Portugal Fresh Catarina Ravara

Portugal Fresh marketing and communications manager Catarina Ravara

Portugal Fresh is targeting three new markets in 2017 as part of its efforts to increase exports to €2 billion by 2020.

The organisation, which promotes Portuguese fruit, vegetables and flowers around the world, will set out on business missions to Colombia, Mexico and China in May, July and September respectively.

Its aim in Mexico and China will be to identify new clients and open the markets to Portugese imports, while in Colombia – to which Portugal recently gained access for the export of Rocha pears already – the focus will be on increasing volumes.

Initial trade will centre on Rocha pears in all three countries, according to marketing and communications manager Catarina Ravara, but further down the line raspberries may also be targeted, having overtaken Rocha pears as Portugal’s number one fresh produce export in 2015.

In a recent interview with the Portugal Fresh magazine, the country’s secretary of state for agriculture and food, Luis Medeiros Vieira, was upbeat about Portugal’s potential to boost its fresh produce exports – and reach the country’s target of achieving export revenues of €2 billion by 2020.

“Between 2007 and 2015, national exports of fruits and vegetables have grown by six per cent when compared to the same period in 2015,” he said. “This positive signal, together with the conclusion of the phytosanitary agreements for the export of table grapes to Brazil and of pear to Colombia… indicates that the goal of the sector exporting €2bn is reachable.”