Thursday, November 16, 2017
Latin America edition

World-first Panama disease-resistant Cavendish bananas developed
Researchers from Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia, have designed genetically modified Cavendish bananas with resistance to the devastating soil-borne Panama disease.This disease is caused by the fungus Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. cubense Tropical race 4 (TR4) and also known as Fusarium…..

Stefan van Slobbe: “Twelve Strauss machines installed”
Mexico: First asparagus business to pack and sort fully automatically
The Dutchman, Stefan van Slobbe, represents the German asparagus machine manufacturer, Strauss, in North and South America. “Recently the Empaque Rio Colorado (ERC) company bought six Strauss sorting machines and another six Strauss bunchers. This makes them the first Mexican business to transition 100% into…..

Peru: FTA with Australia will boost asparagus exports
Peruvian shipments to Australia have registered a 30% year-on-year growth in the last five years. In 2016 Peruvian exports of asparagus and quinoa amounted to US $6.32 million and US $2.31 million, respectively.In the first three quarters of this year, the country has exported US $5.23 million in asparagus and…..

Supported by VLAM
First Belgian Conference pears to Brazil
On Tuesday, the Conference pear tasting campaign kicked off in São Paolo, Brazil. This is according to the Belgian fruit growers co-operative, BFV. They have begun a countrywide campaign to introduce Brazilian consumers to the Conference pear, grown by BVF growers. In the coming weeks, many more tastings will…..

Chile: Project for the production of new blueberry varieties for undercover farming
The Faculty of Agronomy of the UdeC will develop a project related to the production of new blueberry varieties for undercover farming.”We are thinking about premium quality varieties and we are conducting an adaptation study of a variety that is characterized by good firmness and quality, among other…..

Inequalities between men and women in the banana sector
Various governments across the world are actively trying to help more women participate in the labour market and aim to break the glass ceiling. The position of women in the banana sector is also being examined, although they are also more widely looking at the position of labourers on the plantations.”I’m…..

Frost fans save grape vines from ‘black frosts’
It is easy to see the effect frost fans had against the reported ‘black frost’ in Padthaway, Australia over the previous weekend. The grape vines within the fan coverage area were a healthy green, whilst all around the vines had been blackened by the sub-zero temperatures.Kim Lang from Terra Rossa Viticultural…..

Cravo opens new blueberry trial site in Irapuato, Mexico
Blueberry producer Cravo has recently completed construction of a retractable roof house for blueberries. The house is located on the trade show grounds of the Expo Agro Alimentaria trade show where blueberry trials are currently under way using a variety of conventional tunnel designs.The goal of the house is…..

Peru: Blueberry exports up until September increased by 30.7%
The access of fresh blueberries to new markets through the lifting of sanitary barriers helps increase their exports. According to the Association of Exporters (ADEX), blueberry exports between January and September amounted to slightly more than US $123 million, i.e. 30.7% more than in the same period of…..

Argentina: New technique against the fruit fly in blueberries
Argentina will implement the Sterile Insect Technique, which contemplates demonstration releases of sterile insects that do not generate offspring once they mate with wild females, thus eventually eradicating the fruit fly in the area. The National Service for Agricultural Food Health and Quality (SENASA),…..

Special Avocados

New avocado variety to extend growing season
A far north Queensland farmer hopes to cash in on Australia’s love affair with avocados, with a new crop designed to extend the country’s growing season.This season Leon Collins is planting 10,000 avocado plants at his property in Lakeland, around three hours north of Cairns.It’s believed to be the…..

NZ: AVOCO’s avocado exports growing, despite some market inconsistencies
Dealing with irregular bearing is a problem the New Zealand avocado industry needs to solve, according to AVOCO the nation’s largest marketing company for the fruit.Martin Napper, Export Marketing Executive at Primor Produce, part of the AVOCO venture which owns the AVANZA brand, says at a time when…..

Global Focus Citrus

“The organoleptic properties are incomparable”

Spain: Clementines and oranges from 60 year old trees
This year, the citrus market will present a unique product: clementines and oranges from trees that are over 60 years old and which will be sold directly from the field.”In 1956, my grandfather planted the first Fina clementina trees in the Ebro Delta, in the south of Tarragona. They are huge trees that we…..

California prune crop doubled this year
Prune growers must be twice as pleased with the results of this year’s crop. 2016 saw a mere 50 per cent of the normal crop expectation. 2017 stands to be nearly 100 per cent over the previous year, which is both exciting and a relief for growers and prune handlers needing to take care of their customers and…..

“Large in small” with herb specialities
Strawberry blite, salvia elegans tangerine, variegated creeping thyme: exotic sounding herb names which only a few people can clearly picture. Organic herb nursery Puur Aroma has plenty of space for these and about 80 other specialities. “Large in small,” is how Frank Radder describes the company, which he…..

Yields down from record 2016
California walnuts shipping for Christmas
California’s walnut harvest finished last week just before the rain and the crop is down about 10 – 15 percent depending on where the orchards are located in the state, according to Bill Carriere of Carriere Family Farms. “Harvest went smoothly this year because the weather was pretty nice during that time,”…..

“Top Delicacy” Xiuwen Gui long kiwi fruits
The best Chinese kiwi meets it’s customers
China has a wide variety of kiwi fruits and accounts for about 40% of the global production. However, the Chinese kiwi industry is not fully developed and the quality of fruit from different plantations is uneven. In order to earn respect for Chinese kiwis and justify their high price with high quality, the…..

AU: Cherry season starts with high volumes forecast
One of Australia’s leading cherry producers says consumers will likely see an abundance of cherries this season, with high volumes forecast.CherryHill has orchards in Victoria and New South Wales, and Director Stephen Riseborough says harvesting at some sites has been going for about 10 days, moving onto…..

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Golden and Candystripe beets feature in positive outlook for Texas season
Growers of beets are optimistic about the upcoming Texas season, with an expectation for good tonnage thanks to favorable weather and soil conditions. The season is about to start and should continue well into the middle of the year for the Red beets and a little earlier for the other varieties, including…..

Louisiana sweet potato crops recover from 2016’s rain damage
Coming back after a challenging 2016, Louisiana sweet potatoes are back up to good levels of supply. “We’re focusing right now on making sure we have a 12-month supply for customers and so far it’s looking fine,” says Matt Garber of Iota, La.-based Garber Farms. “Last year, rain caused us to lose half our…..

Late rain improves outlook for South African stonefruit
The Western Cape is thrilled with the rain that has fallen over the past few days, particularly in the Klein-Karoo and the Overberg regions, with amounts upwards of 40mm for towns like Robertson, Riversdal, Heidelberg and even 80mm in Swellendam. The rain was widespread throughout the country, even resulting…..

Photo report
Local, Max Havelaar and organic in Swiss supermarkets
PHOTO REPORT Switzerland is known to be an expensive country. Two years ago the Swiss Central Bank abandoned its fixed exchange rate and suddenly the country’s currency increased in value by 30% compared to the euro. At one branch of Coop City in the centre of Geneva, there seems to be a lot of Swiss products on the…..

Eddy Kreukniet, Exsa Europe:
“Grape market hot now, but future is still unclear”
The grape market is currently hot. Brazilian grapes are selling at extremely high prices for the time of year. “The limited supply is in balance with the high shop prices now, but this will make it quite risky when Namibian and South African grapes start arriving. Experiences from previous years show that when…..

Mugabe reportedly refuses to accept the takeover; South Africa calls it a coup d’état
Zimbabwe: Timing of general’s visit to China raises questions
Life goes on as normal in Zimbabwe, with schools re-opening and people going about their daily business.The latest reports from Zimbabwe are that Robert Mugabe refuses to accept the military takeover. For the moment, he still officially the head of state and there is no martial law. The Southern African…..

Uphill battle for Philippine mango exporters
The Philippines has always been a strong player in Asia as a nation that exports mangoes. It is quite famous for its fresh and dried mangoes. Unfortunately, the country has been hit with some misfortunes that have raised some production issues for the country.According to Robert Chua, the owner of Robbie…..

US importers enjoy healthy Italian chestnut season
The chestnut crop out of Italy has been doing very well this season as a cold winter set up good volume and quality, however dry conditions during summer meant sizing has been a bit off. The season began in early October and will imports into the US will continue into the New Year.”We’ve imported chestnuts…..

Iran adds apples, kiwi, citrus and other ag products to its export promotion policy
The Ministry of Agriculture has listed eight agro products under its export promotion policy and is currently in the process of forming a unified production and supply chains for each.From among the eight products, the apple chain formation is in its final stage.The other products are pistachio, dates,…..

New autonomous on-rail camera system to improve greenhouse management
Following the launch of iUNU’s flagship LUNA greenhouse management platform, the company has now unveiled its latest innovation, the Luna rail network and autonomous camera system.The new tool leverages how machines and computers emulate the human brain and eyes to create images and understanding about the…..

Emirates Airways may launch new route to Maputo, South Africa
Emirates Airways could launch a new route to Maputo, South Africa following an agreement with Mozambique’s national airline LAM.In an interview with the daily newspaper “Noticias”, Mozambique’s consul in Dubai, Jose Bernardo Maneia, explained that the recently signed agreement has led to discussions on how to…..

China’s Banana Industry Alliance letter of intent is signed
On November 6, the Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) company from Shenzhen, organized a forum on China’s high-end banana production and management. Under the motto “New Era, New Agriculture, New Alliance”, GAP put forward an initiative to create China’s Banana Industry Alliance. On the one hand, China’s banana…..

AU: Avocado prices unlikely to fall as crop forecast cut
An early start to the storm season and a lower than expected fruit set means Australia is unlikely to hit its original avocado production target for 2017-18.Avocados Australia CEO John Tyas said, based on the early flowering, there were early forecasts up to 75,000 tonnes of fruit could be harvested throughout…..

Goplasticpallets.com introduce Multitank to improve transport of produce in bulk
Goplasticpallets.com introduce the new Multitank 400 litre IBC — which has been designed to improve the packaging, storing and transporting of food and non-food products in bulk, in a sustainable way.The Multitank’s unique conical design and robust construction means it’s a cost effective reusable packaging…..

Maersk announces ambitious cut to CO2 and revises cold treatment surcharge
In a letter released this week, Maersk head of sustainability strategy John Kornerup Bang called for a concerted effort from shipping to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions. Maersk also announced they will be revising the cost of Cold Treatment Surcharge effective from 1st January 2018.”Raising the ambition…..

World Banana Forum saw a record 300 delegates from 40 countries this year
A record 300 delegates from over 40 countries across all continents registered in the Third Global Conference of the World Banana Forum (WBF) on November 8 and 9, 2017 at the International Conference Centre, Geneva, Switzerland.The meeting was preceded by a meeting on “Gender Equity in the Banana Industry” on…..

Pound tumbles against the Euro due to political uncertainty & inflation rates
The pound has tumbled again against the euro following disappointing inflation rates and political concerns surrounding the government’s stability.It has fallen from €1.121 to €1.115, as disagreements among cabinet members regarding Brexit continue.According to the Times, a leaked memo from Foreign Secretary…..

5 Moscow hypermarkets opened by Lenta
Spar Hungary launches health app
Kenya: Uchumi cuts losses by 40% in 2017 to Sh1.7blnUchumi Supermarket has cut their losses by 40% in the 2017 financial year to Sh1.7bln compared to Sh2.8bln loss in 2016 attributed to improved cost management. Expenses went down by 42% in the period under review from Sh3.6bln in 2016 to Sh2.1bln in 2017…..

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