Italian technology firm Ser.mac says it sees good opportunities for growth in the international cherry business, as it bids to achieve new sales with a new sorting machine designed specifically for the fruit.
The Cesena-based company unveiled the Daytona Cherry at Macfrut, the fresh produce trade exhibition which took place in Rimini, Italy, this week.
And according to export sales director Alessandro Pasi, a relative lack of competition among technology providers specialising in cherries compared, say, with other major fruits like citrus, suggests it is a category in which Ser.mac can build a good reputation.
“To be honest, if you sell machines to the citrus industry, you’re going to be facing 12 competitors and it’s a low-price market,” he commented. “The cherry market, in contrast, currently offers plenty of demand and few competitors. It’s not easy to sort cherries well.”
Pasi said the group had already seen good demand for Daytona Cherry, which can process up to 700kg of fruit per line per hour, around 1,800 individual cherries per minute.
Ser.mac recently installed two six-lane sorting lines in Chile, and has also sold the system to clients in Italy, Bulgaria and Romania.
Despite having its own production centre in Brazil, Pasi said the majority of the company’s international customers preferred to purchase machines from Italy, with the Brazilian facility mainly supplying customers in that country itself.