in Barcelona and Catalonia
Barcelona City Council Government of
Economic Promotion Catalonia
Invest in Catalonia
Economic Promotion is the department With headquarters in Barcelona and 35
of Barcelona City Council dedicated to overseas offices, ACC1Ó CIDEM/COPCA,
promoting Barcelona as an attractive through Invest in Catalonia, provides
place to do business and to supporting advisory services and assistance
companies, professionals and institu- adapted to the needs of companies
tions interested in setting up and doing interested in setting up or expanding
business in the city. their operations and investments in
22@Barcelona is one of the
strategic projects of the city of
Barcelona. In the centrally located
district of Poblenou, land has been
set aside so that companies and Barcelona Chamber of
institutions working in the media, Commerce
information and communication
technologies (ICTs), medical techno- www.cambrabcn.es
logies, energy and design can interact The Barcelona Chamber of Commerce
with knowledge centres such as is the institution that represents
universities and R&D centres. companies in the city of Barcelona.
Through its individualized services for
companies and its actions, it promotes
its member companies and business
Barcelona and Catalonia 06
Catalonia and its capital, Barcelona, have always been known for welcoming
visitors. Throughout history, many different peoples have passed through this
10 Reasons to Invest 08
region and a good number of them have stayed. This has made Catalonia a
hospitable, tolerant and dynamic place that is open to all things new.
The Agri-food Industry in Barcelona
Catalonia and Barcelona have become a major economic hub of Europe. As a and Catalonia 10
driver of the Spanish economy, 21st-century Catalonia is an innovative region
with highly qualified labour, an enviable geographic location (in the centre of 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry
Europe and connected to the rest of the world through its Mediterranean port in Barcelona and Catalonia
and international airports) and first-rate infrastructure, which is why it
continues to attract major international investment year after year. 01. A very important agri-food industry 12
It is a pleasure for us to present this economic dossier, which describes the
02. A benchmark European cluster 16
characteristics of the agri-food industry, one of the primary economic sectors 03. A privileged geo-strategic location 17
in Catalonia and Barcelona in terms of its weight in the economy, its relative 04. The presence of leading companies 18
weight in comparison to other European regions, and the attention it receives
from companies, universities and research centres. This dossier is the result of
05. Leadership in fresh products 20
the collaboration of four leading institutions in the economy of the city of 06. Barcelona Food Platform 22
Barcelona and Catalonia and provides a glimpse of what Catalonia has to offer 07. A focus on research and development 23
your company as a leading enterprising region in this industry.
08. Alimentaria International Food and Beverage Exhibition 24
We look forward to providing advice and helping you with your investment
09. Network of municipal markets 26
10. Barcelona and the Mediterranean diet 28
Websites of Interest 30
04 Presentation The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 05
Barcelona and Catalonia
Barcelona, is in Northeastern Spain on the The basis for economic growth (which has become very important in recent years) can
shores of the Mediterranean. It ranks among be found in a metropolis with a polycentric and economically diversified business structure
the largest metropolitan regions in Europe and that facilitates its role as a generator of new ideas, companies and products.
is the centre of an extensive metropolitan area Bearing in mind the distribution of gross added value in different areas of activity,
made up of more than 217 towns and cities Catalonia accounts for the highest percentage of industrial activity of all Spain’s
with a total population of 4.6 million. It is the autonomous communities (23%), and is ranked second in terms of gross added value
economic, cultural and administrative capital of generated in the services industry (15.7% of the total).
Catalonia and the leader of an emerging area of
Moreover, Catalonia’s rate of entrepreneurial activity in 2007 was 8.4%, which was
economic activity in Southern Europe with higher than the Spanish and European averages according to the Global Entrepreneurship
17 million inhabitants and more than 800,000 Monitor (GEM) 2007.
companies. This Euro-Mediterranean region,
International business activity in the Barcelona area receives special promotional attention
which includes the Balearic Islands, Valencia,
from the Fira trade fair centre, the Port of Barcelona, the airport, the Zona Franca
Aragon and Southeastern France, is focusing on
Consortium, the Barcelona Tourism Consortium and the new technological innovation
new strategic, competitive and international
districts. The close ties between the logistics infrastructure and the considerable business
sectors, and is consolidating its position as one
activity of the agri-food industry give the city a privileged geo-strategic position in
of the main European conglomerations of Europe.
Barcelona and its metropolitan area attract major agri-food companies, which represent
one of the pillars of the Catalan economy and occupy a leading position in Spain. Catalonia
is a benchmark in the food industry for many reasons. In terms of economics, its
advantages include the many important international companies operating in the area
that sell packaged and fresh products, the considerable agri-food community, with large
specific clusters such as the cava and wine cluster, the geo-strategic location, and the
availability of first-class logistics infrastructure, research centres and prestigious
international trade shows. Moreover, Catalonia is internationally renowned for its
gastronomic culture, which is based on health and quality, as reflected by the
Mediterranean diet and the many restaurants that are famous for exquisite dining.
In terms of the availability of human resources, Barcelona is known for its prestigious
universities, acclaimed research centres, R&D laboratories and intermediary institutions
that facilitate the development of innovative projects that drive new initiatives in the
agri-food industry through knowledge transfer.
06 Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 07
10 Reasons to Invest
There are many reasons why Barcelona is such an
attractive place to live, work and do business. The city
is currently in an excellent position for new business
activities. Here are just some of the good reasons for
investing in the city:
01 Strategic geographic location 06 Human resources prepared for the future
France is two hours away by road. As the southern gateway to Europe, the city’s port, airport, A high level of preparation, high productivity (one of the highest in Europe according to the OECD); 5 public
duty-free zone, logistics park and international trade fair centre are all within a five-kilometre universities, 3 private universities, renowned business schools (IESE, ESADE, EADA); 27 international schools;
radius of the city centre. considerable use of new technologies; a character inclined towards innovation and creativity.
02 Complete transport infrastructure 07 Excellent quality of life
Motorway network connected with Europe; the airport with the fastest growth in Europe; the leading Ranked first in Europe in terms of quality of life*. A stable climate, sun, beaches, first-class ski resorts
Spanish port and the largest container port on the Mediterranean; a comprehensive metro, rail and nearby, availability of excellent cultural and leisure activities; a network of 4500 educational institutions;
bus network; the high-speed train connection between Barcelona and Madrid became operative a modern, accessible healthcare system; easy accessibility and mobility on public transport; a park system
in 2008 and the link from Barcelona to the French border is expected to provide service by 2011. that surrounds the city.
03 The centre of a large, dynamic and diverse economic area 08 Major urban-planning projects for the future
The population of the greater Barcelona area is 4.6 million. It is the capital of Catalonia (more Transformation of 1000 hectares and 7 million m2 of construction. The Llobregat area is focusing on logistics
than 7 million inhabitants) and the centre of the Mediterranean Arc, a very large economic area and internationalization, with the expansion of the port and airport; the Besòs area is focusing on urban
with 17 million inhabitants. It accounts for 70% of Catalonia’s GDP showed an increase in its own
, renewal, sustainability and research centres; the Sagrera-Sant Andreu area will have its own high-speed
GDP in 2007 of 3.1% (above the European average) and is the sixth-largest urban conglomeration train station; 22@Barcelona is the new technology and innovation district.
in Europe and the fifth in terms of industry.
09 Competitive real estate
04 Successful foreign investment A wide selection of office space, commercial premises and industrial buildings with an excellent quality/price
Ranked the fifth-best city in Europe for doing business, Barcelona accounts for approximately ratio.
20% of foreign investment in Spain each year. A total of 2700 foreign companies have set up in
the city and 97% of them have expressed their satisfaction with the decision. Barcelona is also
consolidating its reputation as a location for the European division of many multinationals. 10 Unique public-private cooperation
Barcelona City Council and the Catalan government provide strong support to companies. Successful public-
05 Renowned international position private collaboration has been one of the keys to the transformation of Barcelona.
Barcelona occupies an outstanding position in different international rankings in terms of its urban
character, ability to attract foreign investment, entrepreneurial personality and quality of life.
* According to the European Cities Monitor 2008 by Cushman & Wakefield
08 10 Reasons to Invest The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 09
The Agri-food Industry in
Barcelona and Catalonia
The Catalan food industry Catalonia, and the Barcelona metropolitan area, has become a benchmark
occupies the leading region in the food and beverage industry or agri-food industry in recent
position in Spain and the years. The agri-food industry plays a key role in the Spanish economy
Barcelona area plays a key and is one of the most important industries.
role, given that a The importance of the food industry in the Catalan economy is clear
considerable amount of from the fact that the food, beverages and tobacco industry is the leading
food is produced here and branch of industry in terms of turnover and accounts for 15.7% of the
most of the research, total and nearly 3000 companies, many of which are located in the
innovation and investment Greater Barcelona Area. The industry also generates 78,100 direct jobs,
activity generated in the which represent 20.4% of the total number of people employed in the
industry takes place in the industry in Spain.
Agri-food Industry Turnover
Catalonia is therefore the
most important The aim of this document is to present the basic
autonomous community in current and future characteristics of the agri-food
the agri-food industry in industry in Catalonia and the city of Barcelona by
Spain, in that it accounts for pointing out 10 strategic reasons:
23% of total turnover and
nearly the same percentage 01 A very important agri-food industry
of operating income. 02 A benchmark European cluster
Catalonia also boasts a very 03 A privileged geo-strategic location
rich food and gastronomy 04 The presence of leading companies
culture, based on consumer Source: INE, 2007.
habits grounded in the 05 Leadership in fresh products
Mediterranean diet, quality Moreover, Barcelona’s weight and projection in the food industry is also
reflected by the city’s distribution facilities: Mercabarna, Barcelona’s
06 Barcelona Food Platform
supply and internationally
renowned restaurants. wholesale market, is estimated to supply 10 million people in the area 07 A focus on research and development
from Northeastern Spain to Northern Italy; the Alimentaria Food Exhibition
is ranked second among food trade fairs in Europe; and a great many
08 Alimentaria International Food and
universities and research centres work in the fields of nutrition and food
safety. 09 Network of municipal markets
Also important are consumer habits, especially gastronomy, an area in
which Barcelona, Catalonia and Spain have defined a new international
10 Barcelona and the Mediterranean diet
standard. In fact, the Mediterranean diet has become one of the building
blocks of the many fine-dining spots in Catalonia, along with the rich
culinary tradition and the consolidated prestige of the many great Catalan
chefs. All this has given Barcelona a reputation as a city of creative, quality
10 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 11
10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food
Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia
01 A Very Important
Catalonia has had a long tradition in the food industry, as reflected by the
considerable economic activity this industry generates as a percentage of
all industrial activity. The food industry is, in fact, one of the main drivers
of the Catalan economy.
The Catalan agri-food industry accounts for 15.7% (€17.14 billion)
of all net sales in Catalan industry, a figure which is comparable to
Of the 10 sectors the agri-food industries is divided into, meat processing is
those of the chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Catalonia is
the leader in total net sales.
the Spanish autonomous community with the most jobs in the
industry (78,100; 20.4% of the total), followed by Andalusia (13.3%)
and Valencia (8.1%).
Barcelona has very close ties with the agri-food industry: it boasts
10,000 jobs and 370 companies in the industry, which represent
10.8% of the Catalan companies in the industry and 15.8% of
employees. Four branches of the agri-food industry account for most
of these jobs.
The main branch is Other Food Products, which includes activities
Source: DAR, 2006. as diverse as making bread, biscuits and other pastry products; the
sugar, cocoa, chocolate and confectionery industry; pasta making; coffee and tea; spices,
sauces and condiments; and prepared dietary and baby food. This set of activities accounts
for 55.8% of jobs and 72.7% of companies in the sector.
The second agri-food branch with the most jobs is the beverage sector, which accounts
for 16.6% of jobs, but only 5.1% of companies, which makes it the second-most important
branch in the city in terms of company size (with 91 employees per company).
Finally, the dairy and meat industries are the two other branches that account for the
most jobs and companies in the Barcelona area.
In terms of exports, meat, wine, oil and other food products are the most items sold
abroad. The leading imports are milk and fish, fat and oil and other food products. Source: DAR, 2006.
12 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 13
1. Barcelona: a laboratory of ideas and
Innovation and New Trends. The identifier of new trends.
Greater Barcelona Area is home to a
Barcelona has become a key testing ground to chart
first-class food cluster that offers
new purchasing and consumer habits, and to identify
companies a wide range of oppor-
new trends in the food industry.
tunities in the identification and
adaptation to industry trends. Moreover, the presence of major trade fairs and
cultural activities related to the food industry, such
as the Alimentaria International Food and Beverage
Exhibition, have made Barcelona a laboratory for
generating and detecting new opportunities in the Catalonia and the Greater Barcelona Area
industry and a continuous generator of fresh new become a key location for the development of
ideas. research and innovation.
Barcelona therefore helps companies identify • Product innovation, especially in the
opportunities, and develop and test the wide range development of the 4th and 5th range.
of innovations created in the Barcelona area,
especially those related to: • Production-process innovation, especially in
techniques involving product processing,
• New consumer habits and the identification of manufacture and preservation.
new consumer segments.
• Adaptation to trends in logistics distribution
• New purchasing patterns. and related new technologies, such as smart
• The introduction and analysis of new products, packaging.
such as functional food and environmentally • Technological innovation.
friendly and organic products.
• Incorporation and innovation in
• The adaptation of new marketing channels, environmental matters and waste
such as the hotel and restaurant channel. management.
Also of note is Barcelona’s location near major
2. Innovation. logistics infrastructure, which give it considerable
Catalonia also boasts an extensive network of pioneering associations and organizations international projection.
in research, development and innovation which have created a first-rate environment for Catalonia, and especially the Greater Barcelona
knowledge and innovation, and help companies develop new products and services (IRTA, Area, has thus become a major catalyst and
Barcelona Food Platform, etc.). generator of business opportunities and R&D and
The Greater Barcelona Area is also home to major clusters that complement and contribute innovation in the food industry.
synergies in the food industry, such as those in information and communication technologies
(ICTs) and the biotech sector.
14 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 15
02 Benchmark European
Cluster 03 A Privileged Geo-strategic
Barcelona has a privileged Of special note is the Llobregat Delta platform, which is equipped with
The agri-food industry in The agri-food cluster in Catalonia occupies a leading position in Europe, geographic location, given assets that make it a first-class agri-food cluster. These assets include
the Barcelona area has according to data from the Observatory of European Clusters presented that all modes of transport the following infrastructure facilities:
become a benchmark in by the Stockholm School of Economics, which analyses more than 250 can be found so close to • The Zona Franca Industrial Estate (PZF), which is the largest piece of
Europe and the world: European regions.
one another (at a distance active industrial land in Spain with a gross area of 600 ha. More than
• It is home to a first-class Along with the Italian region of Lombardy, Catalonia has become one of of no more than 5 200 companies operate on this estate and turnover in 2006 amounted
agri-food cluster the main agri-food clusters in Europe in terms of the number of jobs kilometres): sea, air, rail and to €20 billion.
created and size, out of more than 150 food clusters analysed. road, as well as the
• It is a hub that attracts • Mercabarna, one of the main food clusters in Southwestern Europe.
infrastructure and land
international companies The Barcelona area agri-food cluster is also the leader, given that, in
necessary for the • Barcelona airport.
terms of jobs created, it is second only to the construction industry. It is
the largest agri-food cluster in Spain and the one that has created the development of large-scale • The Port of Barcelona and the Logistics Activity Area (ZAL), more than
most jobs. quality logistics activities. 830 ha. of which is devoted to the agri-food industry, with 6 specific
terminals. Cargo traffic (imports/exports) amounts to about 7.4 million
tonnes per year.
Finally, Catalonia has a considerable supply of agri-food warehouse
space, currently around 1,500,000 m2, of which approximately 60% is
(top 10 in Europe)
located in Barcelona Province, where there is an excellent supply of
Lombardy (Milan), IT cold logistics services.
Catalonia (Barcelona), ES
Brittany (Rennes), FR
Vlaams Gewest, BE Terminals dedicated to the agri-food industry in the Port of Barcelona:
Emilia-Romagna (Bologna), IT 1 ERGANSA - Terminal that receives bulk grain and seeds.
2 3 BUNGE IBÉRICA, SA and CARGIL ESPAÑA, SA - Terminals that mill soy beans.
Veneto (Venice), IT 4 TERMINAL PORT NOU, SA – Fruit terminal.
Pays de la Loire (Nantes), FR 5 INTERLOGÍSTICA DEL FRÍO, SA (INTERFRISA) - Refrigerated warehouse.
Masovia (Warsaw), PL 6 BIT S.A. - Coffee and cocoa terminal.
Andalusia (Seville), ES 5 2 1
The Llobregat Delta agri-food cluster is
supported by an intermodal system of 6
logistics and transport infrastructure:
• 7 km from the airport.
Moreover, the Barcelona area has become a major focus of foreign
investment, especially in industry and advanced services. Catalonia has • 500 m from the port.
thus consolidated its reputation as the main destination of foreign • 200 m from the main rail cargo station
companies, nearly 34% of which have their headquarters or main activity in Catalonia.
in the region. The Barcelona area is home to 90% of the companies that
have set up in Catalonia and close to 97% of those companies have • 7 km from the centre of Barcelona.
expressed a high level of satisfaction with the decision.
In the food industry, the dynamic, attractive profile of Catalonia is reflected
by the fact that almost 11% of the foreign investment in Catalonia is in Road network FGC commuter rail network Logistics Activities Zone (ZAL) Zona Franca customs Port of Barcelona
RENFE rail network Cargo network Zona Franca Logistics Park Barcelona air cargo Barcelona Airport
the agri-food industry, right behind the automotive industry, with 13%. centre
16 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 17
04 The Presence
of Leading Companies
Catalonia is an industrial benchmark in the food industry, especially in
the Barcelona area, as a result of the presence of international
companies that are the leaders in their sectors and due to the Catalonia: Four Leading Food
existence of four key clusters. Complementary industries have also
developed, such as those related to packaging, logistics, and cold • Meat Industries: Cluster made up of more
storage, etc. than 200 companies with 8,300 employees.
• Mineral Water: Cluster made up of 11
There are nearly 3,000 companies working in the agri- establishments dedicated to mineral water,
food industry in Catalonia, which is ranked first in Spain with more than 600 jobs and an annual
in terms of the number of large companies, with close turnover of €400 million.
to 700. Most of this industry and the employment it
• Wine and Cava: This cluster is made up of
generates is located in Barcelona Province, which has
more than 200 companies employing 2,500
become a strategic area for any major agri-food
people and invoicing €575 million per year.
• Olive Oil: This cluster is made up of 130
A number of leading companies in the agri-food
establishments that employ nearly 900
industry have thus set up in Catalonia and especially
people and have a joint annual turnover of
in the Barcelona metropolitan area, as well as many
companies that are the world leaders in their
Examples include Nestlé, Danone, Agroaliment,
Source: DAR Panrico, Borges, Bimbo, Coca-Cola, Damm, Freixenet,
Codorniu, Cargill Spain, Corporació Alimentària de Guissona and Bacardi.
At the same time, the presence of such important companies has generated a high
level of specialization and qualifications of the professionals in the industry, which offers
first-class human resources and knowledge.
Headquarters of the AECOC – GS1 Spain
The main association of manufacturers and distributors in Spain (AECOC), with
close to 24,000 associates, has its headquarters in Barcelona. The AECOC was
originally created to promote the use of barcodes, but has developed to offer
the industry and distribution a framework for cooperation that is essential to
be able to reach consumers as efficiently as possible by identifying opportunities
for improvement all along the supply chain.
AECOC is also a member and representative of the GS1 organization in Spain.
The aim of GS1 is to define standards and good practices in the supply chain.
18 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 19
in Fresh Products Mercabarna’s most immediate area of influence extends 100 km beyond Barcelona
and covers all of Catalonia, the northern section of Valencia, an area in Western
Aragon, the Balearic Islands, Andorra, Southern France and Northern Italy. It supplies
a total of nearly 10 million consumers with fresh products.
Mercabarna is a first-rate food unit and has become one of the main food
clusters in Southwestern Europe for fresh products. It also handles
marketing, preparation and generation of added value for food, logistics,
distribution, importing and exporting, as well as the supply of
infrastructure and technological services, waste-management policies and
respect for the environment.
Located on the Zona Franca Industrial Estate, Mercabarna is home to more than 800
companies, of which 350 are commercial concerns (wholesale buying and selling) and
450 work in other activities in the food industry (product processing and handling,
restaurant services, warehousing, logistics and distribution, etc.). Overall, Mercabarna
generates €2.5 billion in turnover each year, employs 8,000 people and is visited by
25,000 people a day.
Mercabarna also forms part of MERCASA, the network of 23 wholesale markets distributed
throughout Spain that account for an area of more than 7 million square meters dedicated
to the agri-food industry, where more than 3,500 wholesale companies work.
Mercabarna covers an area of 90 hectares divided into four sectors:
• Fruit and vegetables, with a Central Fruit and Vegetable Market.
• Fish, with a Central Fish Market.
• Meat, with a slaughterhouse.
• Flowers and plants, with a Central Flower and Plant Market (currently on premises
The following figure shows the map
in the towns of Sant Boi de Llobregat and El Prat de Llobregat).
of Mercabarna with the different
One of the factors that make Mercabarna stand out from sectors and activities carried out
other markets in the world is the considerable development there.
of the Complementary Activities Area (ZAC), where activities
The modification of the General Metropolitan
are carried out that give added value to fresh products
Plan (PGM) should make it possible to expand
(handling, cutting, cleaning, etc.) and that provide services
Mercabarna in the future. In 22AL, an area
in the product value chain (controlled-temperature
adjacent to Mercabarna that belongs to the Zona
warehouse management, logistics and transport,
Franca Consortium, it has been established that
distribution, importing, exporting, etc.). The ZAC also creates
new activity licences will only be granted for
strong synergies between suppliers and customers, given
activities related to the commerce, industry and
that the purchasing platforms of distribution companies
distribution of agri-food products. Mercabarna
make it possible to establish economies of scale and
will therefore grow by an additional 44 hectares
different advantages for the companies operating there
as a means of increasing the development of
(purchasing and logistics flexibility, reduction of stocks and
Mercabarna and the agri-food industry in general
(at present 15% of the plots of land on the Zona
Franca Industrial Estate is dedicated to the agri-
20 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 21
Food Platform 07 A Focus on Research
Barcelona Food Platform is Barcelona Food Platform will provide space for Catalonia, and the Greater Catalonia, and the Greater Barcelona Area in
an initiative in progress for innovative companies in the agri-food industry on Barcelona Area in particular, particular, boasts a wide range of research centres
the development of a a plot of land of more than 30 hectares on the Zona is equipped with major and groups linked to the food industry that contribute
technology park for Franca Industrial Estate. infrastructure, platforms to creating a business community that understands
innovation and provide the R&D services companies
innovative companies that Barcelona Food Platform will therefore provide agri- and universities dedicated
generate and provide food companies with access to technologies and to research, development
technological and logistics services that will help them improve their and innovation in the agri- They include:
services to the agri-food competitiveness and business projection through food industry that • Innovative Technological Analysis for
industry and related such actions as improving products and processes, contribute to extensive Competitive Industrial Processes (ATIPIC).
sectors. distribution and export logistics, and innovation in knowledge of the industry • Centre for Agro-food Economy and
the introduction and creation of new products. and provide companies Development (CREDA).
with the R&D and • Centre for Animal Health Research (CReSA).
innovation services they • Spanish National Research Council (CSIC).
need to increase the added
• School of Agriculture of Barcelona.
Barcelona Food Platform focuses on value of their products, take
• Catalan Institute of Wine and Vineyards.
technologies such as: advantage of new
technologies and innovate. • Institute for Food and Agricultural Research
• Freezing and cryogenics.
and Technology (IRTA).
• Improving preparation, evisceration and • CSIC-IRTA Consortium Plant Molecular
dispensing. Genetics Laboratory.
• Pasteurization and sterilization.
At the same time, the main Catalan universities have
• Packaging and palletization.
research groups with links to the agri-food industry
• Identification, such as labelling and that carry out basic and applied research:
radiofrequency identification. • Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.
• Innovative technologies such as radiation • Universitat de Barcelona.
treatments, fast drying, • Universitat de Girona.
• Universitat de Lleida.
• Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya.
Barcelona Food Platform provides the • Universitat Rovira i Virgili.
• Warehousing: refrigeration, controlled
The Triptolemos Foundation for Agri-food Development is a private institution whose objective is to
• Consulting on R&D and innovation. define and create a cross-cutting framework for dialogue, exchange of knowledge and activities
between the agents involved in the agri-food chain, especially in the area of R&D and innovation. Its
• Product innovation and market research.
mission is to promote actions that increase the availability, quality, knowledge of and trust in food. The
• Inspection, auditing and certification. foundation’s headquarters is in Barcelona.
22 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 23
08 Alimentaria International
Food and Beverage
Alimentaria is the most important international food trade fair in Spain
and one of the largest in the world. Organized every other year,
Alimentaria has been held seventeen times and has become a real
meeting point for the international food and distribution industry where
the main sector innovations and trends are presented.
Nearly 4,800 exhibitors (a 20% increase in the last 20 years) from leading companies in
the production and distribution of food and beverages from more than 70 countries meet
at this international event every two years. A total of 158,000 visitors attended the last
fair, 21% of whom were from 155 foreign countries. Alimentaria has thus become an
international business centre and a bridge between Europe, Africa and Latin America, which A multi-sectoral fair representing all
is one of the advantages of the international trade fairs held in Barcelona. industries:
Based on its privileged position, backed by its track record and guided by the key words of CONGELEXPO. Frozen products.
innovation, professionalization, internationalization and dynamic activities, as well as its
exhibition space, Alimentaria is without a doubt very highly respected. EXPOBEBIDAS. Soft drinks, mineral water, beer,
cider and grape juice.
The trade fair generates more than €1.8 billion in business for participating companies
while it produces profit for the city of Barcelona to the tune of €168 million. However, the EXPOCONSER. Preserves and semi-preserves.
impact of the show is not only quantitative, but extremely qualitative, as reflected by the INTERCARN. Meat and meat products.
many parallel activities that are held: Alimentaria Premium, the International Food Forum,
the Futura d'Innova shop and the 7th International Conference on the Mediterranean Diet. INTERLACT. Dairy products.
OLIVARIA. Olive oil.
INTERPESCA. Seafood, aquaculture and fish
INTERVIN. Wine and spirits.
MULTIPRODUCTO. General food products.
MUNDIDULCE. Sweets, biscuits and
RESTAURAMA. Eating out.
VEGEFRUIT. Fresh fruit and vegetables.
2004 2006 2008 ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY AND ORGANIC
Net exhibition space 105,815 m2 115,000 m2 122,000 m2 FOODS
Space for dynamic activities
6,000 m2 7,000 m2 9,000 m2 ALIMENTARIA PREMIUM. Premium products.
Participating companies 4,087 4,148 4,806
Professional visitors 142,513 152,344 157,632
International professional visitors 31,000 32,892 33,418
24 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 25
The food industry is strengthened by a food culture based on quality
Markets are also cultural references
and health, which is why the municipal markets are well stocked with
excellent products, especially in the Barcelona area. These markets A number of different activities, campaigns and
have a thousand-year-old history and form a key part of the city’s cultural events take place at municipal markets:
economy. A wide selection of food products are available, especially • Promotional campaigns such as Come to Your
fresh products. Market and Cuisine Science.
• Programmes to disseminate healthy food
There are 170 municipal markets in Catalonia, of which 46 are in the different neighbourhoods culture such as To the Market for Health.
of the city of Barcelona and have a total of 8,790 stalls. Barcelona’s markets are grouped
• Participation in events and conferences such
in the network of the Institute of Municipal Markets of Barcelona, the largest in Europe.
as A Taste of Barcelona.
In figures, municipal markets boast more than 100,000 m2 of commercial space and 3,500
• Organizing product samples and exhibitions
commercial establishments, while providing more than 5,000 direct jobs. They are estimated
such as the Country Food Shows in Berguedà
to receive about 50 million visitors a year who spend a total of €500 million.
and La Boqueria.
Of note is that the municipal markets organize many dynamic activities that contribute to
• Entertainment activities during major holidays
disseminating food culture based on a balanced, quality, healthy diet.
such as Christmas, the Epiphany and Mardi Gras,
and cultural activities at markets such as Arts
Night in Sarrià.
Markets with projection in Europe • Campaigns aimed at immigrants, through
training, information about native products and
Different markets and towns that believe in bringing Europe closer to people and raising the introduction of new products, etc.
concern about the quality of life of its inhabitants have created EMPORION, a European
association that groups together the best food markets. The association has its headquarters • Presentations, sessions and tours with students
in Barcelona and encourages markets to improve their daily performance and to ensure they to teach about eating habits.
are heard in the European Union.
26 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 27
10 Barcelona and
the Mediterranean Diet
Catalonia as an international
Barcelona has a clear cultural interest in the agri-food industry and, benchmark in gastronomy
together with the main countries on the Mediterranean, has submitted an
Also of note is the international recognition of
official request to have the Mediterranean diet included on the UNESCO
Catalan restaurants. For example, Catalonia has
list of intangible cultural heritage of humanity.
the highest number of Michelin-starred
establishments in Spain:
Of special note in this area is the Mediterranean Diet • Restaurants with 1 star: 29
Foundation (FDM), a non-profit organization of a strictly
scientific and cultural nature whose main objective is to • Restaurants with 2 stars: 2
preserve the age-old heritage of the populations on the • Restaurants with 3 stars: 3
shores of the Mediterranean Sea, i.e. the philosophy of
El Bulli (Ferran Adrià)
life and eating habits that have sparked the interest of
eminent scientists all over the world in recent decades Racó de Can Fabes (Santi Santamaria)
due to their contribution to the prevention of numerous Sant Pau (Carme Ruscalleda)
ailments. With this aim in mind, the Foundation promotes
research and the dissemination of the scientific
advantages for health of the Mediterranean diet and
The Foundation Board receives support from the following official institutions:
• Spanish Ministry of the Environment, the Rural Community and the Sea.
• Catalan Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Action.
• Barcelona City Council.
• Association for the Advancement of the Mediterranean Diet (ADDM).
The Foundation’s main activities include:
• Educational campaigns on eating and the Mediterranean diet for schools.
• Report of the International Observatory on the Mediterranean Diet.
• Organization of the international conference in Barcelona on the Mediterranean diet.
• Collaboration with different institutions and organizations to raise awareness about
the Mediterranean diet, such as Barcelona City Council, the Spanish Ministry of the
Environment, the Rural Community and the Sea, the Spanish Federation of the Food
and Beverages Industries (FIAB), the organizing committee of Alimentaria, etc.
• Forming part of the NAOS strategy (nutrition, physical activity, obesity prevention)
to implement actions to promote the Mediterranean diet, and participation in different
conferences and congresses.
Moreover, a scientific committee has been created with more than 23 renowned international
researchers from more than 12 countries to strengthen the international projection of
Mediterranean food and gastronomic culture.
28 10 Reasons to Invest in the Agri-food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 29
Websites of Interest
Local and Autonomous Emporion Escola Superior d'Agricultura de
Community Organizations www.emporion.org Barcelona (School of Agriculture of
Fira de Barcelona Trade Fair Centre Barcelona)
22@Barcelona www.firabcn.es www.esab.upc.edu
Mediterranean Diet Foundation (FDM) IESE
ACC1Ó CIDEM|COPCA www.fdmed.org www.iese.edu
Triptolemus Foundation Institut Català de la Vinya i el Vi
Invest in Catalonia www.triptolemos.org (Catalan Institute of Wine and
Barcelona City Council Universities and Research
www.bcn.cat Centres Institut de Recerca and Tecnologies
Agroalimentàries (Institute for Food
Catalan Ministry of Agriculture, Food Anàlisi Tecnològica Innovadora per a and Agricultural Research and
and Rural Action Processos Industrials Competitius Technology, IRTA)
www.gencat.cat/darp (Innovative Technological Analysis for www.irta.es
Competitive Industrial Processes,
Institute of Municipal Markets ATIPIC) Laboratori de Genètica Molecular
www.mercatsbcn.com www.atipic.es Vegetal Consorci CSIC-IRTA (CSIC-IRTA
Consortium Plant Molecular Genetics
Mercabarna Centre de Recerca en Economia and Laboratory)
www.mercabarna.es Desenvolupament Agroalimentari www.csic-irta.es
(Centre for Agro-food Economy and
Development, CREDA) Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona
National Organizations www.creda.es www.uab.es
Barcelona City Council - Economic Promotion
Spanish Ministry of the Environment, Centre de Recerca en Sanitat Animal Universitat de Barcelona
ACC1Ó CIDEM|COPCA. Government of Catalonia
the Rural Community and the Sea (Centre for Animal Health Research, www.ub.edu
Barcelona Chamber of Commerce
www.cresa.es Universitat de Girona Design
www.ubg.es Glòria Escoruela - g.grafic
Business Organizations Consejo Superior de Investigaciones
Científicas (Spanish National Research Universitat de Lleida Printing
Gráficas Sierra S.L.
AECOC – GS1 Spain Council, CSIC) www.ubl.es
Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya
Barcelona Chamber of Commerce ESADE www.upc.es
D.L. (legal deposit)
Barcelona, March 2009
Universitat Rovira i Virgili Circulation: 2,000 (english version)
30 Websites of Interest The Agri-Food Industry in Barcelona and Catalonia 31