More than half of the apple from Alcobaça exported this year will be consumed in Brazil, under the scope of a project promoted by the producers association in that market, which acquired six million kilos of the fruit.
“The export market for Alcobaça’s apple should reach 20% of production this year and more than 10% of the apples are destined to Brazil”, said today Jorge Soares, president of the Alcobaça Apple Producers Association (APMA), to Lusa news agency, estimating that the Brazilian market will consume “five to six million kilos” of this fruit this year.
The focus in the Brazilian market results from the “Project for the Promotion of the Apple of Alcobaça in External Markets”, an investment of 650 thousand euros, co-financed in 85% by the European Community and which, according to APMA, intends to give stage to “a new wave of flavour coming from Portugal” from the “only apple from the Atlantic”.
The project was developed in the last two years and focused, in the first year, on the production of content, and, this year, on the implementation of international promotion and marketing actions in the Brazilian market, through “campaigns in supermarkets, social networks, blogs and the media”, said Jorge Soares.
According to the APMA chairman, the choice of Brazil was due to the fact that “this year the production had the same number of fruit, but less kilos, and the fruit was smaller, but with more flavour”, which led to betting on a market that “values flavour, consumes small fruit and this year had a production drop that made the Brazilian apple only arrive until November”.
Due to this circumstance and the promotional campaign, APMA went from “a historical year with the lowest export to Brazil, with only 4% last year, to an export of over 10% this year, the highest of the last five years”, he added.
The results of the project which “defines a positioning based on the ‘Atlantic Apple’ concept, since the Apple from Alcobaça is the only one with Atlantic influence” and whose characteristics are due to “the very specific interactions between the Atlantic sea breeze and the ‘terroir’ of the production area” were presented on Saturday at the head-office of the company Embala na Hora, in Óbidos.
To Lusa, Jorge Soares admitted the intention to advance with new applications for promotion projects that, if approved, and depending on the percentage of contribution, may focus on one of three international markets: Arab countries, Spain or England.
Founded in 2001, APMA is the managing entity of the Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) “Massa de Alcobaça” and owner of the brand and collective image.
Constituted by 22 associates, companies and producers’ organisations that produce the IGP “Maçã de Alcobaça”, its mission is the promotion and valorisation of qualified apples from the west region.