Mission Produce launches South African operations - FreshFruitPortal.com

Mission Produce establishes Southern African avocado operations

California-headquartered avocado company Mission Produce has announced it's establishing operations in Southern Africa in partnership with ZZ2 and Core Fruit.

Mission said the new partnership will create the "most powerful trading platform for avocados produced in Africa", bringing the continent's avocados to markets including Europe and Asia, with anticipated South African access to the U.S.

In this partnership, Mission will bring its marketing expertise, renowned brand and distribution network while Core Fruit, the largest exporter of fresh produce out of South Africa, will manage the logistics.

ZZ2, an iconic South African brand and farming operation, will offer its production, packing and ecosystem creation know-how, together with its avocado technical knowledge, resource base, local networks, nursery trees, packing facilities and its association with Criterion Africa Partners, who have access to significant land holdings.

To enable all South African growers to participate in the initiative, Mission South Africa will establish regional relationships and source product from quality growers.

Mission expects that the ecosystem created by this partnership will add value to growers and assist to develop the full avocado potential of the region.

The company also foresees rapidly expanding its vertical integration model in an advantageous supply window.

“The Mission Produce-ZZ2 relationship is a strong combination and demonstrates our commitment to expanding globally and leading the avocado industry,” said Mission Produce’s president and CEO Steve Barnard.

"These powerhouse companies are collaborating in South Africa to amplify state-of-the-art supply chain practices from field to fork. Southern Africa is an ideal source because of the region's location, fruit quality and access to Europe and Asia.”

“We have hired an in-country manager, Lindie Stroebel, to hit the ground running and support fast growth. We are excited for her to establish a presence and start building local connections,” said Mission Produce’s vice president of global sourcing Keith Barnard.

“The addition of South Africa will ensure that Mission Produce’s supply keeps pace with demand. We are striving for full surety of supply.”

ZZ2 is a longstanding and highly regarded agriculture company with an iconic domestic brand in Southern Africa, Mission said. In recent years, ZZ2 has developed and executed an aggressive growth strategy for avocados and other export crops.

“Given Mission Produce’s volition to establish a strong global brand, world class ripening technology and the ability to create and stimulate global demand for avocados, we have selected the ideal partner,” added CEO of ZZ2, Tommie Van Zyl.

"We are looking forward to taking the avocado industry to the next level with Mission Produce by our side."