International fresh produce marketer Vanguard International has said that it is feeling "optimism and excitement" ahead of the upcoming Peruvian grape season.
“Our Ivory variety is the first fruit off the line, and they feature great size, great colour, and great taste,” said Fanny Robles, Vanguard manager – Peru procurement and sales.
“We’ve never seen Ivory grapes that look like this before,” Robles continued. “We are seeing this consistently for all our varieties and our packinghouse teams have a renewed excitement.”
It’s not just the fruit leading the excitement of the Vanguard Global team, Robles explained.
“Compared to last season, we are very prepared right now," she said. "The entire global team is more connected than ever from those in the fields, to the packing house, shipping lines, and customers.
“Quality parameters have been further developed to meet packing needs for each different market. Our more experienced team combined with our strong crop means we can be more competitive in the market this year.”
By the end of November the group's red varieties will commence packing along with the remainder of the green varieties, including Sweet Globe. Shortly thereafter, around mid-December, Vanguard will begin with its black varieties.
The Peru crop will yield approximately 55 per cent green grapes, 40 per cent red grapes, and 5 per cent black this season.
“Our cultural practices at the field level and significantly improved quality are two very positive developments leading to more volume than we forecasted,” shared Dirk Winkelmann, president of Vanguard Direct.
“In particular with our green grapes, the average berry weight is a bit more than forecasted and that alone could push the crop up by 10 per cent. Equally important our packouts are quite a few points higher this season.
Vanguard noted that it was "well prepared and positioned" to transport increased grape volumes.
“The expansion of our facilities, to include both container plugs and increased pre-cool and coldstorage, will help to mitigate any logistical delays," Winkelmann added. "We are well positioned as we head into our peak grape volumes.”