The year 2020 marks the 10th year since the official launch of the MOOI dedicated Far East brand by Mooigezicht Estates. In the process of building relationships with buyers in the Far East, Mooigezicht Estates, based in the Hex River Valley in South Africa’s Western Cape, had been marketing their grapes in their traditional Mooigezicht brand. In 2009 they received feedback from customers on the Guangzhou fresh produce market in China who explained that name Mooigezicht was too long and difficult for customers in the East to pronounce. The same receivers also gave them some suggestions about on the design for a more suitable brand for Far East markets. What started as a sketched illustration on a serviette just over ten years ago has since grown into one of the leading South African table grape brands in the Far East.
“On the advice of our customers we shortened the name to MOOI, which means beautiful,” explains Francois Rossouw, MD of Mooigezicht Estates. “The colours and visual elements that we chose represent the scales of the dragon. The two O’s in the name are connected to represent the number 8, a number favoured by the Chinese culture. This logo was launched on our Far East carton in 2010 and at the time, printing the name in both Mandarin and Arabic on our cartons marked a South African grape industry first.”
Feedback has shown that the brand is regarded as one of the top South African table grape brands in the Chinese market. Besides the appeal of the carton to the Chinese customers, the motivation for this success has been excellent quality fruit and consistency of supply throughout the marketing season. “Since its launch, our Mooi brand has grown from strength to strength,” explained Rossouw. “We are continuing to grow our brand and are grateful that there is a good and growing demand for our Mooi branded fruit on markets throughout China and the Far East.”
New cold storage infrastructure and efficient logistics plan for effective cold steri treatment and rapid turnaround times on exports
In order to better serve the Far East (and other US Dollar markets), during 2019 Mooigezicht Estates built a dedicated cooling facility on the Estate. This new facility was launched in December 2019 and cools and stores 60 pallets of packed grapes. This is a vital resource in the Estate’s new logistics, cold steri and export plan for their growing exports to markets where market access for South African grapes is subject to the grapes undergoing cold steri treatment in compliance with the Cold Steri protocol (China, Vietnam, USA & Israel).
The Estate has a dedicated refrigerated transport service provider which transports two to three loads daily to SAFT (South African Fruit Terminals) Atlantic near the Port of Cape Town. Once at SAFT, the cold steri process is implemented by SAFT prior to shipment to international markets. The new logistical process saves five days between packing and shipping, the fruit is handled less than before and is not be subjected to a double cooling process.
This improved logistics plan and infrastructure are further assisting the growth of the Mooi Brand. “We are excited to be growing our Mooi brand,” says Rossouw. “This year we plan to export up to 500 000 cold steri processed cartons, mostly to our Far East and China markets, and as our productions are rapidly increasing, we are confident that this figure will continue to grow steadily during the next few years.”
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