Khalil Nasrallah, executive manager of Wadi Food Khalil Nasrallah, executive manager of Wadi Food

Wadi Food has revealed that customers are no longer looking for organic produce, but pesticide-free fruit and vegetables.

The Egyptian olive producer told Hotelier, at Gulfood, that worldwide its main customer base are not as interested in organic produce as they once were, instead looking for guarantees of pesticide-free products.

Khalil Nasrallah, executive manager of Wadi Food, said: “We have found that most of our clients are more concerned about pesticide residue than the certification of organic. That is why we are expanding in both directions – organic and GlobalGap, which is basically guaranteeing our produce is pesticide free but not having the organic certification.

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“It is less expensive and, as a producer, we can produce more. It is win-win situation. The consumer wins in the end, too, because they will buy healthy, safe products that are cheaper.”

At Gulfood Wadi Food is also launching its new range of artichokes. Along with its tomato paste products, launched last year, they are not grown by Wadi Food. Nasrallah said: “Although we don’t grow the tomatoes and artichokes at the moment, if there is a demand in the market, we would look into the possibility.”

In August 2011 Wadi Food opened it new processing facility in Egypt, which has the capability of processing 15,000 metric tons of olives, and 1,500 metric tons of olive oil.