Global fresh fruit marketer and supplier, Vanguard International, is beginning to reap the benefits of its significant investment into Peru.
In 2016, the company expanded its production scope by acquiring Peru’s Agricola Challapampa. Since then, further investments have been made in order to support a year-round supply solution of fresh produce to global consumers.
One of the significant developments was the construction of a new packing house in Ica, Peru, which is equipped with the ability to control temperatures and holding environments to ensure the quality of produce.
Alongside these developments, Vanguard implemented a Total Quality Management (TQM) team upon acquisition in 2016.
Business development officer at Vanguard International, and president of Vanguard Direct, Dirk Winkelmann, said appointing a TQM team was an important step, “Between expanding operations in Peru and partnering with Sun World Innovations to add their top-quality grape varieties to our growing programme, it was clear that quality management of our programme would be critical.”
Vanguard Peru’s TQM team monitors quality and efficiencies for the whole of operations, including plant installation, growth, farming, harvest, packaging, storage, and dispatching.
“What differentiates our TQM programme is our control system. We are consistently using indicators of work efficiency housed in a state-of-the-art data house that controls development, speed, and quality of work”, said Manuel Yzaga (pictured), president of Vanguard Peru.
“Errors or inefficiencies are identified immediately and communicated through chain of command as quickly as possible.”
Achievements from the TQM team include migration to a fully digital recording system, as well as a newly improved evaluation system for all suppliers.
The Vanguard TQM team are expecting an increased emphasis on consistency of quality, condition, berry size, bunch size and flavour from the 2020 season.