The next edition of Expoliva, the most important fair in the olive oil sector of the world, is already heating engines … of its main novelties and bets, we speak from ECA with Ángel Vera Sandoval, President of the Board of Directors of Ferias Jaén S.A. (IFEJA), which highlights the exponential growth in participation and visitors that year after year has been experiencing Expoliva, which for the eleventh consecutive time has been recognized as an international fair, the only one in Andalusia.
E-Commerce Agrarian: what news is presented in this edition Expoliva?
Ángel Vera Sandoval: the main novelty of this edition is that we will have the participation of the 57 olive oil producing countries of the world. It is an event never given to date and that positions the province of Jaén as strategic center and international neuralgic sector.
Another important news is marked by the increase in the number of exhibitors. The demand has been such that from the organization we have had to enable new exhibition spaces, additional to those that have already been raised in previous editions of Expoliva. Thus, we have proposed a new tent located in one of the main entrances of the Campus and that has allowed to accommodate 39 new exhibitors that otherwise, would not have been possible to host. Even so, and from here to the beginning of the fair, we will try, as far as possible, to locate all companies that are still on the waiting list, so that all interested parties can show their products and services in Expoliva.
ECA: what is the leit motiv of this year?
A.V.S: Expoliva is the most important fair in the sector of how many are celebrated in the world and of course, in Andalusia and not only for what it means from the point of view of the business generated at the fair, but also because of the strategic Province of Jaén as a world olive oil reference. In this sense, the ultimate goal for us is to continue contributing to the consolidation and projection of Expoliva, as the best and most important event of the sector in the international arena. For this, and with scarcely more than a month for its beginning, we continue working and trying to polish to the maximum all the details and organization of the event, to be able to surpass us. In addition, the support and support for the candidature of the Landscapes of the Olive Grove in Andalusia to Andalusian World Heritage, already started in 2015, will continue also in this edition.
ECA: what have been the main milestones / achievements in the evolution of this fair?
A.V.S.: without a doubt, the greatest achievement comes from the hand of the exponential growth that we get edition after edition in every sense: exhibitors, brands and visitors. When we think that we have already reached the ceiling, a new edition of Expoliva arrives and considerably increases the figures of the previous edition, which already are truly spectacular.
Ángel Vera: “Expoliva 2015 was developed with record numbers in all its editions: 280 exhibitors, more than 31 thousand meters occupied and a massive influx of visitors that reached 48,890”
As for the networking and commercial missions of olive oil, machinery and technology transfer, we also note that a total of 520 meetings were held between buyers and sellers. Purchasing companies came from 12 different countries and 63 companies from Jaen participated.
The Scientific-Technical Symposium, which had 210 papers and 1,335 participants, was the perfect complement to the trade fair and helped create a unique and specific character that has allowed Expoliva to continue for 17 editions. Finally, the Expoliva Extra Virgin Salon brought together 130 of the best extra virgin olive oils in the world.
ECA: What are the objectives and challenges facing Expoliva 2017?
A.V.S: in addition to consolidating the numbers of the previous edition and working on all aspects that contribute to the generation of business, from Expoliva we consider that we must work in two complementary lines and at the moment are highly valued, such as olive oil Linked with health and gastronomy. Olive oil is one of the most potent health-related assets. There are numerous studies that certify the benefits derived from consumption in prevention of breast cancer, cardiovascular diseases, Alzheimer’s prevention …, among others. In addition, AOVE is an essential element in the Mediterranean Diet due to both organoleptic properties and their health benefits. It has a high content of antioxidants and many other healthy virtues, so another outstanding aspect in Expoliva 2017 will be the enhancement of olive oil in gastronomy.
ECA: what are your most important strategic lines? Do you notice any new bets in this edition?
A.V.S.: the strategic lines of Expoliva 2017 will include the boost to R & D & I and marketing; Promotion of the economy of the olive sector, in order to encourage trade between the exhibitor and the consumer; the promotion of new business opportunities related to the sustainable management of olive farms; and professionalization, promotion and concentration of the sector. Without forgetting the determined impulse and support that began in 2015 to the candidacy of Landscapes of the Olivar in Andalusia to World Heritage, an initiative developed jointly by the Diputación de Jaén and the Andalusian Government.
ECA: what crucial aspects for the sector will be addressed in Expoliva 2017?
A.V.S: Expoliva 2017 will mark an important turning point due to the great diversity of topics of interest to the producing sector and related industries that will be addressed in the sample: reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), olive oil and health, the price of oil, the use of the by-products of the olive grove, the commitment to quality, the internationalization and export of the product, the environmental aspects of the olive grove, the use of olive oil in gastronomy …
ECA: this year Expoliva has achieved official recognition as International Fair, what would highlight the bet of this fair for internationalization? What are the main developments regarding Expoliva 2017?
A.V.S.: The province of Jaén is the only one in Andalusia that has an international fair. It should be noted that there are few trade fair events to which they are granted full internationality, which must be backed by the international presence both in companies and visitors, as is the case of our fair. For this reason, from Expoliva, we are working to provide a greater international presence to the sample, both in the exhibition area, in the number of participating countries, the number of foreign professional visitors, and in the increase of international buyers who visit the fair and that will have a very positive impact on the increase of commercial transactions and business for the companies.
“Expoliva has achieved internationality for the eleventh consecutive edition, which makes this fair the most important of which are celebrated in Spain with this theme”
A.V.S.: we are working so that in the next edition of Expoliva, which will take place from 10th to 13th May, we can count on representation of the 57 countries producing olive oil in the world. Thus, countries of the five continents, from Austria, Japan, China, the United Kingdom, through Arabia, USA, Chile or Argentina, have already confirmed their participation in the fair. To respond and cover this important number of producing countries, Expoliva is preparing a program of professional visitors in which we will be able to make a visit as it will include from a series of protocol attentions to reception, meetings with authorities, guided tours, conferences on the global environment of olive oil, logistical support, B2B meetings … In addition, from a merely expositive point of view, commercial actions are increasing in order to achieve an increase both in the number of countries present and in the number of exhibitors at the trade fair, although it is still early to give definitive data of international participation.
ECA: How has the international presence in this event been growing, edition after edition?
A.V.S.: we have gone from an almost symbolic representation, from the international point of view in the first editions to obtain in the last edition of Expoliva the visit of 3,300 international professionals from 40 countries, and the participation of 31 companies from 10 different countries.
ECA: Do Ibero-American countries constitute a market of interest? To what extent has Latin America been represented at this fair? What will be your presence in Expoliva 2017?
A.V.S.: the largest international fair in the sector, could not leave aside Latin America, since it is true that it is an emerging market, both from the point of view of producers and consumers. As of today we can confirm the celebration of three commercial missions, which will complete the commercial exhibition area and will contribute to generate business, the ultimate objective of this important event, and which will include Ibero-American countries such as Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay , Brazil…