New Zealand horti prospects look bright

The latest 700 hectare tranche of SunGold licences to grow the fruit sold for a median value of circa $400,000 per hectare (excluding GST), a 37 percent leap on last year's value. The offering was oversubscribed by over 2:1, with growers seeking 1660 hectares worth of licences.

The SunGold kiwifruit licence tender round seems to reflect the level of industry confidence in the fruit's future with its offshore consumers. The value puts SunGold at the top of fruit license values with the next closest being Envy apples at about $100,000 per hectare.

After years of trial work, this year also marked the first time Red kiwifruit have been offered for commercial growing. The 50 hectares of licences were snapped up at a median value of $62,000 per hectare and was also oversubscribed by 110 hectares.

This comes while Zespri continues to work on tuning up Red's shelf storage life and works to lift its potential yield and fruit size.

Bayleys Te Puke salesperson Snow Williams said interest continued to be strong in orchard purchases from both investment groups and from growers wanting to expand their holdings. “The valuations of orchards are based on very sound economic principles, on what those crops are earning in the market rather than any particular perceived future value, and it is holding the market to very realistic expectations.”

With such good sustained yield and the ability to contract management, more opportunities will open for non-orcharding investors in the coming months.


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