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Inma Torregrosa, of Frutas Inma: "The demand for off-season persimmon is undoubtedly on the rise"

High demand for early persimmons ahead of the arrival of the Rojo Brillante

The persimmon season is underway in Spain with the last volumes of the early varieties Maxim and Tone Wase, which will be followed by the main variety: the Rojo Brillante. Sales of the earliest varieties have been good, as well as those of imported persimmons from Peru, the demand for which increases in the off-season.

"The Maxim persimmon has not been yielding very good results in recent years in terms of marketing; however, this year there has been a significant increase in the demand from large European retail chains, partly due to the low supply of stone fruit on the shelves because of the impact of frosts. There are also clear indicators pointing to an on-going increase in persimmon consumption," says Inma Torregrosa, manager of Frutas Inma.

"Sales have been good so far for these early varieties, which have reached high prices in markets such as Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom," she says. "These are flatter varieties, also sweet and more delicate than the Rojo Brillante persimmon. They are handled differently and must be harvested under some specific conditions."

"The demand for off-season persimmons is undoubtedly on the rise". 
The Valencian company has been the first in Europe to import persimmons from Peru; a milestone it already achieved last year following a project launched in 2013 in the Andean country, which was complemented with some imports from Uruguay.

"The demand for off-season persimmons is undoubtedly on the rise. This year we have sold more than twice as much as last year in the same period, and earlier than we had planned. There has been lots of interest from German, Italian and Portuguese supermarket chains. We hope to continue growing in terms of volume in the coming years, since our goal is to market persimmons from the end of May to the end of July and be able to connect one day with the arrival of the first Maxim and Tone Waser persimmons and continue later with the Rojo Brillante until the end of January," says Inma Torregrossa.

About to start with the Rojo Brillante persimmon, which has also been affected by hailstorms
Next week, Frutas Inma will start marketing the predominant variety in Spain: the Rojo Brillante. "When this variety arrives on the market, which usually does so with consistent quantities from weeks 38-39, buyers stop asking for any other variety. This year we are starting a little later due to the recent torrential rains and hail storms, which will lead to a reduction in the usable volumes. In fact, before the hail storms in Valencia, the production had already been expected to drop by about 25-30% due to the impact of pests, especially the cotonet. Now this volume drop could amount to around 35%-40%."

The producer and exporter says that, in addition to the drop in the production, there has also been a drastic increase in production costs this year. "The price of electricity has shot up by 42%, and the costs of gas for the fruit's ripening and of packaging are also up. We hope that large retailers will understand that neither the producers nor the marketers can lose more money and that every link in the chain should be able to make a profit."

For more information:
Inmaculada Torregrosa
Frutas Inma
Carrer de L’Olivera, S/N.
46291 Benimodo, Valencia. Spain
T:+34 96 253 14 71
M:+34 615196420

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