Pinhais, a century-old canning industry, opens the “Conservas Pinhais Factory Tour”, a pioneer Living Museum of the canning industry, aimed at perpetuating the legacy of this living industry, making known the material and immaterial heritage and safeguarding and enhancing its memory. Installed at the Pinhais factory, which in 2020 was classified as a building of Municipal Interest, this is a unique project in the panorama of national and international tourism, which will provide a true immersive experience in all phases of the traditional production method, which it has remained unchanged since 1920. In addition to discovering the factory and its assets, each visitor is invited to wrap their own can, using the techniques of the artisans. The visits also include a tasting and a tour of the store that brings together preserves and collectibles.
Located in the historic building on Avenida Menéres, the project was designed with the aim of promoting the local community and tourism. The “Conservas Pinhais Factory Tour” aims to promote and publicize the uniqueness of a sector of enormous relevance to the national economy, through distinctive aspects such as the maintenance of the artisanal method and century-old building, unique characteristics that give it a historical character.
A journey through time that appeals to all senses
Designed for all age groups, visits to the Living Museum will be guided by cultural mediators, who invite you to discover the history of the canning industry, the roots of Pinhais and all its brands, namely the most international, NURI. Each visit proposes a journey through time, led by one of the most iconic national canned food brands, unique in Portugal that keeps the 100% artisanal production process intact.
With a duration of about 60 minutes, the tour starts at the entrance of the Pinhais building, the o foyer, and visitors are then guided to the company’s former offices and management room. They are then taken to the factory, where they will be able to witness all the 12 centenary steps in the production of a preserve, from the selection of fish at the auction to canning and papering. Designed to appeal to all senses, the tour guide continues with a dive into the history of Pinhais and the canning industry, through the visualization of exclusive digital content; interactive moments, in which visitors are challenged to identify different ingredients, through the smell and palate, and, in the end, participate in the papering process, wrapping the can itself according to the techniques of the company’s artisans.
The tour culminates in one of the building’s most imposing rooms, the Can-Tin Café, a tasting space that welcomes the last moment of the visit: the tasting. In one of the most emblematic areas of the centenary building of Pinhais, visitors have the opportunity to live a true gastronomic experience. The visit ends at the fantastic store, with almost 100 m2, where there is a wide selection of canned pinewoods and NURI, collector’s items and also merchandising and souvenirs allusive to the brands and the tour.
The project boosts cultural and historical tourism, combined with gastronomy
With a particular interest for the local community, even due to the historical impact that Pinhais has in the region, the Museu-Vivo also intends to be a place of visit for foreigners. If on the one hand, it is about showing a unique legacy of a very important industry for Europe, especially during the two World Wars, having a very relevant socio-economic impact, on the other hand, it intends to highlight something unique, authentic, and differentiating that a tourist seeks when visiting new countries. Despite cultural and historical tourism, the project combines gastronomic tourism, the main reason for many tourists to visit the region, and, given the presence of Pinhais in several markets across borders, the interest of the Austrian and North American markets is expected. Spanish, French, German, and Italian.
“The “Conservas Pinhais Factory Tour” is the realization of an old dream of Pinhais, to preserve the legacy of the canning industry for future generations. In this way, we believe that we are contributing to the sustainability and valuation of the industry and providing an absolutely unprecedented experience in a fully functioning Living Museum”, stresses Patrícia Sousa, marketing director at Pinhais.
The official adds that “For these reasons, we believe that this concept of Living-Museum only makes sense to exist at Pinhais, which, in addition to its heritage, architecture, and philosophy, prides itself on maintaining, since 1920, a traditional method that is rare throughout its production, representing the genesis of the sector, as it was 100 years ago”.