A legacy of 5 generations
Ramirez is a model of corporate longevity
A family project that is today the oldest fish cannery in operation in the world. A project of production of the best canned fish. A project that seeks to interpret the signs of each era, without rejecting the teachings of the past. A journey that continues to extend the experience and know-how that are a legacy of 5 generations of the RAMIREZ family.
Every day, since the 19th century, we honour a globally renowned name, which today includes 14 international brands and has a philosophy of its own: the commitment to permanent innovation, which has made us world pioneers in many aspects of canning industrialization, coupled with the strict quality control of our products, which is a condition for a relationship of mutual trust with our customers.
The birthplace of Portuguese canned products
When we became the first cannery to operate in the country, in 1853, we gave Vila Real de Santo António the status of the birthplace of canned fish.
We have since adopted a competitive strategy, coupled with a strong desire to always do more and better.
From Vila Real de Santo António (VRSA) to Matosinhos, with passage through Olhão, Albufeira, Setúbal and Peniche, our industrial and commercial activity is full of remarkable episodes and developed in the upheaval of dozens of revolutions, the fall of empires and of two world wars.
An experience that spans three centuries
In 1853 the reconstruction of Paris began and Turkey declared war on Russia. In a world still full of unknowns but full of hopes, the installation of the first factory started and made us the world’s oldest producer of canned fish.
Since then, our history is told with reference to a galaxy of leaders of great creativity, confidence and vanguardism.
Sebastian, the founder, settled in Vila Real de Santo António, where he created, in 1853, a factory for the production of jute and canned fish.
Manuel, his son, launched the Nossa Senhora da Encarnação in the sea, the first Portuguese steam galleon for catching sardine, which allowed to install new production units in Olhão, Albufeira and Setúbal and strengthen its presence in international markets.
Emílio, grandson of the founder, moved his main factory to Matosinhos, where fish abounded, in the 1940s.
His great-grandson Manuel Guerreiro Ramirez and his sons have operationalized our new industrial unit ‘Ramirez 1853’ and are focused on product and production process innovation.
A differentiated path
With fans since the 19th century, today we are present in the most delicious moments of life – in more than 50 markets.
When globalization was still a mirage and Facebook had no correspondence in the most delusional utopias, we already collected “likes” in the five continents, where we arrived by single-motored airplane, steamboat or jalopy.
An own-brand policy, a clear focus on innovation and differentiation, quality control and food safety, healthy food and consumer convenience, process certification as well as sustainable fishing and social commitment are structuring vectors of a path that allows us to have a diversity of products that are unique in the market.
We produce 55 references. From tuna to sardines, including mackerel, cod, squid, octopus, mussels or anchovy fillets. Among them, there are real ready meals, such as cod with chickpeas, tuna with vegetables or Algarve baked tuna. They are authentic products of guaranteed quality that arouse emotion.
Always pioneers – Innovation is part of our DNA. Decade after decade, our success is due to the permanent capacity to innovate and to reinvent ourselves:
Sebastian Ramirez founded, in Vila Real de Santo António, Algarve, S. Ramirez, which was dedicated to fish salting.
Ramirez, which had already created one of the first canneries in the world, started using innovative autoclaves.
It launched the Nossa Senhora da Encarnação to the sea, the first Portuguese steam galleon for catching sardine.
n partnership with Baader, he created the first machine to remove the head of sardines; it was the first industry in the sector to install a cold chain; it launched the world’s first easy-to-open fish can, with ring pull ends; and it set up its quality control laboratory.
CENUTRA was created – The Ramirez Nutrition Centre.
The innovative TUNACOL was launched. A tuna that helps fighting cholesterol.
Robotization combines precision with tradition. An innovative artificial vision device, which raises the quality control levels of the cans, and the creation of a robotized packaging line and its palletizing allows time gains, promotes new product presentations and enhances performance in one of the most critical management indicators, time.
Beginning of the activity of the most modern and ‘green’ industrial unit of the sector, the ‘Ramirez 1853’ – in Lavra.
In ‘Ramirez 1853’, we harmonize the past, the present and the future every day! ‘Ramirez 1853’ is a cutting-edge technical and technological unit that allows us to innovate in various fields, including the adoption of environmentally friendly processes, and to reinforce our historical export vocation.
With the latest freezing technology, a high-capacity cold chain, X-Ray for can inspection, packaging robotization, rainwater harvesting system and natural light throughout the factory, ‘Ramirez 1853’ has been considered one of the top five industrial units in the agri-food sector worldwide.
The world’s oldest fish cannery in operation, it is, therefore, also the most modern and ecological unit of the sector.
We have been so long connected to the sea that we almost breathe underwater. We are co-founders of the ‘Sea Hyper-cluster’ and we seek, through various synergies, to raise awareness of the Portuguese to the modern ‘Portuguese Sea’, translated by an immense exclusive maritime zone, the largest in Europe, whose wealth, in all its aspects, is a collective good that we must preserve.
This extended maritime space – EEZ plus Platform – makes Portugal the largest country in Europe and benefits from new opportunities for economic and social development, taking into account respect for ecosystems, protection of marine biodiversity and its sustainability.
The use of sustainable fishing is one of our permanent commitments and a structuring vector of our longevity. We are promoting the blue eco-label of the Marine Stewardship Council, which gives sardine purse seine fishing in the Portuguese Sea an environmentally sustainable certificate. We were also the first Portuguese company to obtain approval by Moody’s.
In the production domain, the environment is also a priority. At the ‘Ramirez 1853’ we adopt environmentally-friendly equipment, procedures and techniques that enhance energy efficiency: solar panels and tubes (natural light throughout the plant and offices), biomass power plant; reduction of CO2 emissions; reduction of water consumption; capture and reuse of all rainwater.
Quality Control System
Our Quality Control System is certified by SGS in accordance with standard NP EN ISO 9001: 2008. With this recognition, which reflects our commitment to quality and customer satisfaction, we were the first fish cannery in Portugal to be accredited by this prestigious certification body.
Our reliability, certified by the most demanding international agencies and distribution chains, gives us the world.
- ISO9001/2015 e BRC
- European Food Standards Agency (EFSA) – UK
- Food and Drug Administration (FDA) – USA
- IFS Food
- FOS (Friend of the Sea)
- Canadian and Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) – Canada
- NRCS/SABS – South Africa
- Kosher and Halal
- MSC (Marine Stewardship Council)
An absolute respect for hygiene-sanitary specifications have motivated us to create, for more than 40 years, our own quality control laboratories, which allow us to comply with strict production criteria required in the more demanding markets, such as Canada and South Africa, making it necessary to use raw materials of quality, to ensure the conformity of the sterilization, the contents of the cans, the crimping and the net weight.
Source of informations and images: ramirez.pt