

Barcelona Degusta: Gastronomy on the rise

For food and gastronomy lovers, Barcelona Degusta is a must. The fair will take place at the Montjuïc venue from December 2nd to 4th, a new time which aims to put the fair closer to the Christmas season, an important period for the consumption of gourmet and up-market products.

11-04-03The event, which enjoys widespread popular support, brought together more than 41,500 visitors at its last edition, which featured more than 2,000 products related to food and gastronomy, an industry which is marked by constant innovation.

Barcelona Degusta will be celebrated yearly. Thanks to an agreement with Alimentaria Exhibitions, who had organized the event until now, the next three editions of the trade show will be put on by Fira de Barcelona.

The Spanish food industry (2010)

· 81.369 billion euros in net sales
· 16% total industry share and 8% of Spanish GDP
· Top industrial sector in the Spanish economy; fifth in Europe.
· 30,261 businesses (96% SMEs) with 445,475 employees; 17% of all industrial employment.
· 16.776€ billion in exports and 16.012€ billion in imports, generating a net positive of 765€ million.
· 642€ million invested abroad (49% of total investments) and 706 € million in foreign investment in Spain.

R.P.