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Israeli fig shippers enjoy open European market
“Demand is very good right now,” said Niva Ben Zion of Avniv. “It's not until the end of December when Argentina kicks in, and then South Africa comes in slowly after that. But we're almost all by ourselves at this time of year.” There's also product coming from Brazil, but Niva explained that many retailers, especially in Germany, prefer Israeli figs because many of the figs coming from Brazil are coated in a powder that retailers and customers find unpleasant.
“The Brazilian figs are covered in a powder to prevent decay, but people are not so happy about it,” said Niva. “More supermarkets demand that the fruit be without the powder because the powder affects the flavor.”
The biggest variety currently available from Israel is the Autumn Honey. It's a seasonal variety that is prevalent from October through December. Supplies from Israel will be available through January, and then there's a break before supplies spring up from May through August. There's then a final break before the season starts back up in October.
“It's a long season with just a few intermissions,” said Niva. “This is supposed to be a good year, and if we don't have any problems with the weather, then we'll have a good year in terms of yields.”
For more information:
Niva Ben Zion
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