European veg event to offer new ideas

The international marketing magazine for fresh produce buyers in Europe
Mike Knowles

BY MIKE KNOWLES

@mikefruitnet

European veg event to offer new ideas

Suppliers and retailers heading for European Vegetable Strategies in Brussels as fall in consumption raises concerns

European veg event to offer new ideas

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European Vegetable Strategies, the region's first ever conference and networking event dedicated to the fresh vegetable business, will attempt to identify new ways to boost demand and improve the range of products and merchandising found in the EU fresh vegetable sector.

The event, which takes place in Brussels on 4-5 June, has been organised by Eurofruit, Fruchthandel and Fresh Produce Journal in response to a growing need for ideas, information and insight within the European vegetable sector.

Vegetables are a key part of the European fresh produce market, with around 40m tonnes worth approximately €250m produced every year in the EU, yet consumption of fresh vegetables in the region continues to decline.

"Changing this trend is a major challenge for all of us," commented Chris White, managing director of Eurofruit. "With European Vegetable Strategies, we want to develop new and innovative marketing solutions that will boost demand for fresh vegetables."

The congress, which includes a one-day conference on 5 June, will be tailored precisely to the vegetable sector, according to Fruchthandel's Kaasten Reh.

"Experts from all parts of the supply chain, from production to the European retail sector, will analyse the market and discuss innovations and ideas that could give the business an additional boost," he explained.

Programme highlights include:

• Innovation - new ideas to boost sales
• Consumption in Europe - figures, trends, facts
• The vegetable market in Europe - challenges and opportunities
• Tomatoes – varieties, presentation, packaging
• Convenience – potential for growth
• New media – which channels work best?
• Sustainability – optimising processes, cutting costs

Up-to-date programme information can be found at www.vegetablecongress.com.

In addition to plenary and break-out sessions, the organisers also plan to give delegates the option of joining study tours to a fresh vegetable production and marketing facility in the greater Brussels area, as well as to retail centres to focus on how fresh vegetables and salads are merchandised and marketed to shoppers.

During the evening of 4 April, there will be an informal get-together for all delegates, speakers and guests at De Ultieme Hallucinatie, a beautiful Art Nouveau-style brasserie-restaurant in the centre of Brussels – a unique opportunity to meet and network with leading players in the European vegetable business.

"We are expecting delegates from across the entire value chain to be in Brussels, from seed suppliers to retailers," added Reh. "The event will provide the right environment to develop new strategies for fresh vegetable production, trade and marketing with some of the most important market partners at an international level."

To secure your place at European Vegetable Strategies and benefit from special discounted rates for early bookings, head to www.vegetablecongress.com, where you can also find information about sponsoring the event.

Alternatively, you can contact Chris White or Kaasten Reh directly:

Chris White
Tel +44 20 7501 3710
chris@fruitnet.com

Kaasten Reh
Tel +49 211 9910410
kr@fruchthandel.de

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