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Good prospects for South African lychee season

Good prospects for South African lychee season

Harvesting will begin mid to late November for the new season South African lychees. Derek Donkin, CEO of Subtrop said it is a bit early to accurately predict how the season would go but it is looking better than last year.

“In some areas we had a very poor crop last year, but those areas are looking better this year.”

Last year South Africa produced around 4,500 MT, this is expected to be around 5,500 MT.

South Africa exports around 50% of the lychees, mostly to the European market, the other 50% goes to the domestic market.

Publication date: 10/30/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

UNFI growth prospects looking good, analysts say

United Natural Foods, Inc., is positioned for continued strong growth, especially as it expands the perishables offerings from Tony’s Fine Foods beyond the West Coast while simultaneously reducing warehouse and distribution costs, analysts said Wednesday, a day after UNFI’s annual analyst meeting.

UNFI, based in Providence, R.I., acquired Tony’s Fine Foods, West Sacramento, Calif., last May. The Tony’s offering encompasses specialty cheeses, baked goods, deli, packaged proteins, seafood and prepared foods.

Analysts said UNFI’s effort to expand Tony’s offerings is part of the company’s new “building out the store” strategy — aspiring to have the top share in each category it serves.

“This is a change from the past, where the focus was on acquiring new customers,” Karen Short, an analyst with Deutsche Bank, New York, pointed out. “There could be a significant opportunity if UNFI can convince existing customers of its natural and organic products [who purchase ethnic and gourmet products from other sources] to purchase these specialty categories from UNFI because it could lower the customers’ overall product costs [by consolidating purchases] without sacrificing service.”

The near-term strategy involves rolling out the Tony’s model to Denver; Racine, Wis., which serves Chicago; and UNFI’s Hudson Valley facility in Upstate New York, which serves New York City, with the goal of boosting the company’s 1.5% share of the ethnic/gourmet categories, Short said.

The three facilities, along with Tony’s West Coast operation, will serve as main freight consolidation points where the Tony’s merchandise can flow to the rest of the country, Short said.

According to Andrew Wolf, managing director for BB&T Capital Markets, Boston, rolling out the Tony’s products will require UNFI to secure a major new customer in each region — a process that should take one to five months, he added.

UNFI is also seeking to reduce costs, the analysts said. According to Kelly Bania, an analyst with BMO Capital Markets, New York, “UNFI is well positioned to deliver operating margin upside relative to expectations as investments in technology and efficiency initiatives gain critical mass in coming years.

“Importantly, UNFI’s savings from its warehouse management system implementation could accelerate in coming years as only three of its distribution centers are currently on WMS,” Bania said. The company expects WMS to be implemented at a total of nine facilities by next October, with the system operating at all 18 facilities by the end of fiscal 2017, she pointed out.

“While not all cost savings will fall to the bottom line and consolidated operating margin expansion will prove more difficult in coming years as UNFI integrates lower-margin Tony’s, an outlook for a more accelerated pace of implementation could result in more meaningful cost savings in coming years,” Bania added.

Wolf said UNFI “made a convincing case” for its cost-cutting prospects, including plans to lower its cost structure and increase its relevance with customers through use of technology — for example, backhauling to improve logistics and engineered labor standards to improve warehouse operations.

In addition, the company is implementing programs like iUNFI, a mobile order-entry system that has enabled customers to improve their fill rates by 0.7%; and “UNFI arrive,” which helps customers track deliveries more carefully to do a better job of planning in-store labor, Wolf pointed out.

Supermarket News

Italy: Good prospects for Jingold kiwis despite Russian ban

Italy: Good prospects for Jingold kiwis despite Russian ban

“It is still unknown how the Russian ban will affect the kiwi season. We believe the direct effects will be rather limited, as Russia is not one of our main markets, but we will have to deal with the increased competition from other producer countries like for example Greece. This is why we will work to strengthen the brand and guarantee constant high quality to our clients,” refer the managers of the KiwiGold consortium, owner of the Jingold brand.


The Jingold kiwi campaign will start in the next few days. The suitable moment to harvest is established by the technical managers of the Consortium and it coincides with the moment when the kiwis reach the perfect organoleptic qualities.


“Volumes are similar to last year – many new orchards are now starting to produce but, at the same time, production has dropped in other areas in Southern Italy due to the mild temperatures of last winter.”


The quantities of green Hayward kiwis should increase considerably. “We will select high-quality green kiwis to complete our range together with golden kiwis.”


The main destination market is the European one, where the produce is distributed by groups like Edeka, Corte Ingles, Coop and Tesco. The Asian market is the one growing the most. 

“In Far East countries like China, Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore, Jingold is a recognised brand by both operators and consumers as we have been on the market for a few years.”


“The season is looking good – there is a lot of interest from our usual clients and prospects are good.”


Contacts:
Jingold spa
Piazzale Caduti del Lavoro, 200
47522 Cesena (FC)
Tel.: (+39) 0547 317476
Fax: (+39) 0547 417514
Email: [email protected]
Web: www.jingold.it

Publication date: 10/13/2014


FreshPlaza.com

Evolutionary tools improve prospects for sustainable development

Solving societal challenges in food security, emerging diseases and biodiversity loss will require evolutionary thinking in order to be effective in the long run. Inattention to this will only lead to greater challenges such as short-lived medicines and agricultural treatments, problems that may ultimately hinder sustainable development, argues a new study published online today in Science Express, led by University of California, Davis and the Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate at the University of Copenhagen.

For the first time, scientists have reviewed progress in addressing a broad set of challenges in agriculture, medicine and environmental management using evolutionary approaches, approaches that consider species’ evolutionary histories and the likelihood of rapid evolutionary adaptation to human activities.

The study finds an urgent need for better implementation of these approaches, for example in managing the use of antibiotics and pesticides in order to reduce the escalating problem of resistance evolution. Furthermore, current efforts are found insufficient to reduce the accumulating costs from chronic disease and biodiversity loss, two challenges ultimately caused by exposure to food and environments to which people and threatened wildlife are poorly adapted.

The study also assessed the potential for less commonly implemented strategies including gene therapies to treat human disease, the breeding of “climate change proof” crop varieties, such as flood tolerant rice, and translocating exotic strains for ecological restoration and forestry that will be better adapted to near-future conditions.

“Applying evolutionary biology has tremendous potential, because it takes into account how unwanted pests or pathogens may adapt rapidly to our interventions and how highly valued species including humans on the other hand are often very slow to adapt to changing environments through evolution. Not considering such aspects may result in outcomes opposite of those desired, making the pests more resistant to our actions, humans more exposed to diseases and vulnerable species less able to cope with new conditions,” says biologist Peter Søgaard Jørgensen, one of the lead-authors and PhD from the Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate at the University of Copenhagen.

“To succeed in avoiding such unwanted outcomes however, we need to learn from successes and progress in all fields using evolutionary biology as a tool. Currently there is no such coordination, says Scott P. Carroll, lead-author and biologist at the University of California Davis and Director of the Institute for Contemporary Evolution. He continues:

“A particular worry is that the unaddressed need for management of evolution that spans multiple sectors will lead to the spread of new infectious diseases and antimicrobial resistance genes between natural, human health and agricultural systems. It is clear that we need to strengthen evolutionary biology linkages across nature conservation, food production and human health and develop a shared strategy.”

Many evolutionary solutions are already at hand

Whereas we might have to wait for new solutions from human gene therapy, genetic engineering of crops and development of new medicines to replace old ones, many innovative solutions based on applying evolutionary biology already exist.

For example, farmers in the United States and Australia have used planting of pest-friendly refuges to delay evolution of insect resistance to genetically engineered corn and cotton. These genetically modified crops kill certain pests, but without refuges the pests quickly adapt. Providing refuges of conventional plants has been especially effective for suppressing resistance in the pink bollworm, an invasive pest of cotton.

However, Peter Jørgensen also cautions: “In many cases, decision makers must pay more attention to assuring that long-term benefits of applying these solutions do not come at a short-term cost for some individuals, for example from yield loss due to localised effects of pests in a particular year. By encouraging cost sharing, local communities and governments play a crucial role in ensuring that everybody gains from the benefits of using evolutionary biology to realise the long-term goals of sustainable development such as increasing food security, protecting biodiversity and improving human health and well-being.”

The article is published today in Science Express. Peter Jørgensen will also present the research at the upcoming Sustainability Science Congress in Copenhagen from October 22nd to 24th.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Faculty of Science – University of Copenhagen. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Agriculture and Food News — ScienceDaily

Evolutionary tools improve prospects for sustainable development

Solving societal challenges in food security, emerging diseases and biodiversity loss will require evolutionary thinking in order to be effective in the long run. Inattention to this will only lead to greater challenges such as short-lived medicines and agricultural treatments, problems that may ultimately hinder sustainable development, argues a new study published online today in Science Express, led by University of California, Davis and the Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate at the University of Copenhagen.

For the first time, scientists have reviewed progress in addressing a broad set of challenges in agriculture, medicine and environmental management using evolutionary approaches, approaches that consider species’ evolutionary histories and the likelihood of rapid evolutionary adaptation to human activities.

The study finds an urgent need for better implementation of these approaches, for example in managing the use of antibiotics and pesticides in order to reduce the escalating problem of resistance evolution. Furthermore, current efforts are found insufficient to reduce the accumulating costs from chronic disease and biodiversity loss, two challenges ultimately caused by exposure to food and environments to which people and threatened wildlife are poorly adapted.

The study also assessed the potential for less commonly implemented strategies including gene therapies to treat human disease, the breeding of “climate change proof” crop varieties, such as flood tolerant rice, and translocating exotic strains for ecological restoration and forestry that will be better adapted to near-future conditions.

“Applying evolutionary biology has tremendous potential, because it takes into account how unwanted pests or pathogens may adapt rapidly to our interventions and how highly valued species including humans on the other hand are often very slow to adapt to changing environments through evolution. Not considering such aspects may result in outcomes opposite of those desired, making the pests more resistant to our actions, humans more exposed to diseases and vulnerable species less able to cope with new conditions,” says biologist Peter Søgaard Jørgensen, one of the lead-authors and PhD from the Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate at the University of Copenhagen.

“To succeed in avoiding such unwanted outcomes however, we need to learn from successes and progress in all fields using evolutionary biology as a tool. Currently there is no such coordination, says Scott P. Carroll, lead-author and biologist at the University of California Davis and Director of the Institute for Contemporary Evolution. He continues:

“A particular worry is that the unaddressed need for management of evolution that spans multiple sectors will lead to the spread of new infectious diseases and antimicrobial resistance genes between natural, human health and agricultural systems. It is clear that we need to strengthen evolutionary biology linkages across nature conservation, food production and human health and develop a shared strategy.”

Many evolutionary solutions are already at hand

Whereas we might have to wait for new solutions from human gene therapy, genetic engineering of crops and development of new medicines to replace old ones, many innovative solutions based on applying evolutionary biology already exist.

For example, farmers in the United States and Australia have used planting of pest-friendly refuges to delay evolution of insect resistance to genetically engineered corn and cotton. These genetically modified crops kill certain pests, but without refuges the pests quickly adapt. Providing refuges of conventional plants has been especially effective for suppressing resistance in the pink bollworm, an invasive pest of cotton.

However, Peter Jørgensen also cautions: “In many cases, decision makers must pay more attention to assuring that long-term benefits of applying these solutions do not come at a short-term cost for some individuals, for example from yield loss due to localised effects of pests in a particular year. By encouraging cost sharing, local communities and governments play a crucial role in ensuring that everybody gains from the benefits of using evolutionary biology to realise the long-term goals of sustainable development such as increasing food security, protecting biodiversity and improving human health and well-being.”

The article is published today in Science Express. Peter Jørgensen will also present the research at the upcoming Sustainability Science Congress in Copenhagen from October 22nd to 24th.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Faculty of Science – University of Copenhagen. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Agriculture and Food News — ScienceDaily

PCA Jury Being Picked Today From 52 Remaining Prospects

After three days of work to select a jury for the criminal trial of three former Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) executives, the final 52 prospective jurors will return this morning for “the striking process.”

U.S. District Court Judge W. Louis Sands hopes to have a 12-member jury and four alternates selected today so the trial can get underway on Friday.

During the past three days, Sands has excused some prospective jurors based on how some answered his questions during private interview sessions and others who were able to persuade him that they could not handle, for either personal or financial reasons, serving on a jury for a trial that could last eight weeks or more. Those cuts took the number of prospects down to the 52 who will return Thursday for a fourth day in the selection process.

Once empaneled, the jury will decide whether former PCA chief executive Stewart Parnell, his peanut broker brother Michael Parnell, and former quality control manager Mary Wilkerson are guilty or not on felony charges involving conspiracy and fraud, along with obstruction of justice and illegal shipping of misbranded and adulterated peanut butter in interstate commerce.

Also on Wednesday, Sands issued two written orders that went against defense motions in the case. In the first, he put his bench ruling into writing, refusing to dismiss charges against Wilkerson or to give her a trial separate from the Parnells, as she had requested.

Sands said he had already granted a two-week delay in the start of the trial “in an abundance of caution” to make up for certain documents being late in getting to the defense from the prosecution. He called dismissing the charges against her “an extreme sanction,” and he said that he was not granting Wilkerson a separate trial because no memorandum of law was included for that part of her motion.

The judge also struck down a motion from Stewart Parnell’s attorneys requesting that the court take “judicial notice” of the fact that Salmonella is injurious to human health. Parnell’s defense team wanted such a judicial notice to cut down on witness testimony about Salmonella-related illnesses.

All the charges stem from an investigation into the 2008-09 nationwide Salmonella outbreak that sickened more than 700 people and resulted in nine deaths. The source of the outbreak was traced to PCA’s Blakely, GA, peanut processing plant.

The deadly outbreak led to the largest food recall based on a single ingredient in U.S history. Almost 4,000 products thought to contain PCA peanut butter or peanut paste were subsequently recalled by hundreds of U.S. food companies.

(Editor’s note: Dallas Carter was the courtroom observer for Food Safety News and assisted in compiling this report.)

Food Safety News

PCA Jury Being Picked Today From 52 Remaining Prospects

After three days of work to select a jury for the criminal trial of three former Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) executives, the final 52 prospective jurors will return this morning for “the striking process.”

U.S. District Court Judge W. Louis Sands hopes to have a 12-member jury and four alternates selected today so the trial can get underway on Friday.

During the past three days, Sands has excused some prospective jurors based on how some answered his questions during private interview sessions and others who were able to persuade him that they could not handle, for either personal or financial reasons, serving on a jury for a trial that could last eight weeks or more. Those cuts took the number of prospects down to the 52 who will return Thursday for a fourth day in the selection process.

Once empaneled, the jury will decide whether former PCA chief executive Stewart Parnell, his peanut broker brother Michael Parnell, and former quality control manager Mary Wilkerson are guilty or not on felony charges involving conspiracy and fraud, along with obstruction of justice and illegal shipping of misbranded and adulterated peanut butter in interstate commerce.

Also on Wednesday, Sands issued two written orders that went against defense motions in the case. In the first, he put his bench ruling into writing, refusing to dismiss charges against Wilkerson or to give her a trial separate from the Parnells, as she had requested.

Sands said he had already granted a two-week delay in the start of the trial “in an abundance of caution” to make up for certain documents being late in getting to the defense from the prosecution. He called dismissing the charges against her “an extreme sanction,” and he said that he was not granting Wilkerson a separate trial because no memorandum of law was included for that part of her motion.

The judge also struck down a motion from Stewart Parnell’s attorneys requesting that the court take “judicial notice” of the fact that Salmonella is injurious to human health. Parnell’s defense team wanted such a judicial notice to cut down on witness testimony about Salmonella-related illnesses.

All the charges stem from an investigation into the 2008-09 nationwide Salmonella outbreak that sickened more than 700 people and resulted in nine deaths. The source of the outbreak was traced to PCA’s Blakely, GA, peanut processing plant.

The deadly outbreak led to the largest food recall based on a single ingredient in U.S history. Almost 4,000 products thought to contain PCA peanut butter or peanut paste were subsequently recalled by hundreds of U.S. food companies.

(Editor’s note: Dallas Carter was the courtroom observer for Food Safety News and assisted in compiling this report.)

Food Safety News

PCA Jury Being Picked Today From 52 Remaining Prospects

After three days of work to select a jury for the criminal trial of three former Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) executives, the final 52 prospective jurors will return this morning for “the striking process.”

U.S. District Court Judge W. Louis Sands hopes to have a 12-member jury and four alternates selected today so the trial can get underway on Friday.

During the past three days, Sands has excused some prospective jurors based on how some answered his questions during private interview sessions and others who were able to persuade him that they could not handle, for either personal or financial reasons, serving on a jury for a trial that could last eight weeks or more. Those cuts took the number of prospects down to the 52 who will return Thursday for a fourth day in the selection process.

Once empaneled, the jury will decide whether former PCA chief executive Stewart Parnell, his peanut broker brother Michael Parnell, and former quality control manager Mary Wilkerson are guilty or not on felony charges involving conspiracy and fraud, along with obstruction of justice and illegal shipping of misbranded and adulterated peanut butter in interstate commerce.

Also on Wednesday, Sands issued two written orders that went against defense motions in the case. In the first, he put his bench ruling into writing, refusing to dismiss charges against Wilkerson or to give her a trial separate from the Parnells, as she had requested.

Sands said he had already granted a two-week delay in the start of the trial “in an abundance of caution” to make up for certain documents being late in getting to the defense from the prosecution. He called dismissing the charges against her “an extreme sanction,” and he said that he was not granting Wilkerson a separate trial because no memorandum of law was included for that part of her motion.

The judge also struck down a motion from Stewart Parnell’s attorneys requesting that the court take “judicial notice” of the fact that Salmonella is injurious to human health. Parnell’s defense team wanted such a judicial notice to cut down on witness testimony about Salmonella-related illnesses.

All the charges stem from an investigation into the 2008-09 nationwide Salmonella outbreak that sickened more than 700 people and resulted in nine deaths. The source of the outbreak was traced to PCA’s Blakely, GA, peanut processing plant.

The deadly outbreak led to the largest food recall based on a single ingredient in U.S history. Almost 4,000 products thought to contain PCA peanut butter or peanut paste were subsequently recalled by hundreds of U.S. food companies.

(Editor’s note: Dallas Carter was the courtroom observer for Food Safety News and assisted in compiling this report.)

Food Safety News

PCA Jury Being Picked Today From 52 Remaining Prospects

After three days of work to select a jury for the criminal trial of three former Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) executives, the final 52 prospective jurors will return this morning for “the striking process.”

U.S. District Court Judge W. Louis Sands hopes to have a 12-member jury and four alternates selected today so the trial can get underway on Friday.

During the past three days, Sands has excused some prospective jurors based on how some answered his questions during private interview sessions and others who were able to persuade him that they could not handle, for either personal or financial reasons, serving on a jury for a trial that could last eight weeks or more. Those cuts took the number of prospects down to the 52 who will return Thursday for a fourth day in the selection process.

Once empaneled, the jury will decide whether former PCA chief executive Stewart Parnell, his peanut broker brother Michael Parnell, and former quality control manager Mary Wilkerson are guilty or not on felony charges involving conspiracy and fraud, along with obstruction of justice and illegal shipping of misbranded and adulterated peanut butter in interstate commerce.

Also on Wednesday, Sands issued two written orders that went against defense motions in the case. In the first, he put his bench ruling into writing, refusing to dismiss charges against Wilkerson or to give her a trial separate from the Parnells, as she had requested.

Sands said he had already granted a two-week delay in the start of the trial “in an abundance of caution” to make up for certain documents being late in getting to the defense from the prosecution. He called dismissing the charges against her “an extreme sanction,” and he said that he was not granting Wilkerson a separate trial because no memorandum of law was included for that part of her motion.

The judge also struck down a motion from Stewart Parnell’s attorneys requesting that the court take “judicial notice” of the fact that Salmonella is injurious to human health. Parnell’s defense team wanted such a judicial notice to cut down on witness testimony about Salmonella-related illnesses.

All the charges stem from an investigation into the 2008-09 nationwide Salmonella outbreak that sickened more than 700 people and resulted in nine deaths. The source of the outbreak was traced to PCA’s Blakely, GA, peanut processing plant.

The deadly outbreak led to the largest food recall based on a single ingredient in U.S history. Almost 4,000 products thought to contain PCA peanut butter or peanut paste were subsequently recalled by hundreds of U.S. food companies.

(Editor’s note: Dallas Carter was the courtroom observer for Food Safety News and assisted in compiling this report.)

Food Safety News

PCA Jury Being Picked Today From 52 Remaining Prospects

After three days of work to select a jury for the criminal trial of three former Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) executives, the final 52 prospective jurors will return this morning for “the striking process.”

U.S. District Court Judge W. Louis Sands hopes to have a 12-member jury and four alternates selected today so the trial can get underway on Friday.

During the past three days, Sands has excused some prospective jurors based on how some answered his questions during private interview sessions and others who were able to persuade him that they could not handle, for either personal or financial reasons, serving on a jury for a trial that could last eight weeks or more. Those cuts took the number of prospects down to the 52 who will return Thursday for a fourth day in the selection process.

Once empaneled, the jury will decide whether former PCA chief executive Stewart Parnell, his peanut broker brother Michael Parnell, and former quality control manager Mary Wilkerson are guilty or not on felony charges involving conspiracy and fraud, along with obstruction of justice and illegal shipping of misbranded and adulterated peanut butter in interstate commerce.

Also on Wednesday, Sands issued two written orders that went against defense motions in the case. In the first, he put his bench ruling into writing, refusing to dismiss charges against Wilkerson or to give her a trial separate from the Parnells, as she had requested.

Sands said he had already granted a two-week delay in the start of the trial “in an abundance of caution” to make up for certain documents being late in getting to the defense from the prosecution. He called dismissing the charges against her “an extreme sanction,” and he said that he was not granting Wilkerson a separate trial because no memorandum of law was included for that part of her motion.

The judge also struck down a motion from Stewart Parnell’s attorneys requesting that the court take “judicial notice” of the fact that Salmonella is injurious to human health. Parnell’s defense team wanted such a judicial notice to cut down on witness testimony about Salmonella-related illnesses.

All the charges stem from an investigation into the 2008-09 nationwide Salmonella outbreak that sickened more than 700 people and resulted in nine deaths. The source of the outbreak was traced to PCA’s Blakely, GA, peanut processing plant.

The deadly outbreak led to the largest food recall based on a single ingredient in U.S history. Almost 4,000 products thought to contain PCA peanut butter or peanut paste were subsequently recalled by hundreds of U.S. food companies.

(Editor’s note: Dallas Carter was the courtroom observer for Food Safety News and assisted in compiling this report.)

Food Safety News

Spain: Good prospects for this year’s table grape campaign

Spain: Good prospects for this year’s table grape campaign

The table grape campaign in Vinalopó, Alicante, is currently in full swing with the early white seeded variety Victoria and the white seedless Superior, but with lower volumes compared to last year’s bumper crop.

“This week we will start working with the red seeded Red Globe variety and soon we will have Italy, a white seeded variety,” explains Eduardo Costa, sales manager of the young company IMG. “From September, we will have Crimson white seedless grapes and red seedless Autumn Royal.” It is a campaign with fewer kilos, but with better quality and larger calibres.

“The quality of these table grapes is truly satisfactory this year. Furthermore, as a result of the dry weather and the arrival of high temperatures, the ripening has accelerated and the fruit reaches high Brix levels, with a yellowing of the skin that indicates that the fruit is at its best for consumption,” he affirms.

Egypt and Chile’s off-season table grape campaign lasted longer than usual and the first batches of grapes did not reach high prices despite the low volumes available; however, according to Eduardo, “as imports have finished, the market has become hungry for Spanish grapes and prices remain stable despite the increase in supply. All indications are that, unlike stonefruit, table grape prices will not drop.”

IMG mainly ships its seeded grapes to supermarket chains in Portugal, but it also exports them to the Netherlands, Scandinavia and Germany. “Southern Europe and the Mediterranean continue to prefer grapes with seeds, but consumer trends are increasingly moving towards seedless grapes,” says Eduardo. “I think seeded grapes could even disappear in less the ten years.”

The Valencian company is currently also distributing peaches, nectarines, apricots and flat peaches, which, despite their higher quality this year, have failed to increase in price due to oversupply.

“Since the start of IMG’s operations in March we have been very pleased with the progress and how sales are going, as well as with the addition of new clients who have placed their trust in us,” concludes Eduardo Costa.

For more information:
Eduardo Costa
IMG International Med Growers S.l.
T: +34 627958600
Email: [email protected]

Publication date: 7/23/2014


FreshPlaza.com

Spain: Lemon harvest prospects reduced to 860,000 tonnes

Spain: Lemon harvest prospects reduced to 860,000 tonnes

According to the Lemon and Grapefruit Interprofessional Association (AILIMPO), the Spanish lemon campaign has been positive up until January, despite a rocky start caused by excess heat and smaller calibres.

“These problems were already sorted and I believe we can rate the Fino lemon campaign as successful, with moderately good prospects. Prices have been quite satisfactory for growers and the industry is processing larger volumes than usual. Exports are going well, as there were no accumulated stocks in Argentina or South Africa and the Spanish produce has dominated,” explains José Antonio García, director of AILIMPO.

As for production volumes, of the 910,000 tonnes originally expected, it appears only 860,000 tonnes will be harvested. “We have reduced our prospects for September’s harvest due to issues with calibres,” states José Antonio García. Of that total, around 130,000 tonnes will be distributed in the domestic market, while approximately 500,000 tonnes will be exported and between 220,000 and 240,000 will go to the processing industry.

93% of those exports will be shipped to the EU, with Germany as the main destination, followed by France and the UK. Outside the EU, there is a long list of clients in countries such as Switzerland, Algeria, Brazil, Hong Kong or Canada, although these are much smaller volumes.

The main production areas in Spain are Murcia (40%) and Alicante (35%); the remaining 25% is supplied by Almeria and Malaga.

Regarding prices, José Antonio García says that “they have been significantly higher than the production costs during the past two campaigns. Fino lemons stand at 0.27 to 0.30 Euro/kilo at origin, with production costs of between 0.17 and 0.19 Euro/kilo. We have found some stability and we hope everything continues this way.” 

The situation, however, is not as good for grapefruit, with negative results and low levels of demand. While Spain dominates the lemon market, the country is a very small grapefruit supplier, standing behind producers such as Israel, Turkey and Florida. Spain expects to harvest 52,000 tonnes this season.

Publication date: 2/27/2014


FreshPlaza.com

Kroger’s Prospects Hinge on Price Leadership

It’s been as predictable as fall following summer.

Kroger’s long run of financial success in recent years, especially its record string of quarters with positive identical-sales growth, is a phenomenon that many observers have come to count on.

Each year, when financial analysts gather in SN’s New York offices for our annual roundtable, they remark on Kroger’s strong positioning. This year was no different.

“There’s no question Kroger has found the holy grail — that delicate balance between sales and margins,” said Gary Giblen, managing director of GMG Capital.

You can read the latest roundtable discussion here.

There were plenty more good things said about Kroger by the analysts, including about its strong ability to adjust selection to demand in each market.

However, the roundtable participants also pointed to some potential clouds on the horizon, and it’s worth taking a closer look. In particular, they noted Kroger’s strong price position could be vulnerable if competitors show continued seriousness about investing more in price.

Here’s an excerpt from that part of the conversation:

• Giblen: “What if Safeway were to take the money it got from Canada and put it into some real pricing? That could alter the environment for Kroger.”

• Andrew Wolf (managing director, BB&T Capital Markets): “That is the risk because that’s what’s happening at Delhaize and Ahold.”

• Scott Mushkin (managing director, Wolfe Research): “But Supervalu is doing it too. … We have everybody investing in price.”

• Wolf: “[Kroger’s] big point of differentiation has been that it’s only 10% above Wal-Mart while the next guy is 20% higher. However, if that next guy is only 12% higher and he’s right down the street from you, Kroger could have a problem.”


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Worrying about price differentials may not be keeping Kroger executives up at night. One analyst pointed out that Kroger probably spends the majority of its time thinking about privately held competitors, like Hy-Vee, H-E-B and Wegmans, over Wal-Mart.

But no company, not even Kroger, is assured its leadership position indefinitely.

Here’s what Giblen told me after the roundtable: “Kroger has to make sure it isn’t complacent. If they see Safeway or Supervalu closing a gap, they’ll need to reopen it.”

Price leadership is crucial to what produced Kroger’s success over the past few years. This bears close watching because the scenarios discussed here are possible.

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Supermarket News

Spain: Table grape harvest prospects 16% greater than in 2012

Spain: Table grape harvest prospects 16% greater than in 2012

146,121 tonnes of table grapes are estimated to be harvested this year; 16% more than in 2012, according to data provided by the Agricultural Statistics Service in partnership with the Local Agricultural Offices, as reported by the Council of Agriculture.

The general director of Agrifood Industry and Agricultural Training, Ángel García Lidón, highlighted that “optimal weather conditions for the crop, both during the flowering and the settling stage, have resulted in greater production volumes and grapes of a good size.”


The greatest increase in production volumes has been registered in the Apirena and Red Gobe varieties (26% and 13% respectively).

The increase of the Apirena varieties is due to expansions in the acreage and the entry into production of new plantations.


For the Napoleon and Dominga varieties, production volumes will remain the same this year, while the Italia variety falls by 18%, due to a reduction in the acreage.

In 2012, the region was the largest table grape producer, with 125,910 tonnes, which accounts for 53% of the national production, followed by the province of Alicante, with 34% and Andalusia, with 7%.

The total acreage of the region is of 5,493 hectares, which concentrate mainly in the Valley of Guagalentín (64%) and Vega del Segura (32%). There are also plantations in the Altiplano (4%) and to a lesser extent, in Campo de Cartagena.

Murcia is the second Region with the largest table grape acreage (36%), followed by the Region of Valencia (44%).

The Region of Murcia’s table grape exports reached an approximate value of 127 million Euro in 2012 and represented around 62% of Spain’s total. 

Last year, Murcia exported a total of 69,572 tonnes, which represents 55% of its total production.

Murcia’s main clients (95%) were the countries of the European Union. The United Kingdom, Germany and the Netherlands received 84% of those exports. The rest went to countries in Africa, Asia and America.

Source: Carm

Publication date: 7/10/2013


FreshPlaza.com

Good prospects for Chilean fruit in South East Asia

Good prospects for Chilean fruit in South East Asia

The Chilean Fruit Company (CCF), born from the union of three great producers with a total of 350-400 hectares, annually produces around 4,000 tonnes of kiwis, 1,500 tonnes of apples and 175 tonnes of cherries. It has the GlobalGAP certification in all its plantations and sells the fruit under the brand CCF.

“Almost 100% of our cherry shipments go to Asian markets such as China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. This is also the case with apples, as we produce lots of Fuji that is shipped mainly to Taiwan. When it comes to kiwis, we do make some shipments to Europe; through Rotterdam it arrives mainly to Germany, Italy and some to England,” explains Nicolás Portaluppi, general manager of the firm.

At the moment the company is harvesting kiwis and apple. Half of the kiwi production will be stored in chambers until November, when the cherry production starts.

According to Portaluppi, in Europe, despite the recession, the demand for kiwi has not fallen and prices are similar to last year, mainly because Italy has a lower stock and its imports started earlier. Additionally, Latin America, Asia and the United States are registering slightly better prices than last year.


Next year, the firm expects to increase its production of kiwis, introducing yellow kiwis, and to double its apple production, growing in Royal Gala and red varieties, such as the Red Chief, of which they make shipments mostly to the Indian market.

In terms of markets, Asia is where the company has the better prospects for growth. “Later this month I will visit South East Asia to meet with agents in Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia along with ProChile. We are very interested in that area, as well as India, as I believe both will gain strength in the coming years,” concludes Nicolás Portaluppi.

For more information:
Nicolás Portaluppi
Compañía Chilena de la Fruta S.A
General Manager
Tel: 9-7452473
(+56 75) 543362
[email protected]
http://www.ccfruta.com/

Publication date: 7/3/2013


FreshPlaza.com