The Brazilian Association of Exporting Producers of Fruits and Derivatives (Abrafrutas) held today (19) virtual meeting with the Minister of Agriculture, Tereza Cristina who was accompanied by ambassador Orlando Leite Ribeiro. The event aimed to address the same theme discussed last week with Environment Minister Ricardo Salles about the image of Brazilian agro in the foreign market and its effects on Brazilian fruit exports.
The president of Abrafrutas, Guilherme Coelho, initially presented the minister the concern of the sector with the image of Brazil in the foreign market. "As fruit exporters we are concerned about the image of our agro out there, we are hearing conversations from supermarkets, distributors and others that misrepresents our reality and this has been one of our major concerns," explained Guilherme.
The Minister said that unfortunately this is a frequent theme in meetings and that joint work between the public and private sector is important. Although the ministry has already been carrying out some actions, the minister says they are still small close to what the country should do.
"It is important to be informed of you what you are saying, we already have some answers to be sent to our embassy, so that when some unfounded news comes out, you oppose the truth," the minister said.
Opening of new markets was also guided at the meeting. According to the association, about 80% of the country's fruit exports go to Europe and the opening of new markets has become a major factor for the sector.
According to Ambassador Orlando, there are currently 59 Pest Risk Analysis (ARPs) underway, which involves negotiations with 34 countries. The apple, according to him, is the fruit with more countries in negotiations, altogether are 19, followed by melon with 9, avocado 7, Tahiti lemon 6 and grape 4.
Orlando also told producers that these possibilities of opening new markets have been happening due to a change of thinking, in the sense that to open an external market it is also necessary to open the market itself.
"We have given priorities to the countries that have also prioritized us, with this we have been able to move forward in new openings," the ambassador said.
As phytosanitary issues delay negotiations greatly, both the minister and the ambassador proposed that producers also think about exporting a larger volume of processed fruits.
The meeting, which lasted about an hour and a half, also addressed other issues such as the Mercosur and European Union agreement, Minor Crops, agricultural pesticides and the internet in the field. Attentive to the demands, Minister Tereza Cristina requested another meeting with technicians of mapa and Abrafrutas in the coming weeks.