Quality content to fore at ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA ON

FRUIT CONGRESS ON kicked off with a look at how ’s fresh produce has also been going digital this year. The keynote session, which attracted the most views for the event, was opened by Kantar’s retail, sales and shopper practice lead for South-East , Annabel Robertson, who shared her expert insight on the digitalisation of fresh food retail across , and the evolution of digital routes to market during the pandemic.

According to Robertson, Covid-19 has added fuel to a retail segment already exploding in , with an estimated 185m households in the region buying groceries via e-commerce platforms for the first time this year.
It’s not all doom and gloom for physical retail, according to Robertson, who pointed out that online retail still only makes up a small percentage of the overall grocery market in South-East .
She also underlined the strength of omnichannel retail in , with many of the region’s leading e-commerce platforms investing in developing a physical retail presence.
The session also looked at how digitisation of the supply chain can deliver end-to-end transparency. In an interview with Fruitnet’s managing director Chris White, DiMuto chief executive Gary Loh explained how his company is using blockchain technology to solve many of the issues in today’s fresh produce supply chain.
The company’s innovative solution assigns an independent digital identity to each piece of fruit in a consignment. The digital identity not only provides suppliers and their customers with traceability throughout the supply chain, it also caters to a growing interest in food provenance among end consumers. DiMuto’s solution allows shoppers to view the product’s key supply chain data by simply scanning a QR code on their mobile phones.
“We’re trying to make the world more connected and close the loop between the farmer and the consumer,” Loh said.
Visitors also took advantage of the extensive information opportunities on offer at FRUIT LOGISTICA ON’s daily online hall forums running from 18-20 November.
FRUIT FORUM offered visitors practical advice and takeaway messages for managing their with a three-track programme. Sessions on day one were themed around ‚The Supplier‘, day two turned the focus on ‘The Consumer’ while day three a special event from Global Women Fresh.

SMART HORTICULTURE focused on opportunities for high-tech horticulture, with day one focusing on ‘Vertical Farming’, day two themed around ‘Autonomous Growing and Robotic Harvesting’ and day three dedicated to ‘Data-Driven Supply Chains’.
Day one’s sessions on ‚Vertical Farming‘ attracted the most views for the forum. The five sessions brought together expertise from all over the world, and chair of Smart Horticulture , Harrij Schmeitz opened the first day suggesting that vertical farming has the potential to not just change but completely disrupt the way fresh produce is consumed.
Exemplifying the potential change this sector could bring to the fresh produce industry was Ard van de Kreeke, chief executive of Netherlands-based Growx.
Van de Kreeke detailed the start-up’s unique, fully automated operations and discussed the wider industry and his view that vertical farming is at a “tipping point”.
COOL LOGISTICS spotlighted key developments and trends in perishable logistics and cold chain management. ‘Transport Capacity’ was the headline theme on day one, while day two examined ‘New Opportunities and Logistics Solutions for Perishables’, and the programme wrapped up on day three with a session on the impact of technology and e-commerce on the logistics sector. Sessions on ‚Transport Capacity‘ polled the highest number of views at the forum. Keynote speaker André Simha, global chief digital and information officer at Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), discussed what it means to move cargo in the digital age. In his presentation, Simha extolled the importance of collaboration across the industry as a key factor in the future of refrigerated transport.
“The three main challenges we have…are volumes, changing the game, and the fact it’s not just about containers,” he told attendees. “How can we continue to feed the world in a smarter and fairer manner? As an industry we have two options – each of us can go about it on our own, or we can do it together.
“If we do it on our own, we will all invest substantial amount of money in , and in the end our customers will not reap the benefits,” he continued. “If we do it together, we can share some of the costs and research, and ensure we give our customers a solution on time.”
He acknowledged that it could be difficult for some to invest in digitalisation, but warned that only mass adoption of digital practices throughout the would make it accessible to everyone.

As well as the curated content at FRUIT LOGISTICA ON, exhibitors presented their own videos, showcases and seminars.
Peru was the Official Partner Country to FRUIT LOGISTICA ON, with export promotion agency PromPeru promoting its ‘Superfoods from Peru’ campaign via an online cooking and other activities.
Hort Innovation spearheaded Australia’s presence under the Taste Australia National Campaign Track, which attracted much attention.
“The Taste Australia track offered an array of media to suit all audiences,” said Hort Innovation’s international brand manager, Laura Davies. “The programmes included showcasing our key export commodities through the Taste Australia retail marketing programme and providing highlight reels of our exhibiting Australian exporters. We were also able to leverage our partnership with Austrade by offering an ASEAN market insights webinar delivered by Amelia Walsh, Austrade’s trade and investment commissioner – Singapore.”
Italy and France also hosted National Campaign Tracks under the ‘European Art of Taste’ and ‘European Rendez-Vous’ banners respectively.
FRUIT LOGISTICA ON’s content streams remain available to view on-demand at the FRUIT LOGISTICA ON platform until 5 December. This includes sessions from FRUIT CONGRESS ON and the online hall forums FRUIT FORUM, SMART HORTICULTURE and COOL LOGISTICS .

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