A reduction in green kiwifruit volumes out of New Zealand has prompted leading supplier NutriKiwi to invest heavily in customer support in the Australian market this season.
The group has set up dedicated sales teams in almost every Australian state, including Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia.
“Environmental factors have had a big impact on this year’s kiwifruit crop in New Zealand,” NutriKiwi general manager Michael Leach said. “Volume is down around 25 per cent and smaller-sized fruit that is traditionally used in pre-packs is all but non-existent this season.
“NutriKiwi’s key focus is to provide retailers with the best possible customer support and Class A quality fruit to on-sell to their customers.”
Despite the lower volume, Leach said average fruit size is currently a 25/27 – “about the size of my palm which is the biggest we’ve had for many years.”
Inline with its investment in customer support, NutriKiwi has developed new in-store signage, featuring a range of different taglines including “It’s the kiwi Aussie’s love” and “Daily nutrition made easy." Corflute banners ranging from A4 to 1.2m wide are available, along with NutriKiwi strip advertising to enclose fruit displays.
“NutriKiwi’s point of sale displays, coupled with our on-the-ground merchandising team, will ensure we provide focused customer support,” Leach explained. “This will help our Australian retail partners create in-store theatre to make it a fun and enjoyable consumer experience.”
NutriKiwi has also engaged directly with Australian consumers at various events such as the recent World Sport Schools Netball and Rugby carnival on the Gold Coast.
NutriKiwi is a product of the Nutritious Kiwifruit Company, a joint venture between leading Bay of Plenty post-harvest operators EastPack, Trevelyan’s Pack & Cool, DMS Progrowers and Opotiki Packing & Cool Storage that began in 2014. The group is said to control approximately 50 per cent of all available green kiwifruit shipped into the Australian wholesale and retail markets.