Food ex­ports thrive in pan­demic

Kathimerini English - - Front Page - BY DESPINA KONTI

The food sec­tor showed its strength dur­ing the pan­demic, with Greek ex­ports gain­ing ground and cre­at­ing the nec­es­sary con­di­tions for their fur­ther pen­e­tra­tion of in­ter­na­tional mar­kets.

Tak­ing ad­van­tage of the coro­n­avirus junc­ture, the sec­tor can lay a claim to even higher mar­ket shares abroad, of­fer­ing another 1.2 bil­lion eu­ros per an­num, ac­cord­ing to es­ti­mates. For that to hap­pen, Greek en­ter­prises in the sec­tor will have to fol­low the ex­am­ple of five Greek prod­ucts that stand out for their ex­port-minded char­ac­ter: They are olives, honey, yo­gurt, kiwi fruit and ap­ples.

Thanks to the pos­i­tive health pic­ture Greece dis­played this spring, Greek food ex­ports posted a 9% in­crease in the MarchApril 2020 pe­riod com­pared to a year ear­lier, at a time when over­all Greek ex­ports en­dured pres­sure that saw them drop by 7% (fuel ex­ports ex­cluded), ac­cord­ing to a study by Na­tional Bank of Greece.

The lender’s report speaks of a great op­por­tu­nity for Greek food prod­ucts to con­sol­i­date their po­si­tion in for­eign mar­kets given that this country was the only one in the Euro­pean Union to regis­ter a rise in food or­ders from abroad in March and April: The ex­port or­ders in­dex rose to +13 points at the end of April, from +3 points at end-March. This re­flects the fact that the ma­jor­ity of Greek food ex­porters re­ported an in­crease in or­ders from abroad for the com­ing months.

The NBG report took a closer look at the five ex­am­ples of food ex­ports that have out­per­formed other lo­cal pro­duce and noted a num­ber of key el­e­ments that have made the dif­fer­ence in their fa­vor: Their fo­cus on de­vel­oped mar­kets, their pro­mo­tion in branded form (as op­posed to bulk), and the tar­get­ing of pre­mium mar­kets, as op­posed to mass mar­kets.

Es­pe­cially in the case of olives, the NBG an­a­lysts pointed out the sig­nif­i­cant share this Greek prod­uct has in in­ter­na­tional mar­kets, ac­count­ing for 17% of vol­ume, as well as a high av­er­age price – about 50% above the av­er­age rate – to hold the lead in the pre­mium mar­ket. Olive ex­ports soared from 190 mil­lion eu­ros in 2009 to €452 mil­lion in 2019.

of olives, the NBG an­a­lysts pointed out the sig­nif­i­cant share this Greek prod­uct has in in­ter­na­tional mar­kets, ac­count­ing for 17% of vol­ume, as well as a high av­er­age price – about 50% above the av­er­age rate – to hold the lead in the pre­mium mar­ket.

In the case

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