Anuga, one of the largest food fairs in the world, is currently taking place in Germany, and almost 30 Irish food companies will advertise their produce under Bord Bia’s ‘Origin Green’ banner.

Bord Bia’s presence at the fair – held in the west German city of Cologne – is described as being part of a “strategic vision” to promote Irish agri-food products to global markets.

The Anuga fair is taking place from October 5 to 9, and will feature a “record breaking” 29 Irish companies among the exhibitors, a number of whom are new businesses appearing for the first time at the annual fair.

According to Bord Bia, Anuga attracts interest from buyers in some of Ireland’s “priority markets” – including the UK, China, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands.

In looking for new markets, Bord Bia CEO Tara McCarty said: “limited market knowledge and a lack of business relationships are the biggest challenges faced when pursing new markets.”

“Our presence at Anuga allows us to address these challenges on several fronts: we invest in lead generation to place targeted buyers in front of exhibitors and we provide a suite of services to help companies leverage business opportunities during and post-Anuga,” added McCarthy.

McCarthy also explained that the Irish exhibitors at Anuga this year were each given research reports to “equip them with the required market knowledge to support buyer meetings and, given the opportunity to partake in commercial marketing strategy workshops, to build capability”.

Companies from a wide range of sectors and products will exhibit, including; meat; dairy; bakery products; frozen products; and chilled and fresh produce.

The record number of Irish exhibitors, and the seven Irish companies exhibiting for the first time, reflect “the ever increasing global outlook and capabilities of Irish food and drink producers”, according to Minister of State for Food, Forestry and Horticulture Andrew Doyle, who is part of the Irish delegation.

Also part of the delegation is Bord Bia chairman Dan MacSweeney, who commented: “The Irish companies attending Anuga are excellent ambassadors for the Irish food and drink industry and showcase the high level of innovation, expertise and craftsmanship within our industry.”

“We have companies from all over Ireland present, demonstrating the importance of our largest indigenous sector for the Irish economy,” MacSweeney added.