Fresh produce grower and trader the Jupiter Group has acquired South-African fruit suppliers Bonaire with plans to grow on 1200 hectares of new orchards.
The family-run Shropshire-based company purchased the major share in Bonaire, who have over 800 hectares of citrus across two locations, as well as stonefruit and grapes at a further three sites.
Bonaire will change their name to Jupiter South Africa, with some teams merging between companies. Jupiter Group directors Mark and Yvonne Tweddle said they wanted to “bring together both the farming and marketing expertise that each of the teams respectively achieves.”
The couple said potential for the farm is “extremely exciting” as there are 1000s of hectares not currently being farmed.
Mark Tweddle said: “This is a major acquisition for us and reinforces the change in direction that we have taken to become international growers.
“Already the teams have plans to increase immediate production to 1200ha including new varieties within each category of fruit, the build of a new pack house and installation of a new industry leading packing line.
“We’re also assessing existing equipment on the farms and improvements will be made as, and where, needed. As our plans evolve we will be sure to update our customers and suppliers.”
South Africa holds a special significance for the Tweddles as their business started on the back of growing produce in the same region.
Yvonne Tweddle added: “We are extremely pleased to be putting back into the communities and farms of this region. We hope to bring prosperity and opportunity to those working on the farms and will be investing time, equipment and support into the local communities to improve the lives of others.”
Welcoming the new members at their Paarl office, near Cape Town, Mark Tweddle said: “It was a real pleasure to meet such an enthusiastic group of people.”