Saturday, January 24, 2015

African Blue ~ A New Niche Market for Morocco

Moroccan berry growers have begun developing Australian blueberry varieties in order to fill a gap in global production.  The two month window between the end of Chilean production and the commencement of Spanish berries gives Morocco a unique opportunity to enter the European market

The Australian blueberry varieties developed for plantings in Morocco have shown that the interaction between the fruit and the Moroccan soil and climate produces a high quality yield.

“Moroccan blueberry production is well-positioned and can offer fruit during a unique window,” explained Jean Cesar, supply chain manager for African Blue. “Chile finishes its season by February, and the next country that can supply blueberries in the Northern Hemisphere is Spain, which starts around mid-April. From February 15 to April 15 no other country can offer quality Kirra blueberries during this period.”

Kirra blueberries are African Blue exclusivity, they have excellent size, colour, sugar and texture, noted Jean Cesar, making them an attractive option for consumers. While local consumption skews toward strawberries, demand for blueberries abroad has been robust.

“Demand is very high, and it will continue to grow as more consumers become aware of the healthy benefits of blueberries,” said Jean Cesar. “African blue will offer 3000 tons of berries this season, and we should reach 7,000 tons by 2017.”

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