Mercabarna has announced the opening of Biomarket, Europe’s first wholesale market dedicated exclusively to organic fruit and vegetables and the first organic food wholesale market in Spain.
The €5m, 8,900m2 market was built to cater for growing consumer demand for organic produce in Catalonia. It houses 21 points of sale: 16 for wholesale companies, two for agricultural cooperatives and three for multi-product wholesalers selling items such as legumes, cereals, nuts, pasta, rice, dairy, oil, vinegar and drinks.
The Biomarket also has a dedicated area where small, local farmers can sell their produce direct. Another area for the sale of local products, which will be open to all farmers in Catalonia, will be in operation by the end of the first quarter of 2021.
Mercabarna hopes that the market will capture 20 per cent of the total volume of organic fruit and vegetables sold in Catalonia, equivalent to 23,662 tonnes a year in its first year, climbing to 50 per cent (78,100 tonnes) by 2031.
The building was designed to optimise natural ventilation and light in order to minimise energy consumption. The roof and support structure are made from sustainably sourced wood, and it is equipped with solar panels and energy-efficient artificial lighting and efficient chamber cooling systems.
It was built to commemorate Barcelona being named the World Capital of Sustainable Food 2021, recognising its commitment to a promoting healthier, more sustainably sourced food and acting as a catalyst for local agriculture and business.
The Biomarket will operate to the same schedule as Mercabarna Central Fruit and Vegetable Market, opening from Monday to Friday, from 9am to 5pm.