New South Wales grape growers Beverley Road Farms is reporting an increase in quality and fruit size this season due to the favourable weather conditions.
"This season’s cooler summer with cooler nights has really enhanced the colour of the fruit and early spring rain has also helped with the health and growth of the vines through spring and early summer," Owner/Director Dom Schirripa said. "In general, our quality has been really good. This year in particular our quality has been exceptional. The fruit size, colour, Brix and bloom look really great as the weather gods have been kind to us which has helped the fruit quality."
He is expecting volumes of fruit will be up this season due to increased bunch size and weight. Beverley Road Farms, located in Hanwood in the central Riverina region, and currently has 200 hectares in production, growing 3000 tonnes of grape annually. The fruit is being marketed by Sai World Pty Ltd who Mr Schirripa says takes the utmost care in selling the product and protecting the brand.
"We grow many varieties of grapes, some of what we grow are for wine production," he said. "The table grape varieties that we grow are Red Globe, Autumn Royal and Crimson. We have equal quantities of each variety. Exclusive varieties are in the pipeline and we will launch them in the coming seasons."
Mr Schirripa added that the farm is a third-generation family-owned business, with a lot of work going into Beverley Road Farms as a brand and have built it on a platform of producing the highest quality; from growing right through the supply chain until it reaches the customers around the world.
"Our family came to the region from southern Italy in 1948 and moved to the region to work on farms and gain a better life for our family," he said. "They purchased farms and we are now third-generation grape farmers in the Riverina. This region generally has cooler nights than other growing regions and beautiful warm sunny days with a reliable irrigation network which is vital for grape production. This region mainly produces citrus, sugar plums, wine grapes, rice and various vegetables."
The major markets include Vietnam, India, Malaysia, Dubai, Indonesia and Europe, and Mr Schirripa explains that demand for high-quality Australian produce "has and will always be" popular due to Australia’s clean green climate and world-leading growing practices.
"Fortunately, we have not had a shortage of orders due to the quality of the fruit this season but COVID-19 has caused major problems with port and vessel delays." Mr Schirripa said. "We generally don’t supply domestic markets at the moment but are looking at launching a domestic program in the future. For us, demand has been really strong as we are a family-owned and run business and we are a late region and our fruit is ready for harvest when the other growing regions are finishing up. Which gives us a unique opportunity to supply world markets with quality Australian produce until the fruit from the northern hemisphere starts their seasons."