Two Colombian entrepreneurs took banana snacks from Uraba to the UK

With the idea of ​​showing the flavors of the Colombian countryside abroad, Daniela Orego and Natalia Welch, who are Kalinia and Beriana who live in the United Kingdom, decided to create the Loro Crisps brand in 2019, some banana snacks, grown in Urabá Antioquia and exported from November 2020 to the Republic. The Czech Republic, the United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates.

Loro Crisps co-founder Daniela Orego says what people in the UK consume most are potato chips and large supermarkets have lanes full of different brands of this product and other similar snacks. “We realized that the Latin flavor is essential and it is our mission to make the Colombian banana the main alternative to french fries.”

According to the business, the trend today is for buyers to prefer healthy, vegan and gluten-free products, features that bananas should attract more and more consumers abroad.

In addition, for the production to take place in Colombia, the entrepreneurs obtained the support of ProColombia. Through joint work with the entity, they found a great player and supplier in Urabá Antioqueño that fulfills the required standards to export products from this region of Colombia.

ProColombia also accompanies them during the process of internationalizing Loro Crisps products and continues to create spaces to create powerful alliances abroad.

Through Loro Crisps suppliers in Colombia, 68 direct factory jobs and 70 indirect jobs are created. Likewise, 44 percent of employees are heads of household, among direct and indirect workers.

The brand reaches 35 Spinneys and Choithrams stores in the United Arab Emirates, and various outlets in the Czech Republic and the United Kingdom. During the pandemic, they began to offer their products through e-commerce companies such as Amazon and subscription funds in the UK, as consumer attitudes shifted more towards online shopping.

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In the coming days, the first loaded container of the Colombian banana brand for snacks will arrive in Japan, an important step for the British company, led by Colombian entrepreneurs, which expects to complete 10 markets in the next five years, in destinations such as Canada, Spain and Ireland.

Flavia Santoro, President of ProColombia, emphasized that “Agriculture is an essential part of our economic revitalization plan and the main parameter for non-mining exports in the country. From ProColombia, we will continue to accompany companies in the sector committed to exporting value-added goods, to respond to the call of the Food and Agriculture Organization to be one of the Food stores in the world, thanks to the natural wealth of the field that are combined with the expert hands of our farmers and entrepreneurs. “

On the other hand, Natalia Welch had previously ventured another typical Colombian product: panela. With his company Pura Panela, he is also exporting to various destinations, thanks to the fact that it has become a healthy alternative to sugar, according to Welch. The businesswoman said, “Our panela bags are made from sugar cane to also help care for the environment, which is an attractive item for foreign consumers.”

For Loro Crisps, future plans for the entrepreneurs include preparing snacks from cassava or chontaduro and the ability to implement “Loro Travels” to Colombia, where foreigners can see where the snacks they sell are produced, one once the flow of international travel has stabilized.

According to figures from Dane, with analysis from ProColombia, fruit snack exports reached US $ 61.6 million in 2020, which is a 0.7% increase over the previous year.

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The most exporting divisions of this type of product were Antioquia, Valle del Cauca, Bogotá, Risaralda, Caldas, Quindío and Magdalena, to countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, France, Spain, Canada, Dominican Republic and Mexico, which were the main buyers during the previous year.

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