NZ: postharvest operator puts cash on the line for G3 kiwifruit conversions

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NZ: postharvest operator puts cash on the line for G3 kiwifruit conversions

New Zealand postharvest operator Direct Management Services (DMS) has offered cash incentives for growers to make the switch to Psa-tolerant gold kiwifruit variety G3. ZSG-1+05L-15cm_low _ Zespri SunGold small

DMS director Paul Jones tells the company assessed the variety's performance over three years, and came to the conclusion in the summer that "the time was right".

DMS is now making the offer to finance the conversion portion of orchards under lease arrangements.

"This is a new offering whereby a postharvest operator and orchard manager is offering one, our professional orchard management services, and two, a degree of financing to assist people who may otherwise not be able to do it," he said.

"It may encourage somebody who’s only going to do a little bit to do a little bit more."

He adds it won't just be his own suppliers who will benefit from the offer, with a budget to be worked out in the coming weeks.

"Our own growers have been reasonably aggressive and entrepreneurial in converting to this variety already, and so while it's absolutely open to them, it's open to the wider industry."

Jones admits the road will still be rocky at times for growers battling with Psa. G3 - marketed overseas as SunGold - is not resistant, but he believes the cultivar has "an outstanding future".

"Demand for gold is very high and our customers worldwide are willing to pay outstanding prices for it. Gold has been exceptionally profitable for New Zealand kiwifruit growers and in our view will continue to be so.

"Whilst green is quite profitable, particularly for high producing orchards, gold and this variety of gold have the opportunity to be up to six times as profitable."


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