La Mataró – craft beer linked to the Maresme

David Simon and Eva Rico Pachón visited IGCAT’s newly establish offices in Sant Pol de Mar to discuss the challenges of developing micro-businesses with new food markets.
David and Eva have been producing high quality beer for several years and would like to expand however the costs are prohibitive for small scale producers.
They were seeking advice and support on how to expand their products and production levels.

David and Eva’s products have some elements that excited us IGCAT:

– they use natural and high quality ingredients

– they are linked to the place by name and sentiment (Mataró)

– they have a story (named after the first train in Spain)

– they inject innovation in the local offer

– they offer an educational element (discovery)

We explored together some of the obstacles for small producers including high cost base and poor visibility.

They identified areas where public support might help including:

– a stamp of quality (providing recognition and legitimacy is crucial)

– acknowledgement and visibility as a regional food product (in fairs and websites)

– introductions to restaurants and hotels

– training for waiters so they can in turn educate clients

– network support

– subsidies (direct – rather than indirect via large supermarkets chains)

Small business , like this one, represent a public good if you consider them as an educational model. It was therefore suggested that the company register an association and seek benefits as an educational endeavour. Seeking a central space (in town) where people could visit and see the beer being made, as well take part in tastings, would be a more attractive package for a city council and therefore it is possible that the much needed space required for expansion could be provided by a public administration  (thus also lowering the cost base for our small producers).

The combination of an educational offer, creative tourism package and the production of unique beers, is a model IGCAT hopes to study soon.

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