Second Tunisian pomegranate harvest set to start

About a week from the start of Tunisia's second pomegranate harvest, growers and exporters are seeing increased demand. New ways to consume pomegranates has stoked demand in Europe, while a dearth of produce options in Russia will likely pull more fruit to that market.

“The first harvest started a few weeks ago, and we'll begin production in the second area in about one week,” said Walid Gaddas of Alyssa Fruits. “For the second production, we expect a good crop with good quality because of the good weather conditions. At the moment, everything is okay.” The Jebali variety is the dominant one during the second harvest, with about 70 percent of the crop made up of that variety. The remaining 30 percent is for the Gabsi variety. Exports this year for Alyssa Fruits is expected to reach up to 1,000 tons on the back of growing demand.

“There are more opportunities for us in Russia this year,” said Gaddas. “It's been difficult in past years to enter that market because our fruit was higher-priced than fruit from Europe. But we have the opportunity to go to Russia this year, where they will discover our quality product.” Tunisia's pomegranates are sweeter and have softer and smaller seeds than competing fruit from Egypt and Turkey, so it commands a more premium price.
There are also more opportunities in Europe this year. Demand for pomegranates is growing in Europe as consumers become more aware of the health benefits of the fruit, but it's also growing as consumers become more aware of the different ways they can enjoy the fruit. There is an increasing demand in Italy from HORECA serving fresh-squeezed pomegranate juice, and Alyssa Fruits will begin shipping pomegranate arils to Italy this season.

“Consumption in Europe will increase, I believe, because the market will become more diversified,” said Gaddas. “Consumers will get their fruit not just from retailers and supermarkets.” Alyssa Farms sources their fruit from GlobalGAP-certified growers in Tunisia, and though they transport most of their fruit in refrigerated trucks, they also send their fruit via airfreight to Middle East countries.

Contact details:
Walid Gaddas
tel: 00216-29-325-343
Facebook : AlyssaFruitsTunisia
Author: Yzza Ibrahim / Carlos Nunez


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