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The fruit and vegetable sector is feeling upbeat about Fruit Attraction 2021, which will be an in-person event

Fruit Attraction, the international trade fair for the fruit and vegetable sector, has confirmed that it is receiving numerous applications to take part in the next edition. The event is organised by IFEMA MADRID and FEPEX and has been scheduled to take place from 5 to 7 October. Already, 150 days before the fair kicks off, participation levels are the same as they were in 2019, on the same date.

25 May 2021

According to fair director Raúl Calleja, “Several factors have come together that make for a very positive scenario for an in-person edition of Fruit Attraction 2021. The event is unanimously acknowledged by the fruit and vegetable sector as a major marketing platform for planning the annual campaign”. Among other benefits, he highlighted “international fair activity has already started in Spain and other large European countries; positive trends in vaccination rates in the EU (which is expected to reach 95% in the professional field by October), and non-EU countries that receive European exports, as well as the arrival of European recovery funds, and promising economic data from the third and fourth quarters of 2021”.

The fair organisers have already received confirmation that all Spain's production areas and autonomous regions will be taking part, and representatives from 28 countries* will also take part. What’s more, 20% of these participants are first-time companies, "which is evidence of the entire sector's commitment to this special retail event”, said Calleja.

Jorge Brotons, president of the fair Organising Committee and Fepex says that this shows “this is a very important event, which coincides with the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables declared by the FAO, and that it will also be significant to the visibility of a sector that has proven strategic to the economy, employment and food supplies for the population. We are, therefore, extremely grateful for the support received from companies in 2021, and are keen to join and contribute to this great international event for the fruit and vegetable sector”.

International mobility facilities

International participation in Fruit Attraction, which is expected to be excellent, will get a boost from the gradual relaxation of the travel restrictions currently affecting international visitors from non-EU areas. This will be helped by the recently-approved European Union "EU COVID-19 Travel Passport”, which will come into effect on 1 July and will allow people who have been vaccinated or who are immune after having had COVID-19 in the last six months or have a negative PCR or antigen test certificate to move freely in the European Union.

Fruit Attraction 2021 will be housed in eight halls on the IFEMA MADRID trade fair facilities. The city will become the epicentre of the global fresh fruit and vegetable industry, and a showcase for innovation, quality and diversity. It is already recognised as a key event for operators and retailers around the globe, essential for planning campaigns in October, which is a strategic month for the sector.

Sector-based approach

This time, Fruit Attraction has added new features such as Fresh Food Logistics, a new sector platform for service logistics, transportation and management of the fresh food cold chain.Additional space has been allocated for farming technology sectors (Biotech Attraction; Smart Agro; Smart Water & Energy). As usual, Fresh Convenience (ready-prepared and ready-cooked ranges), are trending this year.

The fair will also host startups, because the fruit and vegetable sector is a key market for investment funds. The avocado has won a leading role this time, with the Fresh&Star area.

As usual, the Innovation Hub space, joined by Innova Forum, will bring together innovation and avant-garde products from the sector. The fair will also host the Accelera Awards for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, which have become an established event supporting entrepreneurship in the sector.

International Buyers Programme

Fruit Attraction gives participants opportunities for international momentum and expansion.  Which is why IFEMA is making significant investments in the International Buyers Programme, which will attract buyers from all over the world to Madrid as well as international retail procurement managers, importers and guest wholesalers with support from ICEX and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fishing and Food.

As well as this programme, there is a 'Guest Importing Country initiative'. This time, the special guests are Brazil and the Ukraine. Through this, Fruit Attraction will encourage trade relations with both markets, covered by a complete programme of round table discussions, guided tours around the fair and B2B sessions.

Technical Seminars

This meeting will be another opportunity for debate and sharing knowledge about the latest developments in the sector. During the three-day event, Fruit Attraction will host an extensive programme of technical conferences with sessions such as the Biofruit Congress; Fresh Food Logistics Summit; Biotech Attraction and Smart Water&Energy.

As well as the physical gathering, the fair will bring the entire fruit and vegetable community together year-round with Fruit Attraction LIVEConnect platform, a digital tool that enhances and complements the on-site event with new features to enhance both initiatives. With this, Fruit Attraction, which is organised by IFEMA MADRID and FEPEX, will be far more than an in-person sectoral reunion, offering a new hybrid value proposition that adds the effectiveness of technology to its physical aspects.

*Countries confirmed as of 25 May: Germany; Belgium; Bulgaria; Chile; Colombia; Ivory Coast; Costa Rica; Ecuador; Spain; USA; France; Ghana; Greece; Italy; Kenya; Morocco; Mexico; Netherlands; Poland; Portugal; UK; Czech Republic; Dominican Republic; Republic of Moldova; South Africa; Sweden; Turkey and Ukraine.