Tag: Zespri

They’re selling our fruit here

I travel half way around the world, and what’s the first thing I see upon entering a supermarket in Rotterdam?

This was during the industry tour mentioned a blog post or so back – so I was in the company of other IFPS members from countries such as the US, Canada, South Africa, and Chile.  They were extremely envious and wanted to know how I had managed to get the display put there just for the benefit of the tour!  Much as I would like to think I have that much influence in the global produce industry, I had to come clean and admit that it was all Zespri’s doing.  This image is a wonderful example of New Zealand’s success in the international produce industry.

I have discussed Zespri in previous posts, and say what you like about them (and Turners & Growers have had a lot to say) regarding the single desk position they hold over New Zealand’s kiwifruit exports, but you cannot deny that Zespri is extremely effective at selling kiwifruit for value added prices in the very competitive international market.

Question is, can Zespri’s success be emulated in other New Zealand produce categories without single desk structures and government regulations?

China Has Plans. Big Plans!

Mention the concepts of ‘threat’ and ‘opportunity’ to anyone remotely connected with produce industry strategy in this country and China gets a mention.  Both Chinas actually.  Whilst Potatoes New Zealand is busy trying to figure out how to optimise its fledgling export relationship with Taiwan and Summerfruit New Zealand is keen to export more cherries into that part of the world,  the rest of the industry is looking with mixed feelings at Mainland China.  How much of a threat will they be to our domestic industry?  Are we really about to be flooded with Chinese imports?  China is already the largest apple producer in the world.  Will we stand a chance in the international markets once China gets serious about apple exports?  And what about all this counterfeit Zespri kiwifruit which can be found in China with monotonous regularity?

Do I have any answers here?  Of course, not! But may I suggest that in order to understand China better, we need to spend a bit of time on critical evaluation – and that involves learning about Chinese mindsets and strategies.  This article about the Chinese commodities strategy in Africa entitled “The Next Empire”   is a good place to start.  I would pay particular attention to the section about Mozambique allowing 3,000 Chinese settlers in to buy and farm the land.

The article provides a wider historic perspective and is certainly not solely focused on horticulture – but neither are the Chinese.