"It's a product with the same characteristics as a regular kiwi from a nutritional point of view, but with the size of a Thompson grape. It is a very attractive product for children, because it does not need to be peeled. It is a great source of nutrients, with a high vitamin C content, easy to consume and more practical than a conventional kiwi," states Alexander Tscherebilo, of Core Exports, who points out that only three or four of these small berries have the same nutrients as a Hayward kiwi.
Core Export has been marketing its kiwi berries under the brand Top Grade for more than ten years
"We are pioneers in this country; we found out about the product in the U.S. and we were immediately interested, since it is an item that is sold in a very similar format as conventional berries. We encourage local producers to expand their cultivation in Chile for us to export them."
In Chile there are currently few producers and the annual production amounts to 100 tonnes. Plantations are located mainly between the Sixth and Eighth regions. "The entire harvest is done in four weeks, which entails marketing difficulties, and we have to be very careful with the logistics," states Alexander.
"We sell about 80% of the production in the domestic market; the rest is shipped mainly to Europe (50%), the U.S. (30%) and Canada (20%). We work with importers such as Nature's Pride in the Netherlands and Special Fruit in Belgium," affirms Alexander.
The product is increasingly more appreciated, since a number of countries in the Northern Hemisphere have followed on Chile and New Zealand's steps and have also started growing the fruit. This has enabled the consumer to find the product in two different seasons, significantly boosting demand.
The average FOB price this season for a box with twelve 125 gram clamshells stands at around $ 12, which gives a return for the producer exceeding $ 4 per kilo, according to Alexander.
"New on paper, but old in experience and history"
Export Core also sells many other kinds of berries and fruits, such as kakis, quinces, pomegranates, and conventional and organic kiwis.
"Core Export has only been in operation for a few months, since September 2014, but it was originally part of CONFRUT, from which we separated. They continued with the frozen and processed fruit segment and we with the export of fresh fruit. In other words, we are new on paper, but old in experience and history," concludes Alexander.
Alexander CORE EXPORTS
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