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Monday 7th June 2021, 14:52 London

Sustainable, safe, traceable: EU produce takes centre stage

IN&OUT targets over 50m consumers across Europe, with 10.000+ promotional days booked in for next three years

Sustainable, safe, traceable: EU produce takes centre stage

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Italian company Apo Conerpo’s new IN&OUT project has been given the green light for promotional campaigns in Italy, Austria and Denmark from June.

Funded by a contribution from the European Union, it is aimed at promoting the quality, healthiness and sustainability of European fruit and vegetables and at enhancing the role of producer organisations.

There’s a whole world within European fruit and vegetable production: a world made up of respect for the environment, good agronomic practices, conscious agriculture, and circular economy.

For the next three years, IN&OUT will have the job of telling Italian, Austrian and Danish consumers about this world.

Run by Apo Conerpo, one of Europe’s largest producer organisations (PO), the new project is co-financed by the EU and will promote the sustainability, quality and healthiness of national and EU fruit and vegetable production chains linked to POs, which are an instrument of development and support for tens of thousands of agricultural producers.

“Thanks to IN&OUT, in the next three years, we intend to reach over fifty million consumers, telling them about our commitment to environmental, ethical and economic sustainability,” explains Davide Vernocchi, chairman of Apo Conerpo.

“For over 20 years, as a PO cooperative, we have been promoting the integrated production model among our agricultural members, reducing the use of chemicals and applying methods with low environmental impact in order to obtain high-quality produce without wasting water or depleting the soil, emphasising the seasonal nature of produce, tackling climate change and seeking to assure, at the same time, adequate incomes for producers. As a PO, we can say that we are already moving in the direction of meeting the sustainability targets of the European Green Deal.”  

A great commitment that has not been sufficiently appreciated to date, says Vernocchi. “Sustainability is in our DNA”, he continues, “but now more than ever we have to get across the benefits of national and European fruit and vegetable production chains to both consumers and operators in the sector, truly the ‘last mile’ in a process that begins in our members’ fields and orchards.”

He adds: “We will seek to stress to both parties the advantages of the sustainability of fruit and vegetable production, the healthiness, traceability and, ultimately, the quality of our products. All values that European fruit and vegetable producers, and, in particular, those represented by Apo Conerpo brands, are able to best represent. All the good in European fruit and vegetables starts in the field: and thanks to IN&OUT, we can let everyone know about it.”

Green light for promotional activities from 1 June

The project will be aimed at consumers between the ages of 25 and 64, who are alert to the health-giving aspects of products as well as to issues of ethical and environmental sustainability, and who appreciate production that is short-chain, certified and traceable.

They will be the target of initiatives rolled out by Apo Conerpo business units Alegra, Brio, Naturitalia and Valfrutta Fresco. Together, they will launch a major information and promotional campaign in Italy and international markets, especially Austria and Denmark.

Starting in June, display spaces will be set up in all of Italy’s main supermarket chains, and in similar chains in the two foreign countries: a wide-ranging operation that will see the scheduling of over 10,800 promotional day events over three years. Of these, over 6,200 will be held in Italy, while over 2,200 will take place in both Austria and Denmark.

Over this three-year period, the objective is to attract the attention of over 50m European consumers with IN&OUT’s information and promotional campaigns, aiming to make them more informed and aware of the benefits of national and European fruit and vegetable production.

To back up the communication initiatives and to verify the effectiveness of the scheme, simple opinion questionnaires will be distributed, also giving consumers a chance to take part in exciting prize competitions.

For the first year of the project, a promotion titled ‘Fai il pieno di vitamine’ [Fill up with vitamins] was launched on 1 April 2021. Entrants have the chance to win, up to 31 August 2021, one of 180 juice extractors, ideal for creating delicious, healthy drinks based on fruit and vegetables.     

Website and social media

One of the main focuses of the promotion and dissemination operation is undoubtedly the website www.ineout.eu, available in Italian, German and Danish.

The emphasis is placed on a section devoted to the subject of sustainability in production chains, divided into six macro-areas: conscious agriculture, respect for the environment, circular economy, food safety, traceability, and nutrition. These are backed up by short articles providing more in-depth information about various aspects of the project.

Wide coverage is also given to fruit and vegetable products themselves, with info boxes conveying the most important nutritional aspects and providing recipes based on traditions in various European countries.

At the same time as the website launch, social media pages relating to the project have been set up – increasingly indispensable for developing opinion formation among consumers, and allowing an ever-greater target audience to be reached.

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