43,000 visitors at Macfrut

Rimini (11 May 2018) – It had all the elements to be a great event, and expectations were fully met. An extraordinary 35th edition of Macfrut, which attracted 43,000 visitors during the three-day trade fair (compared to 39,000 last year), has come to an end. This achievement was a long time in the making, since a turning point was made in 2015 by relocating it to Rimini, and was consolidated this year with a strong growth at international level: 25% of participants were foreign and came from all over the world.
The Tropical Fruit Congress, which gathered the world elite of the mango and avocado supply chains, was particularly successful, with the participation of 300 professionals, 80% of whom were from abroad. In light of the success of this first edition, it is likely that the initiative will be repeated.
As Renzo Piraccini, president of Macfrut, stated, ‘This year we had the great opportunity to host a national trade fair that generates business not only during this three-day event but also throughout the year. I would like to thank all the players in the supply chain: this year’s excellent achievement is the result of a team effort between industry organisations.’
Both Italian and international exhibitors were also satisfied with the organisation of the trade fair and of the Tropical Fruit Congress, and with the opportunities offered for international relations.
‘We have a long-standing history with Macfrut and, now that the 35th edition has come to an end, we must say that we are very satisfied,’ said Carlo Lingua, Managing Director of RK Growers, a leading company in the research, selection and production of new fruit varieties. ‘This trade fair is particularly important and useful for our business, since we made some good contacts who were interested in our latest projects. And, last but not least, we were really pleased to have greater media visibility.’
According to Ilaria Turatti of Turatti Group, a company from the Veneto region specialising in fruit processing machinery, it was an excellent edition of Macfrut, with a greater number of international participants: ‘This year we had more contacts with foreign countries. In particular, at the trade fair we introduced our mango peeling machine, our latest product, which was met with great interest. The Tropical Fruit Congress was certainly an attractive event and we hope it will be repeated next year, but perhaps focusing on other tropical fruits. It is a great idea, which we will continue to support.’ 
‘I found that the trade fair has grown compared to previous years, with a greater variety of visitors than last year, which now no longer include just usual customers or distributors who come to visit us every year, also taking advantage of the fact that our company is located close to the exhibition centre,’ said Massimo Bellotti, International Sales Manager at Nespak. ‘My feedback is very positive, also with regard to the organisation of the Tropical Fruit Congress. In fact, we were really excited about participating in the Congress as a sponsor. It definitely attracted many more decision makers interested not only in traditional fruits but also in the ones that are now increasingly found in supermarkets. We saw it during the Congress: the numbers speak for themselves, but although Italy still has a long way to go compared to the UK, France or Germany, there is still plenty of room for growth. I also believe that the Tropical Fruit Congress will encourage producers in Southern Italy to grow avocados and will spur the demand for this product.’
According to Adriana Senior Mojica, president of CCI Colombia, Macfrut was a great opportunity for Colombia, this year’s Partner Country. ‘Thanks to this opportunity, Colombia was present as an exhibitor representing 25 companies that produce mangoes, avocados, bananas, lemons and many other fruits that are of great interest to Italy and other countries. At Macfrut 2018, we managed to attract new customers not only from Europe but also from Asia (China), Abu Dhabi and Korea. We also established relationships with companies that sell machinery and can therefore allow us to optimise our production process. From an organisational point of view, we can only be grateful to the Emilia-Romagna region for its hospitality and for the accommodation provided and all the services offered, the delicious food that we enjoyed and for the logistical support offered by the trade fair.’
Moreover, great enthusiasm was expressed by the delegation from Uzbekistan, represented by Ulugbek Bekchanov, delegate of the Representative office of Development Alternatives. ‘This was our second year in a row at Macfrut, since we had attended last year’s edition but only as visitors. This year we decided to set up a collective stand so that three companies could exhibit their products, namely fresh and dried fruits. This year’s edition seemed really interesting and turned out to be a success, so much so that were constantly busy during all three days. Professionals from all over the world, especially from Eastern European countries such as Ukraine and Croatia, but also from Italy, Asia, the states of the Persian Gulf and our historical customers from Russia showed interest in our products. Therefore, it was a very fruitful trade fair for us, certainly the best one this year.’
Abdalrhaman M.A. Ali, General Manager of the Sudanese Center for Sterilization Horticultural Exports, described his long-standing experience at Macfrut. ‘We have been exhibitors at Macfrut practically every year, but the Tropical Fruit Congress dedicated to mangoes and avocados certainly set this edition apart from the others. This event gave us the chance to meet experts who advised us on mangoes, and we made some valuable and useful contacts. The trade fair was also instrumental in strengthening relations with our other business contacts, whom we met for the fourth time this year and, generally speaking, it was an extremely positive experience for us in terms of visibility and promotion.’
The next edition of Macfrut will be held from 8 to 10 May 2019 at the Rimini Expo Centre.