The inaugural Produce Marketing Association (PMA) Fruittrade Latin America will kick off shortly in Santiago, Chile through the collaboration of PMA, Fedefruta (the growers association of Chile) and Yentzen Consulting Group. The first-of-its-kind event for South America is scheduled for November 12-13 and will replace both Fedefruta’s and PMA’s long standing individual conventions in the region.

“This new collaboration is part of PMA’s strategy to help the industry build consumer connections by linking members to the people, markets and insights needed to grow business and increase consumption,” said Nancy Tucker, PMA’s vice president of global business development. “This event is designed to help industry members build connections – to experts, ideas, trends and talent – produce and floral companies can focus on building consumer demand for the products they grow, ship and sell.”

Business round-tables connect retailers, suppliers
A group of international buyers including Associated Wholesale Grocers, Cencosud, Costco Wholesale Canada, Eurosupermercado, Grupo Éxito, Grupo Pao de Acucar/CBD, The Kroger Co., Sam's Wholesale Club, Save-a-lot, Ltd., Spinneys Dubai LLC, Supermercados Tottus, Tesco, and Wal-Mart Mexico, Inc. will participate in a unique “matchmaking” program, otherwise known as the International Business Roundtable. Attendees, including growers from South America and neighbouring regions, will have an opportunity to schedule one-on-one meetings with the buyers thanks to software that will help match buyers and growers who are marketing a particular product.

Oleen Smethurst, Costco Wholesale Canada is enthusiastic about the new event. “I am looking forward to participating in PMA Fruittrade Latin America. I expect to make new connections and that the program will be very enriching and give me the insight I need on key markets.”

Inaugural session to feature Chile’s Minister of Agriculture
Carlos Furche, Minstro Agricultura of Chile will join ProChile’s Director Roberto Paiva, Fedefruta President Juan Carolus Brown and Tesco Sourcing Manager Simon Mandelbaum for PMA Fruittrade Latin America’s inaugural session on November 12. The session will focus on how each organization is addressing the needs of the industry and is one of seven educational workshops designed to assess key opportunities, challenges and trends within the fresh produce industry.

Turning trends into market strategies
Naturipe Vice President of Marketing Robert Verloop will join Nielsen Perishables Vice President Sherry Frey and Cencosud's Stephan von Meyenn for a session titled “Turning Trends into Marketing Strategies” on November 12. The workshop will focus on consumer trends and how they differ around the world. It will also explore the ways Latin American companies can capitalize on opportunities to promote their brands.

"As a grower, the topic of global consumer trends can be so broad that it can be difficult to relate it back to what we grow today and what we should grow in the future,” says Verloop. “How does a grower in Chile respond to the consumer demand of healthier, convenient snacks? I think the answer is in rethinking your supply chain and business models.”

For more information, including the entire education programming for PMA Fruittrade Latin America, visit