European apple growers have launched a three-year promotional campaign in Malaysia to highlight the benefits of European apples to quality-conscious consumers.
At a launch event held in Kuala Lumpur yesterday (6 June), Her Excellency Maria Castillo Fernandez, head of the delegation of the European Union to Malaysia, and His Excellency Cristiano Maggipinto, the ambassador of Italy to Malaysia, joined a party of senior apple growers from the Italian Alps who outlined their plans to an audience of Malaysian fruit importers, wholesalers and the media.
The three-year European Apples “Natural Goodness from the Italian Alps” promotional campaign will include a series of tasting/sampling events at high-profile Malaysian malls, media outreach activities, as well as influencer and social media engagement initiatives.
Italian apple growers of Trentino South Tyrol will start supplying the Malaysian market with the finest naturally grown apples from autumn of 2019.
These apples will range from classic varieties like Royal Gala, Granny Smith and Fuji to Golden Delicious and Red Delicious, as well as exciting new club varieties including Ambrosia, Evelina, Kanzi, Modi, Pink Lady and Yello. These apples will be available at leading retailers nationwide and pricing will "reflect the premium quality of the product".
Grown high in the Italian Alps where they are nourished by crystal clear glacier springs and bask in abundant sunlight, all of these apple varieties are also available as certified organic.
Her Excellency Maria Castillo Fernandez, stressing that the EU co-funded campaign is designed to generate awareness of the merits of European agricultural production represented by Italian apples, said: “Malaysia is a very important market for the European Union. It is our second largest market in South East Asia, while the European Union is Malaysia's third-largest trading partner.
"Malaysia has a growing middle class and increasing domestic consumption," she continued. "In my time here I have seen myself how Malaysian consumers are growing more interested in healthy high-quality foods and have an increasing appetite for discovering new products. As such I think this is the perfect time to inform them of the unique qualities of European and Italian apples.”
His Excellency Ambassador Cristiano Maggipinto said: “Italian apples are amongst the best produced not only in Europe, but in the world more generally, and as such I am delighted that this campaign is being supported by the European Union. Italian products generally have a strong visibility in Malaysia, but people are not so aware of our historic agricultural heritage.
"I look forward to seeing more natural Italian and European products in Malaysian stores in the next few years and I am sure Malaysian consumers will also appreciate fresh choices”
Italian Alps apple producers representing VOG (Marlene) and Val Venosta companies said, “The Italian Alps is unquestionably one of the most ideal apple-growing regions in the world and as such we are delighted to be working with a range of Malaysian fruit importers and wholesalers to make these delicious products available to discerning Malaysian consumers.
"Italian apples are produced to very stringent standards and are delicious eaten on their own or used as an ingredient in a wide variety of recipes. We are very happy with the response we have had in Malaysia from both importers and the general public and we look forward to being back on Malaysian shelves later this year when our apples are in season again.”