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El Salvador: Super Selectos studies the market to lower imports

Salvadoran supermarket chain, Super Selectos, is making a diagnosis of the entire supply of fruit and vegetables in order to identify opportunities for local farmers to supply the chain stores.

The study, which was born as a follow up to the Growing Opportunities project, which identified the hundred bestselling products in their stores now includes all fruit and vegetables.

The head of corporate relations, Ximena Robin, said that although the study is not complete, there are opportunity areas that have already been identified, such as the chard, bananas and twelve types of lettuce.

Robin mentioned that most of these products come from Guatemala and that they are opportunities that El Salvador has lost, as at least 1,360 kilos of one type of lettuce were sold daily.

She said that, in conjunction with the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG), they were identifying areas in El Salvador where the products required by the supermarket could be farmed.

Another opportunity identified by the diagnostic lies in the products’ varieties. "Green peppers, which we offer and are smaller, are provided wholly by domestic producers, but the largest green pepper, which is about six inches big, is completely imported from Guatemala because we haven’t found a producer in El Salvador that can provide us peppers of that size and quality, " said Robin.

According to the executive, this is a plan that focuses on increasing El Salvador’s 100% grown product offer, as their bet for 2015 is to reduce the current 75% of imported products to 50% or 60%. In the last two years the supermarket has increased purchases to domestic producers from 5% to 25%, according to data provided by Robin.

"We are choosing new suppliers who meet quality standards and, primarily, that are associated," she said.


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