Supplies of imported ginger from Brazil continue to grow.
“The situation this year for Brazilian ginger is good. We have our own farms over there and we’ve increased our production. Overall, the production increased from last year to this year by 15-20 percent,” says Frederico Stuhr of Pommer Fresh Foods in Fort Lauderdale, Fl.
Brazilian ginger, which runs between April to December, has grown in popularity due to an increased demand for it. “More and more people are asking to buy ginger from Brazilian growers so they’ve increased their production,” says Stuhr, who adds that ginger from Brazil resembles Hawaiian ginger in that it’s shiny, has fibres inside (unlike the Chinese ginger) and generally comes in big “hands.”
Maintaining quality standards
That said, increased production means more challenges along the way. “The main challenge is keeping up the quality control. We do a lot of volume but it can be challenging to keep the quality standard up,” says Pommer’s Apanatche Bark. “But because we have full control of our products and our own farms, it’s easier for us to manage.”
Increasing interest in Brazilian ginger also brings on another newer hurdle. “Another concern every year is new companies show up in the fields and start buying ginger—they have no certifications or anything like that,” says Stuhr. “These people are messing up the market every year. Last year, we were selling for between $20-$25 and there were people selling for $15-$16. Some of the growers were hurt too because they didn’t receive anything.”
That said, this year’s pricing does seem to match last year’s prices. “We’re expecting the same this season because with increased supply, we believe more people are consuming ginger,” says Stuhr. “There are more retailers buying it and manufacturers of food and drinks are also using ginger more.”