The Italian company Società Agricola Guidi is working on increasing its the value of its apricots, grown on more than 300 hectares in the province of Forlì-Cesena, through a new premium brand, a new Albisole spot on TV, the expansion of the structure and more exports, and zero residue.
"Due to the frost, we lost about 25% of our potential, but we estimate that we will still harvest 6,500 tons of crops until September. This is our first year with really important quantities," said Roberto Guidi, commercial director and son of the founder Giancarlo.
About 80% of the apricots are marketed domestically and currently eight of the main retail chains have signed supply agreements. "We also want to increase sales abroad and to achieve this goal we are still working with the Mediterraneo Group. We have a crop that stands out for its color, size and especially taste."
This year there are fewer apricots on the plants, and this benefits the dry matter. The harvest of the yellow apricots started in early June, that of the red ones on Thursday, 10 June 2021.
"With the Rubysole brand, we increase the value of the red apricots, while the bi-colored apricots fall into the yellow Albisole category. We pay very close attention to the selection and only varieties with a completely red skin and excellent aroma and taste can bear the Rubysole brand. The already consolidated Albisole brand and the Terra di Romagna brand will contribute to define a further expansion of the premium line."
There is also a choice in terms of packaging. Under the Terra di Romagna brand, the apricots are available in two-kilogram boxes or in single-layer R-Pet trays of 500 grams. These complement the classic trays with a guaranteed weight which, thanks to the black background, highlight the bright color of the apricots.
The research for ecological and eco-friendly materials continues, also because the company obtained the optional product certification Friend of the Earth.
"Zero residue started as a bet a few years ago, but today 80% of our apricots can boast this guarantee. We have more than 200 hectares of plants protected by hail-resistant, rain-resistant and insect-resistant nets and this makes it easier for us to achieve this goal."
Regarding the expansion of the site located in Carpinello (Forlì), Guidi pointed out that they will increase the capacity of the cold storage and the new processing areas.