IT Trentina apples

Apples from the Trentino region have been marketed extensively at trade shows around the world

Algeria has become Italy's biggest export market for fruit grown in the Italian province of Trentino, according to a report published by financial institution Intesa San Paolo.

The report found that sales of Trentino fruit, predominately apples, reached €3.5m during the first three months of this year, around three times the amount achieved in the same period of 2012.

That rise has taken Algeria above Germany – despite a 32 per cent increase in sales there to €2.8m – and Spain, where sales doubled to around €2.6m.

Denmark reportedly took more fruit as well, but Egypt saw a decline in sales due to the ongoing political unrest.

Apples grown in the Italian provinces of Trentino and South Tyrol are among a number of fresh fruits that are becoming increasingly popular on the southern shores of the Mediterranean, pushing up overall export performance, the report said.

During the first three months of 2013, sales of fruit including apples from the north-east region of Italy to foreign markets were worth €23m, compared with €20m in January-March 2012.

Apples from Trentino saw a notable surge in popularity, with sales up 13.2 per cent on the previous period, while sales of apples from South Tyrol were up 10.5 per cent year on year.