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Harm Valckx plants 20 hectares of blueberries in Lithuania
Lithuania fills gap between EU and South American cultivation
While many blueberry cultivators are looking for an expansion of the early season in countries such as Spain, Morocco, Romania and Ukraine, Dutch cultivator Harm Valckx is going further north for expansion. This spring, he started planting 20 hectares of blueberries in Lithuania. “In the past ten years we noticed a gap between European and South American production from September to the start of October. With this expansion, we are trying to close that gap.”
“Lithuania is located the furthest north for the proper cultivation of blueberries. Cultivation is still limited there now, and small cultivation companies are cultivating extensively. We will cultivate according to Dutch cultivation methods in Lithuania,” Harm says. “Cultivation-wise, the company will be guided by us, but we are appointing a Lithuanian manager.”
The intention is to package the Lithuanian blueberries in the Netherlands. “We have noticed that European consumers prefer European product over South American product. We are therefore very confident that we can close this period of scarcity on the market with Lithuanian berries. We are starting with 20 hectares, but have expansion possibilities to 80 hectares,” Harm concludes.
Publication date: 2/17/2017
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