In September 2018, Hortiblue was established as a subsidiary of Euroberry Sevilla. "We initially started to package and distribute products for the Northern European market for Hortifrut Chile, market leader in the supply of blueberries and other soft fruits from South America. We are now completing our second season, in which we have processed more than 6,000 tonnes of berries in various variations at our packing station in Venlo," says director Timo Elbers.
"We see the development that there is less and less prepackaged and more and more bulk shipped to Europe. The advantage for the clients is that the berries are packed only at the last moment, so that good quality and the right format can always be delivered. and there are no unnecessary costs for sorting and repackaging," said Timo. "Particularly for the German retail market with short lead times and changing programs, this has proven to be the way to work as efficiently and as cheaply as possible throughout the chain."
Five packaging lines
Hortiblue was already IFS, BRC and SKAL certified in their first year, while the entire operation was set up from scratch. "We have invested heavily in five packaging lines, with the latest sorting machines based on camera technology, heat seal and labelling equipment. Thanks in part to our machine park, we can sort fruit in all classes and sizes and deliver it in the requested sizes, from punnets to buckets with all desired labels. Investments were also made in an ERP system in which the fruit is registered and our customers have insight into the current stock and quality," says Timo Elbers.
"We are very proud of how quickly we started our activities and how well the past season went. We have built up a strong, young and flexible team with a lot of fruit and vegetable experience and worked with over 120 people during the peak period. Our strength and added value is In order to find the balance between optimising the result for the growers and guaranteeing the quality for the retailers and end consumers, good planning and a short relationship with the growers and sales organisation are essential, and for good reason our slogan is: We take care of your fruit! "
Hortiblue is located in the former Staay building on Fresh Park Venlo. "The central location for the Northern European market and the proximity to the major German retail chains is a big plus. We now have an excellent chilled distribution network across Europe and far beyond with our transporters. We are therefore expecting to continue to grow over the next years," said the director.
Services for third parties
Hortiblue is set up as an independent company that has the opportunity to offer its services to third parties. In the coming months, there is still capacity to store and package fruit (chilled or no) in addition to the blueberries of the Spanish partner for Dutch growers or traders. In addition to soft fruit, Hortiblue also has options for other fruit such as strawberries, cherries and grapes.
For more information:
5928 RH Venlo
Mob: 0031 (0) 651690937