The first container with fresh ginger from NOW Organic's own factory was shipped out last weekend. After obtaining the export license, the brand new factory in Dalian, China was officially up and running.
Starting mid-November weekly containers of ginger will arrive in Rotterdam from China.
Rob van Baal, manager Dalian NOW China, at the entrance gate to the factory.
The factory complex is as large as 1.5 soccer fields and has three large refrigerated warehouses with a total storage capacity of approximately 6,500 m3. The washing line has a capacity of two tons per hour. In the winter months, when the ginger market peaks, NOW can process five containers of ginger per week, says Rob van Baal.
Washing ginger uses a lot of water, therefore we have invested heavily in water treatment. As a result, our water consumption is up to 50% lower. After selecting and cutting the ginger, it goes to the drying room and is then packaged in 13.6 kilo boxes, then it is ready for export.
According to Rob van Baal, having your own factory provides new opportunities, "Demand for ginger juice will rise fast in the coming years. We can fill this demand by making the juice in our own factory. This juice is a valuable addition to the juice industry in both the European and American markets." Hans Versteegh, NOW Nederland manager, sitting with Sam, manager of organic farming for NOW China and his brother Lee, manager of the ginger project.
Control over the whole chain
From the Chinese branch NOW Organic has been active on the ginger market for a number of years now. Now that the factory is up and running and the Dutch branch is taking care of the logistics, NOW Organic has complete control of the chain: from farming to storage and processing, export and import, sales of full containers of ginger and consumer packaging, and everything in between," says Han Versteegh. "We have already been active in the organic ginger market for a number of years now but with our own factory, the long-term cooperation with our farmers and the logistics in the Netherlands, we now communicate a very clear story to our customers. Our traceability, organic quality and assured availability is very much appreciated in the organic market and by customers who want steady, reliable products."
Lee with a nice piece of ginger that was just harvested.
This week the ginger started being harvested. This has to be done by hand to avoid damaging the ginger. The foliage is removed from the root of the ginger and stored in cardboard boxes. The ginger root pictured above weighs approximately three kilos. After a storage period of approximately 1.5 months the skin of the ginger is sufficiently hard and ready for export.
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Hans VersteeghNOW Organic International B.V.