Staff Reporter
THE regional ministry for Agriculture and Fisheries has increased this year's budget for the commercial promotion of Majorcan food products by 328 percent, over and above the funds which were granted in 2003.

Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries, Margalida Moner, said yesterday that the total of 600'000 euros will be spent on marketing homespun quality food products both in the Balearics and overseas. The budget may double in 2005.

Moner signalled that the objectives of this Plan, which is to be developed between now and 2007, are: to boost production capacity; to secure “social improvements” for agriculturalists and farmers; and to increase the quantity and quality of the products by manufacturing at a competitive price.

Moner further justified the budgetary increase this year by confirming a rise of 13.6 percent in income generated through the sale of locally made quality food products in 2003, measured against figures for the previous year.

Last year, this sector registered income of 52.5 million euros, featuring most prominently the Majorcan sausage sobrasada de Majorca (12.66 million euros) and Mahonés cheese (12.61).

Joan Simonet, Managing director of the development company which will hold the power reins of the Plan, Serveis de Millora Agrària (Semilla), explained that the promotion will be directed at products which have been awarded the quality seal of the Balearics, such as sobrasada, mahonés cheese and local wines.

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