Ramirez & Cia (Filhos), SA is a Portuguese producer of canned fish products, such as tuna and sardines with tomato sauce. It also produces other foodstuffs such as canned salads. The owner is Manuel Guerreiro Ramirez.
Profile and history
As the first canned fished undertaking in the country, the VRSA plant is the cradle of the sector in Portugal. Applying the principle discovered by Nicholas Appert, and later drawn up into the theories of Pasteur, it revolutionised the concept of food conservation in Portugal. At the start of the last century exportation of products began and the first sardine steam ship was launched to sea, the Senhora da Encarnação.
With 250 employees, it has plants in Leça da Palmeira and Peniche. It sells 40 millions cans/year and exports 45% of its production, commercialised under its own brands.
Ramirez is present in the Portuguese market and in 37 international markets with a range of 55 canned fish varieties and ten brands. Ramirez’s internationalisation process began at the end of the 19th century, creating brands such as Cocagne in the Benelux countries (exported since 1906). Tomé in the Philippines, Canada and the USA, Al Fares in the Arab world, or Gabriel in South Africa, are Ramirez brands. Exportation of Ramirez’s canned fish products continues to grow in the markets of Austria, Spain, Belgium, Holland, Luxembourg, France, Brazil, England, Switzerland, South Africa, Canada, USA, Venezuela, Angola, Mozambique, Germany, Israel, Japan, China and Australia.
Ramirez possesses its own laboratory and complies with the HACCP system. The Ramirez quality control system has been ratified by control departments such as the Canadian Fisheries Inspection Agency (CFIA), South African Bureau Standards (SABS), European Food Safety Inspection Service (EFSIS), Food and Drugs Administration (FDA of the USA).
Ramirez has obtained the Quality Management System certification, governed by the NP EN ISO 9001:2000 standard, attributed by SGS, a quality certification services. Ramirez has become the first Portuguese canned fish company to be accredited by SGS.
The Ramirez Nutrition Centre, CENUTRA, set up by Ramirez, with scientific support from the Faculty of Nutrition and Food Sciences (Faculdade de Ciências da Nutrição e Alimentação) of Porto University, sponsors scientific research in health, nutrition and food sciences, especially geared towards canned fish and its benefits.
The CENUTRA aims to seek scientific knowledge that will lead to a healthy diet and disseminate it among the community. The goal is to help to promote the Mediterranean diet. Canned sardines have a high content of proteins and also vitamins B1, B2, PP, calcium, phosphorus, iron and copper.
The strategic importance of the sea
As a sponsor of the “Hypercluster do Mar” (Hypercluster of the Sea), RAMIREZ seeks through these synergies with the Porto Sea Life Center to raise awareness among the population of conservation of sea life.