Florette has grown by more than 30% over the past three years

Innovation and sustainability are the key levers behind the growth of the Spanish leader

Fruit Today euromagazine interviewed Fermín Aldaz, the sales and marketing manager at Florette.

What is Florette’s market share in Spain?

Florette has a market share of 50% (internal data), thanks to the trust placed in us by consumers, who value the quality of our fresh, tasty and healthy produce.

A brand new centre for raw materials was opened just a year ago. What has this meant in terms of efficiency and volumes?

With the commissioning of this innovation centre, fitted with state-of-the-art technology, Florette continues to be a reference in innovation for new raw materials that in the future could form part of the Spanish diet, as has happened, for example, with the launching of sorrel or red lamb’s lettuce.

All this technological innovation that we have applied allows us to carry out an exhaustive monitoring of the development of each vegetable, respecting its natural growth rate and, at the same time, saving and optimising natural resources such as water.

What is Florette’s forecast for the evolution of the pre-prepared and convenience food range for the immediate future on the Spanish market?

There is no question that consumers’ shopping baskets will continue to incorporate pre-prepared and convenience food products, and we can see this reflected in the growth data for the category.

We are living at a time where it is precisely time that we don’t have, but we don’t want to give up a healthy diet. Therefore, at Florette we have evolved from salads with the simplest mixtures to the wide range of raw materials and formats available today, such as the First Sprouts, Complete Salads or recipes for microwave cooking.

In general figures, what has Florette’s evolution been over the past 3 years?

In the case of Florette, the trend has been very positive, growing even above the market with an evolution of 31.5% (Nielsen) since 2016.

When will the giant leap towards prepared fruit be taken? Why is this such a difficult task on the Spanish market?

It is a reality that our country has not yet reached European consumption levels regarding prepared fruit. Spain also “fails” in consumption of fruit and vegetables, since only 11% (5 al Día) of the adult population eats the recommended five portions. Therefore, at Florette, we are opting for this segment to promote shopping spaces for this type of healthy options for snacking between meals (for example, in supermarkets or vending machines). And the fact is that 40% (Freshplaza) of Spaniards admit that they would eat more fruit if they could find it already cut up in supermarkets.

Could other segments such as fruit salads, fruit in syrup, microwavable products, aromatic plants or Chinese vegetables be developed more?

Innovation is the key lever for Florette’s growth and, currently, the segment of microwavable products has just been launched. This includes healthy options ready for steaming in 5 minutes in the microwave, with fresh vegetables and different ingredients to make up a complete recipe (rice or pasta). At Florette, we predict that over the next 5 years this segment will come to mean 60% of our invoicing.

What are the company’s most immediate challenges, for example, the issue of plastic?

In the first place, it is paramount for us to continue innovating and to continue leading and boosting the pre-prepared and convenience food sector.

Furthermore, Florette is concerned about the environment, and packaging, which is part of our conservation technology, forms part of our commitment to sustainability. Today, there is no substitute for this packaging that guarantees food safety. However, we are fully engaged in a strategic plastic reduction plan, covering all areas and our entire portfolio. The plan is based on three concepts for sustainable management: recycling, reducing and eco-innovating.

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