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Brazilian Food and Drinks are Doing Great Business in IndyCar
ABBA, the Brazilian Association of Food and Beverage Exporters and Importers is showing a very positive balance of its participation in the IndyCar Series, where they were able to execute commercial promotion actions as part of the partnership between Apex-Brasil and the Indy Racing League. Final figures totaling an estimate of the businesses that the event could have generated for the sector are not available yet. However, some ABBA associates are showing partial numbers that offer a glimpse of how big the American market can potentially be for this sector of the Brazilian Industry.

Just Mr. Z, a Brazilian company that has positioned itself as the world largest manufacturer of beef jerky, expects to increase its exports to the United States by close to US$ 17.4 million dollars during the next 12 months, as a direct result of contacts made during the IndyCar races.

On top of this partial ABBA figures, we have to add US$1.5 million generated by the wines sector, one more million by the fruit exporters, and US$1.2 million by Natural Option, a manufacturer of nutritional supplements. The result of this preliminary balance represents a US$24 million dollars increase of the exports of the Brazilian sector of food and drinks. That amount does not include the numbers of the makers of the cachaça Velho Barreiro, and they calculate their sales have climbed about 20% in those regions where those races where they promoted the product took place, including Miami, where ABBA invited large network distributors to follow the race and talk business.

“We don’t have those figures yet, but the distributors who sell products o four associates in the US have told us that the approach to the clients -promoted by the IndyCar effort- has proven excellent results and some deals are already in progress, thanks to the contacts made there,” says Raquel Salgado, general manager of the Ethnic Brazil Project of ABBA, and responsible for the organization of all promotional actions of the entity in the United States.

For the race in Homestead-Miami Speedway, ABBA invited six potential buyers from large networks, among them four supermarket chains, such as Sedano’s, aimed at the Latin community; Sysco, one of the largest suppliers of bars and restaurants in the US, and a small retailers network in Massachusetts.

Besides all these networking activities, the participant food and drinks companies promoted sampling of their products during the IndyCar races, as well as collateral events. Mr. Z offered five thousand units of their beef jerky packs for the general public, while Schincariol and Velho Barreiro served their products to the VIP, inside the Apex-Brasil suites.

Also, ABBA promoted samplings with diverse Brazilian products before the race in Miami, and a significant amount of tickets for the IndyCar Series championship race were given to the winners of a raffle promoted with customers interested in Brazilian products. This particular action took place at five Sedano’s Supermarkets in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale market, and 50 tickets for the last race of the season were given to the winners. “It was a total success,” says Raquel.

She also highlights that ABBA considers the US as a market with great potential for the small and medium size Brazilian companies of this sector, because it has three different demand profiles that could be explored by these companies: “the nostalgic market”, composed by those Brazilians who live in that country; the always growing Latin-market, and finally, those Americans with great sympathy for Brazil.

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