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Spain: Murcia exhibits the quality of its fruits and vegetables

The Region of Murcia has taken part in the international fair for fruits and vegetables, Fruit Attraction, in Madrid, with the presence of more than 70 Murcian companies, which already make shipments to around 100 countries worldwide and aim to increase their export volumes.

800 square metres were reserved for the Region of Murcia and taken by companies associated to Apoexpa, Fecoam, Proexport and the Regulatory Board of the Protected Designation of Origin "Pear from Jumilla", which represent 75% of the Region's total agricultural exports. Another 200 professionals from the producing and exporting sector and Murcian cooperatives were also present. The Councillor of Agriculture and Water, Antonio Cerdá, visited the fair, which was opened by the Minister of Agriculture, Food and Environment, Miguel Arias Cañete.

Cerdá stressed that "Fruit Attraction is a mandatory visit for the Region's sector, as it is one of the most modern and competitive." He added that "very few regions have such a productive diversity, which is the result of innovative growing techniques that are also exemplary for the rest of the world."

In this sense, he highlighted how 98.5% of Murcia's horticultural productions "contain lower pesticide levels than those established by European regulations," and that "60% are completely residue-free, which contrasts with the high pesticide levels found in products imported from other countries; something which clients truly appreciate."

He pointed out that "we have an export-oriented agriculture", and stressed how 7 out of 10 fruits and vegetables produced in the Region are shipped overseas. "The EU is the traditional market for Murcia's exports, but the sector is also reaching Eastern Europe, Russia or Arab Emirates."

The leader stated that "the success of Murcian products lies on their quality, variety and food safety, and the Region's companies and cooperatives are making a great effort to find new contacts to expand commercially."

Leading exporters
The British market was the largest importer of Murcian fruits and vegetables last year. It was followed by Germany, France and Italy, while the United States and Switzerland were the largest non-EU consumers of the Region's products.

The value of the Region of Murcia's fruit and vegetable exports has maintained a steady growth, increasing by 20% over the past 10 years. The sector's exports in 2012 made a total of 2,000 million Euro, which represents a 14% increase compared to the previous year and 28% of the total value of Spain's exports.

The Region of Murcia is one of Europe's leading producers, and is the largest national exporter of products such as lettuce, broccoli, grapes, lemon and melon, which are mainly shipped to the EU.


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