The canning management says goodbye to the one who was its captain for 31 years. Juan Vieites, general secretary of the National Association of Canned Fish and Seafood Manufacturers (Anfaco-Cecopesca) announced this morning that he is leaving the position, which will pass to Roberto Alonso. The also president of the Confederation of Employers of Galicia (CEG) received the Association’s Medal of Honor in a ceremony held at the Vigo headquarters of the Círculo de Empresarios de Galicia.

Anfaco-Cecopesca claimed the “tireless” work of Vieites for 42 years, 31 of them as general secretary of the association, “turning it into the business organization of the sea-industry complex of reference at national and international level”. Vieites took advantage of the event, which was held at the Vigo headquarters of the Círculo de Empresarios de Galicia, to announce that he is retiring from it, making way for Roberto Alonso as the new secretary general of Anfaco-Cecopesca.

Vietes, who assumed the presidency of the CEG at the beginning of 2021, will now focus his work on representing the Galician employers as a whole. During his 31 years at the helm of the preserve, he has seen how the sector modernized and became one of the most important in the powerful Galician agri-food industry.

Vietes was not the only winner at the Anfaco medal ceremony, which was attended by the president of the Xunta, Alfonso Rueda; the Vice President of the Galician Government, Francisco Conde, or the Minister of the Sea, Rosa Quintana. The Gold Medal of the Association went to the Xacobeo 21-22, as a “success” that strengthens the culture-gastronomy binomial and the Galician brand as the first canned producing region in Spain. In addition, the Anfaco-Cecopesca Silver Medal went to Mercedes Rodríguez, General Director of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Technological Innovation of the Xunta, for her “commitment” to the industry and to its future.

Likewise, the Bronze Medals went to Diga Salgueiro from Conservas Albo, María Eugenia Urriolabeitia from Grupo Consorcio and María Irene Romero from Jealsa.

During his speech, President Rueda congratulated all the winners, especially Juan Vieites since, according to him, “you cannot understand” the evolution of the Galician canning industry without his 40 years of dedication. He has also thanked Xacobeo 21-22 for the award, “a project for all of Galicia”, reports Ep.

Rueda took advantage of the event to inform about the advances in the design of the new Plan for the canning industry of sea products that the Xunta is preparing. The objective set is to strengthen its competitiveness by 2030, promoting areas such as production, marketing, innovation, employment or the environment. “We are talking about a plan open to the sector and carried out in collaboration with Anfaco-Cecopesca,” said the president of the Xunta, after which he emphasized the commitment of the regional government with the sector. Rueda also expressed the need to continue betting on internationalization. He asserted that sea products carry the mark of Galicia around the world and encouraged them to break the record of 2,400 million euros in exports. Anfaco brings together 250 companies with a combined turnover of 10.2 billion euros and exporting their products to 120 countries. Rueda highlighted the strength of the sector despite the pandemic, the logistics crisis and the economic storm and recalled the importance of canning for the Galician economy, generating 13,200 jobs