Grup Balfegó, the company based in L’Ametlla de Mar that markets wild bluefin tuna in 32 countries, plans to close the fiscal year corresponding to 2021/2022, which runs from May 1, 2021 to April 30, 2022, with about 75 million turnover, a record in the company. The company invests 27 million in a new factory in the same town.
Balfegó fishes for bluefin tuna when it is allowed, between the months of May and June, and, unlike other companies, it transports them alive to the aquaculture facilities it has in l’Ametlla de Mar, where it feeds them with mackerel and sardines to improve the product quality.
In June 2018, Balfegó suffered a fire at its factory in l’Ametlla and had to find alternative facilities to continue producing.
The CEO of Grup Balfegó, Juan Serrano, explains that Balfegó began in February this year to build a new factory in L’Ametlla de Mar that will occupy 12,000 square meters and that he wants it to be “a large food industry”.
Serrano specified that they will invest 27 million euros in these new facilities, capable of processing tuna “both fresh and frozen”, and that they should be finished by the end of March 2023. It will create 50 new jobs.
“We will make a completely modern factory,” says the manager, who adds that the new facilities will also be able to produce even for the gourmet retail channel.
And it is that until now Balfegó was directed exclusively to the restaurant channel, but weighs the option of entering the retail channel in high-end stores, so that the consumer “can become a foodie at home,” says Serrano.
The CEO predicts that the 2021/22 fiscal year will close with double-digit growth in terms of billing. The previous fiscal year -in 2020/21- ended with an income of 47 million euros, but it was highly conditioned by the Gloria storm, which occurred at the beginning of 2020, since the waves caused 10,000 bluefin tuna stored in the farm marina that the group has off the coast could escape, so almost all production was lost.
Thus, the comparison of 2021 with respect to 2020 – the year in which the company registered losses – shows an increase in billing of 59%, but Serrano clarifies that, if there had not been this problem, which was later followed by the pandemic, a turnover of 61 million euros, for which he takes this last figure as a reference and estimates the growth between one year and another “around 20%” -22.9%, exactly-.