Alcafruit’s new phase

With a strategic plan underway, new investments in both field and warehouse, and consolidating its overseas markets, the Sevillian cooperative is looking to the future with new impetus

Fruit Today talked to the cooperative’s manager, Pepe Palmer, who gave details on these and other questions.

What sorts of investments have been made?

At the time, we decided that it was important to increase our field area and we have purchased a farm that we are using as an experimental centre, and for which we have chosen varieties such as Nadorcott and Tango.

In the warehouse, we have changed the initial distribution of the production to improve the production flows. We have a new, modern calibrator that allows us to be more productive. Additionally, we have readapted our old calibrator to be able to prepare persimmons and stone fruit. And lastly, we have extended and improved the cold storage rooms by changing the cooling system.

Another of our future challenges is biological production. Therefore, we have incorporated a certified centre in order to be able to make a strong commitment to this production line, which is shared with zero waste production.

What are the cooperative’s main productions?

Eating oranges in virtually all their varieties; mandarins as an emerging product and with which we expect to reach one and a half million kilos, with varieties such as Tango and Nadorcott.

In stone fruit, plums stand out, followed by peaches, flat peaches, etc. We have a production of around 800,000 kilos of persimmons which, over the next few years, when the trees reach full production will produce 2.5 million kilos.

Altogether, the overall volume is around 25 million kilos, which will easily pass the 30 million mark over the next few campaigns.

Which markets interest Alcafruit most?

Our geographical location does not allow us to be as competitive as if we were further north. Therefore, we have made a great effort with the overseas markets, amongst which are China, Korea and Canada, exporting over 100 containers last year. We also have important markets in Germany, France (in biological produce) and the Nordic countries, such as Norway and Sweden.

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