Cesena April 2022) – The fruit and vegetable supply chain will come together at Macfrut, the international trade fair for the fruit and vegetable sector. This event continues to thrive with the same numbers as last year – the last edition was held in September, just eight months ago – and despite the fact that things are still very uncertain at the moment. It is an extraordinary result that rewards the “diversity” of this trade fair, whose strength lies in three assets: Business, Knowledge and Experience.
From 4 to 6 May 2022 at the Rimini Expo Centre, visitors will get the chance to get a first-hand look at the proposals of more than 800 exhibitors representing the entire supply chain (production, technologies, packaging, logistics and services), with nearly 25% of participants from abroad. As of today, more than 500 international buyers accredited in cooperation with Ice-Agenzia – Italian Trade Agency have confirmed their participation. On top of this, about 80 events are scheduled over the course of three days, along with technical field tests, which demonstrates that this trade fair is a catalyst for content: it is the result of a team effort that brings together companies, institutions and knowledge providers such as universities and research centres (in particular, Ismea – the Institute of Services for the Agricultural and Food Market).
This reflects the situation of an industry that ended 2021 with a record export of €5.5 billion (+6%) and a balance of trade of more than €1 billion (Source: Ice-Agenzia – Italian Trade Agency). Among Italian agri-food exports, fruit and vegetables come in second place, followed only by wine (€7.1 billion). Italian fruit and vegetables account for 25.5% of national agricultural production and are worth more than €15 billion, with approximately 300,000 agricultural businesses.
A host of novelties at Macfrut 2022
The trade fair will be structured to include separate areas with different content, which will be coordinated by teams of experts.
First of all, the International Cherry Symposium, a tribute to the symbolic fruit of this edition: cherries. It will be hosted on the first day of Macfrut and will bring together the world’s leading experts in the field of cherry growing (4 May), with discussions between key players in the industry (5 May), and two field tours during which participants will have the chance to visit major cherry producers (in the Cesena area and in Vignola). The Symposium will be preceded by the International Spring School, a unique event organised by the University of Bologna, the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia and the Marche Polytechnic University, to be held on 2 and 3 May at the University Residential Centre of Bertinoro.
The trade fair will also host the first exhibition in Europe dedicated to spices, officinal herbs and aromatic herbs: the Spices & Herbs Global Expo, Macfrut’s latest addition, which will be making its debut with more than 50 exhibitors representing the entire supply chain, from in-field produce to dried and processed products. This area will feature an extensive programme of events, meetings, show cooking sessions and aromatic aperitifs. It will all revolve around an extremely dynamic sector, i.e. the global spice market, which is worth between $18-20 billion, with an estimated annual growth rate of approximately 4-5%. The production of spices has also been growing steadily: in fact, over
the last few years, it has exceeded 13 million tonnes. This exhibition is organised in collaboration with Cannamela, Fippo (Italian Federation of Medicinal Plant Producers), and the Erboristeria Domani magazine, acting as a technical partner.
During the third edition of the Tropical Fruit Congress, which will take place on Friday 6 May, the spotlight will be on an exotic fruit, namely, avocado, providing an opportunity for discussion between professionals from all over the world. The congress will explore market and consumption trends, technologies and sales strategies, with the participation of experts, buyers and international producers, with a special focus on avocados. In fact, avocado consumption in Italy has gone up by 20%, as part of an overall trend in which the volume consumption of tropical fruit has increased by 45-50% between 2017 and 2020. The Tropical Fruit Congress is coordinated by Ncx Drahorad.
An exhibition area, technical roundtable discussions and awards for the most significant innovations: this is what the upcoming Biosolutions International Event, the international exhibition dedicated to natural plant protection, plant nutrition and biostimulation products, has to offer. Agri2000 will be coordinating this area.
At Macfrut, the so-called Macfrut Field Solution will feature several dynamic areas. The halls of the exhibition centre will be hosting a 1,600-square-metre test field showcasing the main in-field technologies such as irrigation systems, covering systems and sensors applied to cherry growing. Acquacampus, the area dedicated to water saving, will be set up by CER (Canale Emiliano Romagnolo) in collaboration with ANBI (National Association of Land Reclamation).
There will also be an additional area, i.e. Smart Agriculture, set up in collaboration with Ri.Nova, where the latest 4.0 innovations, including drones, robots and in-field sensors will be on display.
Many foreign participants
Once again, despite these uncertain times, many foreign participants – even more than last year – are expected to attend, accounting for almost 25% of exhibitors. The exhibition areas of the following countries are particularly worthy of note: Uzbekistan, Indonesia, Vietnam, Bosnia, Turkey, Greece, Dominican Republic, Chile, Cuba and Venezuela, which will participate for the first time.
The African continent, which has always been very well represented at Macfrut, is worth a special mention, since many African countries will be present this year: Angola, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Senegal, Ghana, Mali, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Somalia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. One of this year’s novelties is the Africa Days programme, consisting of three days of events: the General State of Fruit and Vegetables, a focus session on Italian cooperation in agribusiness with the presentation of AICS projects in Africa, and events held by each participating African country. Africa Days will be hosted in collaboration with the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, AICS (Italian Agency for Development Cooperation), ICE-Agenzia – Italian Trade Agency and UNIDO (United Nations Industrial Development Organisation), in partnership with Confindustria Assafrica & Mediterraneo.
To conclude, the incoming programme for foreign buyers, organised in cooperation with ICE-Agenzia – Italian Trade Agency and through Macfrut’s network of foreign agents, is also confirmed, and more than 500 accredited buyers have already registered. These include a large number of importers and large-scale retailers from the Persian Gulf states and Eastern European countries.
Macfrut is organised by Cesena Fiera and will be held at the Rimini Expo Centre on 4-5-6 May 2022, from 9.30 a.m. to 6 p.m.