Conserve Italia is the most important Italian processing industry with the brands Valfrutta, Yoga, Derby Blue and Jolly Colombiani – the company’s holds 40% of market share within the Horeca. Although everyone knows these famous brands, few are aware of the supply chain behind every single bottle of juice.
Cleaning the pear at the Barbiano implant
Francesco Bassi is the manager of the planting in Barbiano, “Everything starts with a high-quality in the fields. Our fruits are processed only if they meet two requirements: they are ripe and healthy. Fruit orchards are indeed located 60 km away from the implant. In this way, only a short time passes between the harvesting and the processing”.
The produce is pasteurised or sterilised
These are the numbers of Conserve Italia: 150 million litres of juice produced per year, 45.000 tons of fresh fruits, 413 million pieces between glass bottles, pets and bricks of different dimensions.
Overview of the bottling phase
An interesting aspect that involves the producers is represented by the supply chain projects. Almost 800 fruit orchard hectares (provided by the farmers from the Apo Conerpo group) are devoted to the production of fruits destined to the processing industry. The fruits are peaches, pears, apples and apricots. Bassi clarifies, “We must have aromatic varieties with a high Brix degree in order to achieve the best quality for our juices and nectars. The size or the shape is not important as all the harvest is destined to the processing industry. That is why we promoted old varieties – which are considered not suitable for fresh marketing but have a high sensorial standard – such as Redhaven, Glohaven, Maria Marta and Suncrest”.
Francesco Bassi, manager of the implant in Barbiano
The producers involved in this can count on a minimum guaranteed price that allows them to have a safe and sure revenue. We work with contracts lasting for many years – they last indeed for the whole life of a given fruit orchard.
An increasing offer of organic products
Given the success of the projects regarding yellow and clingstone peaches, recently the company focused on other three varieties: Williams pears, cream apricots and cream nectarines.
Daniele Piva is responsible for the Servizio Agricolo Frutta di Conserve Italia, “Three years ago, we realized the Williams pear implants and last year the first shipments arrived. In all of this are involved: 115 hectares, 54 farming companies and 7 cooperatives. Our goal is to reach the 4.500 tons within the next 5 years. With regard to the cream apricots, the hectares are 140, the farming companies 79 and the cooperatives 8. Our goal here is 4.000 tons. Finally, the cream nectarines were planted two years ago. This year, we will get the first production. For this, the numbers are 33 farming companies, 4 cooperatives, for a total of 55 hectares”.
New packaging for the 200ml juice
Another supply chain project is the organic farming of Williams pears, yellow peaches and Golden apples. We devoted 100 hectares to this project and the first productions should arrive within three years. Needless to say, all the crops are managed by technicians and farmers. In this way, the whole supply chain is constantly monitored, step by step.
Automatic transportation. Check out the video!
Bassi adds, “We have 400 different types of references. At our plant in Barbiano, we work 24 hours, 5 days per week for a total of 240 contract and permanent labourers. The total number of vegetable processing plants – tomato included – is 9”.