New look and packaging to hit the market as Sunshine Coast strawberry season begins
Piñata Farms has unveiled a new look for its strawberry brand as the winter season at its Sunshine Coast farm gets underway.
Sales and marketing manager Rebecca Scurr said shelf appeal and maintaining a premium retail position were among the key drivers behind the update.
“We’ve updated the strawberry brand as part of a major corporate rebrand across our entire business. Strawberries are the last to roll out the new look which features a bright red, contemporary strawberry shape and lots of clear space around logo elements to allow consumers to see the fruit,” explained Scurr.
“Consumers are familiar with a bright red Piñata strawberry label and we’re confident they will love the contemporary look, as our customers do. The feedback from retailers is that our punnets continue to stand out on supermarket shelves.
“From the farm to the shelf, we strive for quality all along the supply chain and keep upping the ante through innovation or improved practices to achieve it.”
Scurr said a return to ideal growing conditions at Wamuran following challenging La Niña-induced pre-season conditions had buoyed hopes for producing consistent quality, and flavoursome fruit until October.
“We planted significantly less strawberries this season to account for the predicted conditions, allowing the growing team to focus on plant health and performance. Our post-harvest focus has been on improving steps along the supply chain to continue delivering exceptional quality fruit to our retail partners,” she said.
Piñata Farms’ packhouse improvements include addition of a quick-chill cool room, modifications to bench assembly, customisation of a heat-sealing machine to accommodate three different punnet sizes and installation of a new conveyor.
“This is the first season that 100 per cent of our premium strawberries are in heat-sealed punnets. Heat-sealing reduces packaging by 30 per cent and keeps berries fresher and firmer for longer,” said Scurr.
“All premium berry lines grown by Piñata Farms – including BerryWorld raspberries – are now packed in heat-sealed punnets and all punnets pass through a metal detector before distribution.”
Piñata Farms has produced winter strawberries on the Sunshine Coast since 2000. It also produces summer strawberries at Stanthorpe, southern Queensland and will harvest its inaugural Tasmanian crop at Orielton in late November.
Scurr said strawberry prices – set by retailers – were extraordinarily high early in the season due to a shortage of fruit from Sunshine Coast growers who were impacted by floods earlier in the year and planted fewer runners as a result.
“However, with the late August peak yet to come, consumers can expect to see more strawberries including more premium Piñata strawberries on shelves. We’re confident that consumers will see the value in the eating experience and choose premium,” Scurr said.