Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa focuses on the Portuguese industry’s quality and innovation

Around 60 Spanish companies take part in Portugal’s leading sector trade fair

Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa focuses on the Portuguese industry’s quality and innovation

The 3-day exhibition will showcase the best of Portugal’s food production, the most innovative catering solutions and cutting-edge developments in food industry technology and equipment. All this will be on the menu at the forthcoming Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa, set to take place in Portugal’s capital from 4 – 6 June this year, organised by the Fira de Barcelona company Alimentaria Exhibitions and by Feira Internacional de Lisboa.

The aim of this year’s Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa is to highlight and showcase the excellent quality of Portuguese food and the competitiveness of its agri-food industry. The show has become Portugal’s leading exhibition in this sector.


This year’s event has also attracted major international participation. With around 300 companies attending from France, Italy, Portugal, Poland, Peru, Belgium, Holland and Spain, which will be represented by over 60 firms from 15 Autonomous Communities, 29% of the companies are from outside Portugal.


Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa will have a fresh focus this year, based on innovation, food trends and highlighting the excellent quality of local Portuguese products. ‘We need to promote the competitiveness of Portugal’s economy, its export capacity and the fact that it has opened up to new non-traditional markets, to contribute to encouraging healthy lifestyles and to spotlight this key moment for the foodservice sector in Portugal’, says Mar Santarrufina, the event’s Director for Alimentaria Exhibitions.


Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa will thus incorporate some important new developments and its offerings will include the new consumption patterns and consumer profiles such as organic and functioning foods and fine foods, among other categories.


The show aims to encourage trade and promote Portuguese production, with a wide array of products showcased in three different halls: Alimentaria, where the huge variety of food and beverage industry products will be on display; Horexpo, the HoReCa channel’s most emblematic event in Portugal; and Tecnoalimentaria, which will host a full range of technology and equipment for the food industry and distribution sector.


More business, new markets

In order to attract the sector’s most highly qualified professionals, Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa works together with major multiples to facilitate attendance by Portugal’s major distributors together with small specialist outlets and retailers that are well-established in the country and some of the major international distribution and retail brands.


‘The show aims to become established as a strategic partner so that the participating companies, mainly SMEs, can gain a foothold in the Portuguese market, discover real business opportunities and enter the international markets for the first time’, Ms. Santarrufina affirms. The Hosted Buyers programme will therefore be inviting some 50 buyers from major multiples, wholesalers, specialist outlets and retailers from the European Union, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Tunisia, Morocco, the USA, Canada, India, Brazil, Peru and Mexico, who will be looking to make business contacts through scheduled interviews with the exhibitors that most interest them.


It is a notable fact that Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa’s area of influence is a market with over 220 million consumers from the Portuguese-speaking countries: Portugal, Brazil, Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, São Tomé and Príncipe and East Timor, positioning the show as an exceptional springboard for international business.


Keen to innovate

Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa aspires to be a trend barometer, giving impetus to new products that will soon be in the shops. Tecnoalimentaria will also bring together an array of innovations, with the latest developments in machinery and equipment for food and beverage manufacturing and processing.


Portugal has always been fertile ground for innovation. The industry’s large companies are aware of this fact and have always known how to make the most of the open, receptive character of Portuguese consumers to test and launch new products. In fact, a study by UBS ranks Portugal as the 23rd best-prepared world economy, of a group of 45 countries, for adopting Industry 4.0, its innovation capacity being one of its strong points. According to the company Nielsen, most Portuguese would be willing to pay higher prices for products with new functions or premium quality.


The power of the HoReCa channel

The hospitality and catering business is well-established in Portugal and is on the crest of the wave today, breaking records with its impressive growth. The Portuguese devote more than 15% of their household budget to food and drink and spend almost 10% on hotels, restaurants, cafés and similar establishments, according to government data.


Food is one of the country’s top industries, and Portuguese cuisine is internationally acclaimed for the high quality of its ingredients and the creativity of its top chefs. Tourism has also grown by 20% in Portugal in the last two years, much higher than the average for the world as a whole and southern Europe. In the last year alone, over 16 million foreign tourists visited the country and spent 7 billion euros.


This means that Portugal’s cuisine is the main ambassador of the country’s food industry and a major motivation for tourism. Alimentaria & Horexpo Lisboa has therefore scheduled activities such as Chef of the Year, the Most Portuguese Hotel in the World or a Catering Congress that will bring together sector professionals to debate the challenges faced by this sector in Portugal. The Associação da Hotalaria, Restauração e Similares de Portugal (AHRESP) will contribute to these activities, aiming to reach the entire Portuguese hotel, catering and foodservice channel and help Horexpo attract the largest possible number of profiles linked to the HoReCa channel, restaurants, holiday resorts, the hotel sector and general and group catering enterprises.


The show will also be backed by the country’s main industry associations and organisations and by the ministries of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of the Economy.

Susana Santamaria |