Fruit Logistica 2014: meet 25 Belgian exporters on the VLAM stand

Fruit Logistica 2014: meet 25 Belgian exporters on the VLAM stand
januari 23, 2014

With its annual exports of approximately 418,000 tons, Flandria is Europe’s biggest vegetable brand. So it’s no surprise that the label is well known, especially in the German and French trade. You can get to know the products and sixteen fruit and vegetable suppliers at Fruit Logistica. You will find them on the VLAM stand (Stand B05-B07) in hall 6.2, together with seven colleagues from the potato sector on stand B08 and two fruit tree suppliers, also on stand B08.

The VLAM stand at Fruit Logistica

Belgium is once again strongly represented at Fruit Logistica (5 > 7 February). Sixteen suppliers of fresh fruit and vegetables will be present on the group stand occupied by the VLAM (Flanders' Agricultural Marketing Board). They are Bel’Export, Boussier/Belfrutex, Calsa/Weiss, DBS/DBS Agro, De Plecker-Lauwers, Demargro, Devos Group, Dries Sebrecht Fruit/DSF, Frans Michiels Belgium/FMB, Gemex, Herwi, Nicolaï Fruit, Pacbelimex, Vanco Belgium, Vergro and Wouters Fruithandel. You will find them at stand B05-B07 in hall 6.2.

Seven potato suppliers will also be there to meet their customers. The firms Bart’s Potato Company, Binst Breeding & Selection, Dauchy, De Aardappelhoeve, Pomuni, Potato Masters and Warnez can be found on stand B08.

Lastly, two fruit tree suppliers are also taking part: Carolus and Johan Nicolaï will be found alongside their Belgian colleagues on stand B08.

The fruit and vegetable stand will once again put on a product presentation and giant pictures of Flandria producers. The real eye-catchers are tomatoes, lettuce, peppers, cucumber, chicory and leek: our leading products. These pictures bring out Flandria’s three main themes: sustainable production, extra quality and family firms. By portraying and quoting actual producers, the campaign images are given credible and emotional substance.

Flandria: quality and service to the fore

Flandria is Europe’s most important vegetable brand. The label covers 60 sorts of vegetable, supplemented by 35 products in the ‘Specialty Street’ range. Thanks to its strict specifications, Belgium is able to supply a large volume of uniform high-quality products. Communication about the label started at its launch. The fact that this approach works is apparent from enquiries among German and French buyers by Teleresearch (D) and Tuillet (F) respectively in September 2013.

German buyers give high score to Belgian export companies

The results of a recent enquiry among German and French trade buyers confirm that Flandria is an established name in the European fruit and vegetable trade. With its name known to no less than 96%, it is clearly the best-known vegetable brand on the German market. What is more, Flandria is the preferred brand for German buyers. They associate the Flandria label above all with a wide range of vegetables, good quality, freshness, fast delivery, professionalism and experience. They are also very happy about relations with the Belgian export companies, and there are particularly high scores for guaranteed freshness and quality, short delivery times, proper pricing, and service.

Flandria is well anchored in the French trade

In France Flandria is known to 88% of the market. This is a good result when one considers that the two main French fruit and vegetable brands remain untouchable, as in previous years. All brands are losing ground to new labels on the French market. There is also a shift in buying criteria. For 57%, freshness is the most important buying criterion, followed by taste, which is also gaining in importance. The newcomer in third place is price, followed by quality control and traceability. The image of Flandria in France has improved, with positive comments on quality, breadth of the range, professionalism and the service provided by the sector.

Belgian exports: Fresh vegetables

Every year Belgian market gardeners produce no less than 745,000 tons of vegetables for the fresh food market. One of the leading products is the tomato, at least 230,000 tons of which are produced. Belgium is also known for its fresh leeks, with a supply of 130,000 tons. In addition, a total of almost 58,000 tons of lettuce (various varieties) were produced, and 40,000 tons of chicory, 25,000 tons of peppers and at least 20,000 tons of cucumbers.

In 2012 the French market purchased 35% of Belgium’s vegetables, the Dutch market 21% and, in third place, Germany at almost 20%. So it is clear that these three neighbouring countries account for the bulk (76%) of Belgian vegetable exports to the EU 28. These leaders are followed by Russia, with a 5% share of world exports, the United Kingdom (4%) and the Czech Republic (3%).

Belgian exports: Potatoes and potato products

In 2012 Belgian potato growers produced almost 3 million tons. The Netherlands is by far the largest buyer of fresh Belgian potatoes, taking a 67% share, followed at a distance by France (18.5%) and the United Kingdom (7.3%). Only a limited amount goes to non-EU countries (1.3%).

Belgian potato products are also a powerful force in this sector. Belgium exports almost 2 million tons, again more than the previous year. Here too the neighbouring EU countries are the biggest buyers; France takes 22%, the Netherlands almost 20% and the United Kingdom 12.6%. Furthermore, Belgian potato products are becoming increasingly popular in non-EU countries, which in 2012 took at least 20% of the exports.

Belgian exports: Fresh fruit

Almost 457,000 tons of fresh fruit, more specifically hard fruit (apples and pears), was produced in Belgium in 2012. Production of strawberries reached about 40,500 tons. The three main destinations for apples are the Netherlands (28%), France (22%) and Germany (17.5%). Russia also imports a lot of Belgian apples (13%).

When it comes to pears, Russia is right out in the lead, importing at least 42% of all Belgian pears. Our neighbouring countries follow a long way behind: the Netherlands (15%), the United Kingdom (almost 10%) and France (8.3%).

In 2012 Belgian strawberries went mostly to France (almost 19%), the United Kingdom (14.3%) and the Netherlands (13.4%). The Scandinavian countries also love Belgian strawberries: Sweden and Norway each take almost 11% of the volume. Russia is here again in the top 10 most important importers (5.7%).

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