The cultivation of Golden pineapples for export in the municipality of La Gloria, located in the Colombian department of Cesar, has started to pay off. The Pineapple International company, which was certified by Colombia's Agricultural Institute (ICA) in October 2014, has managed to export 20 tons of this fruit to Europe.
According to professionals from the organization, the pineapple cultivation cycle lasts 15 months and its first stage includes preparing the fields and planting the fruit. This first phase can take around 3 weeks. An average of 65,000 plants per hectare are being planted in southern Cesar.
The vegetative cycle, in which the plant grows, comes after the division and closure of the blocks. Producers should sow 400-gram plants and grow them until they weigh 3.4 to 3.6 kilograms. Once they acquire this weight, they must carry out an induction. This is the process required for the plant to flourish.
Thanks to the weather conditions, production times in Cesar can be controlled. Natural flowering only occurs when the temperature difference between the day and night is greater than 10 degrees. However, since the temperature in the department doesn't change this much, the producers must manage the fruit's sowing and harvesting times.
In addition, the pineapple's sugar content is directly related to the number of sunshine hours it receives. The more hours of sunshine, the higher the sugar content. That's why the pineapples from Cesar are so sweet, the professionals stated.
The two most important demands of the international market, before they will accept pineapples, are that they have more than 13 Brix degrees and that their acidity ranges between 0.4 and 0.7%.
This project, which has the support of the departmental government through the Secretaries of Agriculture, wouldn't be possible without the region's workers, their employees, and important investors from Bogota and Medellin.