The Associated International Group of Nurseries (AIGN®) has made it their corporate mission to seek out new opportunities in tree fruit selections to share among their membership for global commercialization and promotion. After several years of work, Dr. Gavin Porter, CEO of AIGN® and the Australian Nurserymen’s Fruit Improvement Company Ltd. (ANFIC) announced to the AIGN Board of Directors at the 31st annual meeting, the completion of contract negotiations for 3 Australian-bred plum varieties, stating, “These varieties will infuse some excitement into a mature plum category.” Each plum is represented by a different variety owner, which added to the complexity of the negotiation process. The contracts call for AIGN® to provide global management services and global marketing services for the variety owners.
Initially marketed in Australia as the Sweetah™ plum, AJOP20 cv., is ready to harvest on the edge of the soft fruit season. Variety owner RPA Superfoods Pty Ltd, claims the very high brix (22-24) reading of their selection makes the rosy, heart-shaped fruit one of the sweetest early season plums on the market. Fruit available from plantings in the Southern Hemisphere will coincide nicely with the Christmas and Lunar New Year holidays. Due to its active presence in the secondary product market, the mid-season Queen Garnet cv. managed by Global Master Licensee, Nutrafruit Pty Ltd. may be the most well-known of the group. Also known by its trademark tagline, QG - The Antioxidant Plum™, this selection is a member of the super-food category due to the very high antioxidant content found in the deep purple/dark red pigments of the skin and the flesh. Finally, the plum selection owned by Vitaplum Technology Pty Ltd, and marketed locally under the Vitaplum™ name, GW1 cv., will enter the market near the end of the soft fruit season. Vitaplum GW1 cv. is a sweet-tasting plum with a balanced flavor, very dark, nearly black flesh and some of the highest antioxidant readings of any fruit. All three plums have been the subject of analysis and studies that document their richness in vitamins and antioxidants, and links to positive effects on health.
Typically, plums make a fleeting appearance on the shelves of the produce isle each season. This can make it difficult for the consumer to learn to differentiate between varieties or form an emotional loyalty to a particular selection or brand. AIGN® is formulating a global, synchronized marketing plan to extend the exposure of these plum varieties to the consumer by capitalizing on the complementary ripening schedule of the three selections (early, mid and late season), when coordinated with progressive harvests controlled by latitude and altitude of the plantings, will allow for an extended- season presence at the store. Educating shoppers about the high-health benefits of plums, as well as the flavorful eating experience they provide, will be a focus of the consumer campaign.
Dr Gavin Porter
Tel: +61 7 3491 9905