Almost four decades after the first kiwi plants arrived in Mar del Plata, the region has 400 hectares dedicated to its cultivation which produce 80% of all the kiwi in Argentina. This means that, out of every 100 kilos that are consumed in the country, 30 are Argentine and 25 are produced in Mar del Plata.
Kiwi plantations in Mar del Plata can be found on Route 88, or near Sierra de los Padres.
The area has ideal conditions that make the quality of the fruit better than the rest. Both the climate and the characteristics of the earth are ideal for kiwi. However, producers must control the impact of wind, frost, and some hail. To do this, they invest in structures that protect the crop throughout the process.
Kiwi production is a good source of jobs. The maintenance and harvesting process is done by hand. The sector also conducts pruning, harvesting, tying, and pollination tasks. In addition, it creates wealth indirectly, as the whole process includes inputs, transport, packaging, tools, etc.
When crop production began to expand in the area, the Mar del Plata Chamber of Kiwi Producers was created, which also includes the General Pueyrredon, Balcarce, General Alvarado, and La Costa parties.
The Chamber was created with the goal of promoting the development of the crop in the area by controlling the quality parameters in production. To this end, it designed, together with the post-harvest fruit department of the National Institute of Agricultural Technology of Balcarce, a protocol that imposes high values of maturity levels required to approve the harvest. This ensures that the producers, who are members of the chamber and meet the standards, will send to the market a tasty fruit that is at its appropriate point.
In 2015, the first Kiwi celebration party was held at the access to Sierra de los Padres. The event lasted two days and included an exhibition of producers, a fair of entrepreneurs and merchants of the area, shows, and recreational and cultural activities.
According to specialists, the growth of kiwi is unstoppable and the only thing necessary for the sector to continue growing is favorable macroeconomic conditions.