Artichoke consumption in Spain is expected to grow by 5% in the new campaign, mostly thanks to an increase in its quality due to the abundant rainfall recorded so far this autumn. This was reported by the Artichoke of Spain Association during its 5th Annual General Assembly, held this week at the international fair Fruit Attraction (IFEMA-Madrid).
This forecast comes also with new plantings made in recent weeks and the removal of the least productive ones. Moreover, producers assure that, if the weather does not damage the crops, both the prices and the demand will also be good. "Consumers look for quality products with a good reputation on the shelves of supermarkets, so this vegetable's market will be considerably stimulated," said Antonio Galindo, president of Artichoke of Spain.
According to Galindo, the production volume in the upcoming campaign will remain at 220,000 tons, although with a bigger commitment to fresh marketing (without neglecting the processing industry). Consequently, the percentages devoted to each industry will again be in line with those of previous years (60% for canning and freezing and 40% for fresh consumption, compared to 70% and 30%, respectively, in the previous campaign).
During the meeting, the Artichoke of Spain team has also shown its support to the efforts made by the food groups Agrupal and Proexport ahead of the tariff reductions for the entry of processed artichoke in the United States, which should make the Spanish product much more competitive.
For his part, Crisanto Ampuero, agronomist at Numhems-BASF, a partner of Artichoke of Spain, gave a motivational presentation at the general meeting of the association. He talked about the future challenges for all actors involved in bringing this vegetable to the consumer. Among these challenges, he highlighted focusing on the product's healthy benefits, the trend among younger people of purchasing ready-to-eat food and doing their groceries at supermarkets, and the importance of betting on marketing in order to build a brand's reputation.