In Egypt the growers are getting ready for a busy grape season. Exhibitions like Fruit Logistica and Fruit Attraction really helped the Egyptian exporters expand their potential markets for the produce. The next step might be to partnering up with other producers and exporters.
These are very busy times for Egyptian exporter FinBi for Land Reclamation and Agriculture Development. It’s the period of vegetation management and everyone has to bring their A game. May Salem, Managing Director for FinBi has taken extra precautions to protect their grapes: “About 90 to 95 per cent of our production of grapes are destined for export, as all our Superior and Flame fields are covered with plastic. Plastic coverings are expensive, but they do protect the trees from rain and wind. Last year under the Egyptian integrated coding system for exports, our farm produced 840 tons for exports. However, this season we expect to go up to 950 tons for exports.”
The grapes are part of Finbi’s brand Nates’nGrapes, along with the company’s pomegranates. The grapes are expected to have a variety of destinations this season: “We are targeting Europe, specifically UK, Holland and Poland. For the Far East the target countries are Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong and we expect to export to some African markets too. Fruit Logistica and Fruit Attraction were also very useful as we got contacts in France, Slovenia, the Czech Republic, China and India. The German Import Promotion Desk (IPD) has supported FinBi immensely over the past year in our promotion activities, and we count on their continuous support.” Salem says.
There are some challenges for the season though, Salem acknowledges: “Temperature climate conditions this winter in Egypt affected the volumes in some of the grape varieties, especially flame, and this may result in a delay in the harvest in general. A few changes in the EU permitted pesticides list took place, and we are currently following the updates. We are also very careful about the levels of MRLs and number of substances that is required by the supermarkets, as these clients are very important to us.”
Salem does have an idea on how to overcome these and other challenges in the future; by working together! Salem explains: “We see that a number of producers and exporters are partnering to combine their strength and leverage a decrease in costs, and increase their quality and reach. We are looking forward to partnering for the exports of our grapes this season and see how far we can improve.”