We know that our quality of life increasingly depends on our ability to live within the limits of available natural resources. Intermarché Lagos is committed to encouraging the consumption of local and more sustainable food in partnership with small and medium producers in the region as well as companies founded in the municipality.
By choosing these products we are able to consume less and better and reduce environmental, social and economic impacts. According to the management of the supermarket: “Supporting local production is one of our main goals, not only for the satisfaction of our customers but also because we know that by supporting producers we are supporting a much larger and more significant process”.
“Indirectly, we are supporting the use of natural resources and energy efficiency, we have managed to reduce polluting emissions and our environmental impact. Consuming and producing locally allows us to enjoy a better quality of life and, on a larger scale, to ensure that future generations have the resources they need”.
It is inevitable to speak of the circular economy and its importance when talking about small and medium producers in our region. In the words of the management: “The consumption of these products enhances the national economy and the country’s sustainability, while avoiding the negative consequences of transporting food products from other countries and keeping financial resources here”.
Especially in view of the current globalpandemic situation and the harmful consequences that are already being felt in small businesses, Intermarché Lagos expresses its interest in strengthening its support - “The objective is to raise awareness among Portuguese and foreign residents in our city of the importance of consuming national and local products, to financially support producers in times of crisis like these.”
The store management even claims that buying from these producers is a valuable way of making the region’s values ?? known - “The consumption of national / local and traditional products from the Algarve region is also important in order to strengthen ties with our culture that is very rich in terms of its variety of fruits and vegetables, traditional products such as honey, liqueurs, charcuterie, and even handicrafts. We are able to inform our customers of national products and especially the local fresh products that are truly authentic and of very high quality.”
There is an urgent need to support smallholder agriculture and companies that are founded in our community, thereby motivating them to produce more. According to the administration: “In all of our traditional sections, and beyond, we have local options that, by themselves, mean fresher and healthier products, since the faster the food reaches us, the greater the likelihood of it not having lost all the nutrients beneficial to our health; this means that we are helping families and farmers who live in remote regions without great employment opportunities, given that the consumption of local products helps to maintain the economy of small communities. It also means less waste and pollution; it means that we are building a community, since we are creating links between those who eat and those who produce and it means that we are investing in the future because we are ensuring that they will continue to exist in our community tomorrow while local production generates more jobs and this contributes to the reduction of rural depopulation”.
In this way we realise the great positiveimpact that Intermarché Lagos generates when buying from small and medium producers, from companies founded by people born in the community and who invest in their growth. In this sense, one of the most recent partnerships of Intermarché de Lagos with local producers is the sale of Mr. Joaquim Palmito’s 100% artisanal caramels. This partnership, according to him, “arose through the Association of Artisans of the Barlavento based in the city of Lagos, of which I am a partner”. For the artisan, this commercial partnership is very important in terms of the recognition of local artisanal work because “You value my product when selling it, making the quality of the product known to more people”. Mr. Joaquim Palmito is a good example of this union of forces since here he can deliver his product to a greater variety of customers - “Intermarche de Lagos is a supermarket of great value which is concerned with satisfying local and foreign customers. The latter are the most appreciative of homemade Algarve products”.
In the case of local companies, the supermarket finalised a partnership at the end of 2020 with Congelagos, a fish processing company belonging to the Battaglia Capital Group, which has diversified interests in fisheries, aquaculture, among other areas. Located in Lagos, Congelagos has the capacity to process 300 tonnes per day and store 5,400 tonnes of frozen produce, using the most advanced freezing technologies. According to this company, “Congelagos and Intermarché de Lagos started their first contacts in early 2020. The potential of the partnership was quickly realised and a similar market vision was shared, where both intend to offer products with differentiated quality, privileging health and origin. We started this partnership with the sale of Polvo and Choco do Algarve, free of chemicals or other additives. We are sure that it will be a lasting partnership, with very interesting results for both parties and for the community.”
Concerning the benefits that this partnership brings to the company, Congelagos states that “it is, a means of offering our community healthy, national products, with high quality. We believe that it will also be a platform for us to develop innovative products in terms of taste, convenience and that provide an extraordinary gastronomic experience. We believe that together we can innovate and create new products, always based on the ethos of both brands: quality, health and origin”.
Concerning the values ?? that both companies share within the same community, Congelados adds that “part of our premise is that fishing is only sustainable if it is for everyone - the sea, the fisherman, the customer, the community and the company. When we contacted the heads of Intermarché de Lagos, we quickly realised that many of the values ?? were shared, namely with regard to the offer of healthy, high quality products and the clear concern with origin and transparency with consumers”.
Ultimately, the commitment that they seeks to maintain within the community is to improve the quality of life for current and future generations, allowing communities to become sustainable, socially just and inclusive, with a strong and viable local economy. According to the supermarket administration, “the consumption of local products helps to preserve the culture and identity of a locality, a region and the Algarve has a lot of potential in many business areas and if consumers choose to increasingly consume what is produced locally, production also increases, which will contribute to the increase of the economy in the region and therefore the country as a whole ”