The exotic fruits exporter Cosmo Fruit, aims to be Colombia’s fruit ambassador to the rest of the world. According to Mauricio Lopez N., President and CEO, they want to expand their exotic fruit from currently supplying North America and Europe, to the Middle-East and Asia.
“We are working with conventional and organic Tahiti limes where we exported last year around 1.5 million kg. from January to December. We also have Hass avocados, which we are growing in our operation from Colombia and export to North America. We also have products such as Physalis, passion fruit, mango, granadilla are some product involved recently in our portfolio where we believe in the opportunities to develop in Canada and the challenge to bring these products to the market by sea,” explains Lopez.
He says the prices they receive depend on the market. “Limes: now in the U.S. market is around $18-$22.00 for boxes of 17 Kg; on the other hand, Europe market prices are going around €6.50- €7:00 for boxes of 4 kg. Avocados: now in the U.S. market is around $24-$27.00 for boxes of 11,3 kg; on the other hand, Europe is going around €6.50- €7.00 for boxes of 4 kg in big sizes. The ocean freight from Colombia to the U.S. is around $4.500/ RF 40" and to Europe is around €4.200 / RF 40"."
Lopez says their strategy is based on what, when and how. “Currently our exports are focused in Tahiti Limes to Europe in the Netherlands, France, Turkey and UK. We keep on providing some supply to North America where we have to be present. Additionally, we want to expand our exports in the medium terms to reach new markets such as the Middle East, India and Asia. There is growth in their populations and new trends in their consumption.”
The export company with 12 years of experience specialised in the fruit industry with a head office in Canada, commercial office in Europe and sourcing office based in Colombia. Besides the exotics they have a line of processed fruit such as, Pulp Fruit, Dried fruit and dried fruit infusions.
Cosmo Fruit base their corporate principles on social responsibility by supporting the Colombian community through their involvement in the entire supply chain, through the business all year round says Lopez.
“The plantations from where we are harvesting the products are around the country. Where we source depends on the product involved, for example, for Tahiti Limes the plantations (400 Ha) where we are producing conventional and organic product are mainly in Santander. There we are working with small growers who we have formalized by a cooperative model. This is how we have a positive impact in this region where we are buying their products for 52 weeks per year. It allows the growers to get the assurance and guarantee that their products always has an outlet to go to. Another important aspect to mention is the work we do in their plantations. Cosmo Fruit assist them professionally and technically to achieve important certifications such as Global Gap, Grasp and Bio. One of the main advantages is that our packinghouse is placed around the farms, in that way we take care of the freshness and quality of the fruit exported to the international markets,” states Lopez.
For the Hass avocados they have two harvest per year, with plantations located from the south west to the centre of Colombia in regions such as Valle, Cauca, Quindio, Risaralda, Caldas and Antioquia. Part of the sourcing is done with third parties for 40/45 weeks per year. The growers involved are producing conventional product.
“Based on our strategy and the opportunities in the North American market, we have included the exotic category in our portfolio. We have a huge challenge to develop this market shipping by sea. Our marketing plan is based on quality, consistency and the social impact we are making in our beautiful country, we want to become the Colombian fruit ambassador,” concludes Lopez.