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Buyer Michiel van Dijk (HillFresh) evaluates grape season:

EU: "Delayed South African grapes created many opportunities in the market"

Large volumes of grapes were available in Namibia this year. "Because of the good weather conditions, an extensive harvest was the result and we were in a position to supply our customers with large volumes," grape salesman Michiel van Dijk says. "The delay of the South African grapes created many opportunities in the market. The demand matched perfectly and there was no overlapping of seasons. In general these two seasons run into each other, but as a well-known soccer player once mentioned: "Each disadvantage has its advantage."

Michiel van Dijk

HillFresh received the varieties Flame, Early Sweet, Sugraone, Thompson and Dan Ben Hanna. Michiel van Dijk speaks of a good quality season. "The fruit was juicy and the taste of the grapes was very good last season. Through the years the consumption of grapes has remained reasonably stable in our opinion. It is becoming clear that Namibia export more and more grapes to other destinations, such as the Far East all the time, but the largest volumes mainly go to Europe."
According to van Dijk, the actual season runs well and according to plan. "At the moment no large volumes are available and the demand for grapes on the European market is not very high. The seedless grapes from Chile are available in smaller quantities, the South African season is almost over, but at the moment India
has a good production at reasonable prices available."
The most important buyers of HillFresh are the European retail customers. "They attach, just like us, a high value to aspects of food safety, quality and very good taste," Michiel says. When asked whether HillFresh is sometimes triggered by customers to start new varieties or concepts, the grape seller answered: "We characterize ourselves by being the first with our retail clients with a taste concept, which offers the client surplus value. We select our grapes on taste, durability and quality, so that the customer can be sure that he can offer a good product to his clients again. Retailers are more interested in their supply of fresh product and have to be attentive to that all the time to be in a position to supply this consistently."
For more information:
Michiel van Dijk
Tel: 0031 180-898062
Fax: 0031 180-898111

Publication date: 3/1/2013


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