Zespri shifting focus to address fruit quality concerns

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Zespri shifting focus to address fruit quality concerns

Zespri, the world's largest kiwifruit marketer, has set forth a five-year plan to confront fruit quality concerns.

The conservative plan announced by the New Zealand-based company will focus on taste, nutritious value, and delivering consistent quality to its consumers worldwide. 

Quality issues faced last year by the industry could become a $500 million problem according to Bruce Cameron, Zespri Chairman. 

The company had considered planting 700 new hectares of SunGolf kiwifruit orchard, said Carol Ward, Chief grower at Zespri. However, they allowed only 350ha for this year's season in order to meet growing demand. 

Challenges faced by the industry have been driven mainly by the supply chain, ongoing Covid effects, and labor shortages. The impact of weather events has also played a role in challenges associated with fruit quality. 

Looking ahead, they forecast a 35% volume growth in supply between the 2022 season and 2027, including all five categories of kiwifruit commercialized by the company. 

Zespri RubyRed Kiwifruit production will begin in 2025. 

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