Both national and international companies in the food industry had the chance to discover the potential that Valle del Cauca has for investment and business expansion thanks to Invest Pacific’s participation in Alimentec, an international trade fair for the food and beverage industry. This fair has established itself as a leading platform for promoting products and services related to food and gastronomy.
This fair was held in Bogota from June 7 to 10, 2022. There, Invest Pacific sought to meet with foreign capital companies with commercial ties to Colombia in order to garner interest in investment in the region. Also, organizations that did not yet have a presence in Valle del Cauca were identified and inquired about their medium and long term expansion plans, with a view to promoting the department.
There are many reasons for the food industry to set its sights on Valle del Cauca: on the one hand, the department’s agro-industrial production represents 22% of the national total. On the other hand, its strategic location in southwestern Colombia allows it to supply the national and international markets.
This is due to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean and Buenaventura, the country’s main ports, which moves 43% of foreign trade. On top of that, up to 75% of the local market can be covered from Valle del Cauca.
Some other regional advantages include having the best cost-efficiency ratio in real estate and salaries compared to other regions in Colombia. It also has qualified human talent for the agroindustrial sector, as several higher education institutions have programs focused on agroindustry. Just to give an example, SENA trains more than 8,500 students per year in fields focused on the food industry.
Lastly, Valle del Cauca is the main national producer of confectionery, oils, fats, sugar, processed fruits and vegetables. Renowned research and technological development centers can also be found there, such as Bayer Crop Science’s La Tupia Experimental Center; Agrosavia; Cenicaña, and CIAT, whose bank Future Seeds holds the world’s largest collections of beans, yucca and tropical forages.
World-class food industry companies with production centers located in Valle del Cauca, such as Cargill, Nestlé, Unilever, AB InBev and Ingredion, also participated in Alimentec, proving the great investment potential of the department and the region.