Napa valley, april 21, 2016. - the catalan company grup pons is presenting in the most important food congress of the united states this week three new types of olive oils flavoured with mint, saffron and ginger. the event is worlds of flavor, celebrated in santa helena (napa valley, california), organised by the culinary institute of america (cia), the world’s most prestigious university in the area of culinary training and gastronomic sciences.
during this trade mission to the usa organised by the government of catalonia through catalonia trade & investment agency and led by the minister of business and knowledge of catalonia, jordi baiget, grup pons is presenting these new types of olive oils in a congress that has the participation of 800 top management figures from restaurant and hotel chains, as well as operators and chefs, all coming to see the latest international culinary trends.
last year the company increased its turnover by 7% in the united states, up to 2.5 million euros and exporting 600,000 bottles of oil. according the us sales manager for the united states, jack haro, “it is very interesting to participate in worlds of flavor given the presence of prestigious chefs, who can try out the new olive oils we are presenting”. in fact, its entrance into the country via chefs from prestigious restaurant was one of the strategies the company followed in 1997 when it first entered the american market. “in the beginning we only sold to the hotel, restaurant and catering channel and we saw that american chefs greatly appreciated the quality and taste of our olive oil”, says haro, who explains that then “we started to participate in trade fairs and discovered there was a niche in the market and we opened the first warehouse and offices in baltimore, maryland”. today, they sell their products to american stores such as whole foods market, bristol farms, plum market and t.j. maxx.
according to haro, “today we are one of the most innovative companies in the country, we have developed propellant free olive oil sprays, infusions and new lines of vinegars” for example. the company, which exports to a total of 140 countries, also makes special mention of the agreement with the firm tabasco to sell a product developed between the two brands.
as well as casa pons, the other catalan companies participating in the worlds of flavor congress are cadí, moritz, caviaroli, inpanasa, priorat natur, sosa ingredients and urgasa. the wineries, which are at the fair represented by a team from catalonia trade & investment, are caves torelló, mas bertran, agrícola sant josep, celler mas d’en blei, molí parellada, cellers unió and buil giné.
the united states trade mission
this presence at world of flavours in napa valley is part of an institutional and trade mission organised by catalonia trade & investment led by the minister of business and knowledge, jordi baiget, and the director general for industry, núria betriu. the catalan delegation has already visited florida and california to boost business cooperation with catalonia and look for business opportunities in the areas of gastronomy and technological innovation. in miami, 3 catalan companies participated in the emerge fair and the minister signed an memorandum of understanding with the beacon council, the agency for economic development of the county.
in san francisco, baiget met with representatives of the californian government and gave a presentation to the public-private business association bay area council in front of local companies. the final stage will be washington, where the minister will meet with senior staff from the world bank and the inter-american development bank (idb) to look for new ways to boost innovation and foreign trade for catalan companies.