For the first time, the International Asparagus Days (IAD) will take place as part of Macfrut, the international trade fair for the fruit and vegetable sector, to be held from 7 to 9 September 2021 at the Rimini Expo Centre. During the IAD, the focus will be on the asparagus supply chain, with conferences, field demonstrations and technical visits to companies. It will be one of the dynamic areas at the trade fair, coordinated by Luciano Trentini with technical and scientific support from Christian Befve, one of the world’s leading experts in the asparagus supply chain.
The global asparagus market
Globally, market prospects for asparagus are promising. After a period of overproduction in the 2000s due to the fact that the target of 300,000 hectares cultivated was exceeded, the cultivated area has decreased and is now about 215,000 hectares. However, it is not sufficient to meet global demand for white and green asparagus. Projections suggest that an area of between 270,000 and 280,000 hectares would be needed to meet global asparagus demand.
The world’s largest producer is China, with an area of 93,000 hectares, followed by Mexico (29,000) and Peru (22,000).
Asparagus growing in Italy
In Italy, asparagus is grown on an area of about 9,500 hectares, and most of it is produced in Apulia (about 50% of the total), followed by Veneto (21%) and Emilia-Romagna (about 8%).
In terms of sales, this crop is maintaining a positive trend as consumer demand for all types of asparagus – green, white and purple – is increasing. The demand for green asparagus for foreign markets is also on the rise, in particular organic varieties.
The fact that bars, restaurants and canteens had to close in 2020 due to the pandemic has led to a decrease in the consumption of not only fresh asparagus but also preserved and frozen asparagus. Large-scale retail marketing and exports alone have allowed sales to remain almost the same.
IAD at Macfrut 2021
During Macfrut, in the dynamic area of International Asparagus Day, all aspects of the supply chain will be examined: from new varieties to nursery production, from preparing the land for planting to looking after asparagus beds, and from harvesting asparagus (white and green) to processing produce in an environmentally friendly way in order to guarantee high-quality products for end consumers.
Two days (7-8 September) will be dedicated to conferences and round tables, focusing on key topics such as varietal choices in Italy and Europe as well as on the importance of field trials when it comes to identifying the most suitable cultivars. On Thursday 9 September, technical field visits will take place.