''It's a big win for Colombia to join the WAO''

Colombia becomes a member of World Avocado Organization

The World Avocado Organization (WAO), the first and only organization in the world to boost consumption of avocados in Europe, welcomes Colombia as a new member. The announcement took place during the opening of Asia Fruit Logistica, Hong Kong's annual international fruit and vegetable trade fair. Among the WAO members are leading avocado growing countries such as Mexico, Peru, the US, South Africa, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Spain.

"It's a big win for Colombia to join the WAO. We look forward to working together to supply the European avocado market, which has exploded in recent years. We are looking forward to continuing the successful WAO activities of the past months in Europe over the fall and winter together with the Colombian Hass avocado industry," said Zac Bard, chairman of the WAO.


Xavier Equihua, CEO of the World Avocado Organization (WAO)

One of the largest avocado producers worldwide
Colombia is home to some of the world's most important Hass avocado producers and exporters, including Fruty Green, Cartama and Westfalia Fruit Colombia, all of whom are officially joining the WAO. Colombia has recently entered the market for Hass avocados, but is already one of the largest producers and exporters in the world. Currently, more than 15,000 hectares of Hass aocados are grown and the unprecedented rise continues. The country's agricultural forecast remains positive.

"Avocado production in Colombia has grown rapidly in recent years. Between 2012 and 2016, it grew by 550 percent annually. We are pleased to announce Colombia as one of the directors of the WAO and we will work together to increase avocado supply and consumption in the European market," commented Xavier Equihua, managing director of WAO.

Great development potential
"The production of Hass avocados in Colombia is growing at unparalleled speed. At the same time, consumption in Europe is rising immensely. In 2017, more than 510 million kilograms of avocados were sold. Joining the WAO will help Colombia unlock its full potential and capitalize on the significant opportunities in the European avocado market," said Daniel Bustamante, vice chairman of the WAO.

Members of the WAO cover almost the entire European market. With the accession of Colombia and Spain this year, WAO members now cover 70 percent of the avocados sold in Europe.

On October 22, 2018, the WAO will hold its half-yearly meeting in Madrid, one day before the start of Fruit Attraction, the international fruit and vegetable trade fair.

About the World Avocado Organization (WAO)
The World Avocado Organization (WAO) was founded in 2016. Some of the world's largest producers, exporters and importers of avocados are represented in the organization, for example from countries such as Mexico, Peru, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and the United States. The primary goal of the World Avocado Organization (WAO) is to increase awareness of the beneficial properties of avocados and to increase the world's fruit consumption. Europe is one of the fastest growing markets for avocados and is already the second largest market for the import of avocados. The WAO expects a further consumption increase of 15 percent annually for the next five years.
 
For more information: www.avocadofruitoflife.com

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