"For me this is a return to the origins, I am from here …" – Nuno Battaglia
Congelagos – Fish and Frozen Processing Factory, located in Odiáxere in the municipality of Lagos, main project of the Battaglia Capital Group, SA, was inaugurated this Friday, at the time, its chairman, Nuno Battaglia, explained to the newspaper diariOnline South region, not only the project but also the reasons that led to its realization in the land that saw it born and grow, having revealed that "spent more time in the water than in classrooms".
The official ceremony, taking into account that after the building the factory has been working since November, was attended by the Minister of the Sea, Ana Paula Vitorino, the Secretary of State for Fisheries, José Apolinário, the Mayor of Lagos, Maria Joaquina Matos, as well as many individuals from the political and business sector, including fishing owners.
Nuno Battaglia has Jorge Grave and António Castel-Branco, two friends of childhood and adolescence, who now together carry out a project that revives the history of Lagos, an Algarve city with great fishing traditions that date back two centuries.
"It is not by chance that in this venture they are betting on species such as mackerel, horse mackerel and octopus, species in which from an environmental point of view, we have no problems. Mackerel is so abundant that it has no fishing quota, while that the horse mackerel quota is never reached ", stressed Ana Paula Vitorino also stressing the aspect of the valorization of endogenous resources.
The governor also stressed that "No business today can survive if it does not have sustainability criteria. Nothing can be done against nature, against natural resources."
It should be noted that the capture of horse mackerel and mackerel, in addition to valuing these two species, according to studies carried out, will contribute to a growth of the quantity of sardines in the sea, considering that the first are predators of the latter essentially in its formation phase while fish.
Maria Joaquina Matos, began by recalling the economic history of the county, always linked to fisheries and preserves, overtaken in recent years by tourism, arguing that this plant means "it resumes an industry connected to the sea, something that is in Lagos DNA."
"The return home of this son of the land was well worth it. It is not every day that witness the inauguration of a factory with this dimension, in terms of investment, innovation, productive capacity and entrepreneurship", said the mayor of Lagos.
It should be noted that the construction of the factory complex, with about 7,500 square meters of construction area, on two floors, is endowed with the most modern and efficient machinery and equipment, having taken about seven months to be built. The new unit had a total investment of 16 million euros, which was contributed by 6.5 million euros from the MAR2020 operational program, with the creation of 75 direct jobs.
Capable of receiving and processing up to 300 tonnes of fish per day and storing up to 3,400 tonnes, Congelagos will work with local fishermen and contribute to the sustainability of fishing activity and resources. The work enters cruise speed at the end of next April and beginning of May, when the high catch of mackerel and horse mackerel begins.
Congelagos will export approximately 80% of its production to countries such as Spain, the United Kingdom, Malta, Croatia and Turkey, and it is estimated that in 2019 the export of 15 thousand tonnes of horse mackerel and mackerel will originate from production. Big bet will be made on the markets gourmet, which value these products, which will allow the Algarve company to increase the price paid to fishermen and shipowners.