Origine Group Fruitaly Salvi Unacoa kiwifruit Alessandro Zampagna Marco Salvi

Pictured (l-r): Alessandro Zampagna and Marco Salvi with the first consignment of kiwifruit for Mexico, prior to its departure

Italian fresh produce consortium Origine Group is poised to achieve another major trade breakthrough following the departure of the country's first container of kiwifruit bound for Mexico from the Port of Genoa.

The North American market recently opened after a bilateral agreement between Mexico and Italy was signed in June 2019, an accord which has seen relevant phytosanitary barriers removed.

“It is our first load of top-quality kiwifruit for this new overseas market, which this season opened to the Italian product,' confirmed Origine's managing director Alessandro Zampagna.

'This is a further progress in our mission of developing overseas markets, where we want to sell our best fruits.”

Despite a fall in production volumes for Italy this season, the country's kiwifruit export campaign is understood to have started positively.

“Last season we exported more than 2,000 tonnes of Italian kiwifruit,' Zampagna noted, 'a volume we hope to increase significantly this year.'

Origine Group, which brings together some of the leading fruit export marketers in both Italy and Chile, is looking beyond Europe and Asia for further opportunities to grow its business, raising the strategic importance of various markets on the American continent.

“After this first year, where the main objective is to create the commercial relationships with the Mexican clients, in the future we hope to grow in a market that can absorb major volumes,” Zampagna added.

Marco Salvi, president of Origine member Salvi Unacoa and also head of Italian fresh produce trade association Fruitimprese, welcomed the news that progress had been made in Mexico.

“In a difficult moment for the Italian fruit & vegetable sector, the possibility to sell our kiwifruit to Mexico is a first success, reached thanks to the commitment of the Ministry of Agriculture and the National Phytosanitary Service, and it is vital to have openings of other markets in the future.'