Hein Deprez, executive chairman of international fresh produce company Univeg, has been confirmed as one of the keynote speakers at this year's Eurofruit Congress Southern Hemisphere, which takes place in Cape Town on 16-18 October 2013.
Deprez, who last month partnered with a consortium of European and South African families to acquire 100 per cent of the company and regain control of the business he founded, will speak about changes in the global market for fresh fruit and vegetables, outlining his vision for the trade's future development in established markets like Europe as well as emerging ones like Asia.
This year's Eurofruit Congress Southern Hemisphere will focus on the growing dilemma facing exporters not only in South Africa but across the Southern Hemisphere: whether to concentrate their efforts on traditional markets or to divert product to newer and potentially more rewarding parts of the global marketplace.
The conference programme will look at the various opportunities and challenges for exporters in both Europe and Asia, delivering insight from experts working in the fresh produce business across the two continents and offering ideas on how best to achieve the right balance between serving existing clients and breaking commercial new ground.
"A lot of new opportunities appear to be presenting themselves in the emerging markets of Asia, but we also feel there is a certain amount of untapped potential in more traditional markets for Southern Hemisphere fruit," commented Mike Knowles, conference moderator and editor of Eurofruit. "In Cape Town, we want to consider what are the priorities in terms of those opportunities for growth around the world and what challenges will those markets present to growers and exporters?"
Knowles will be joined by Asiafruit editor John Hey, who will co-moderate the conference and provide delegates with updates on the recent growth of fresh produce markets in Asia. Key players from Asia are also due to take part, with one session devoted to recent and future developments in China.
Also included in this year's conference programme will be discussions about the international consolidation of retail sourcing and distribution, developments in the field of fresh produce logistics and a look at how growers, exporters, and other stakeholders in South Africa's fresh produce export business can ensure their products and services remain competitive.
More information about this year's Eurofruit Congress Southern Hemisphere, including details of how to register, is available on the official event website