This month avocado growers across the Bay of Plenty and Northland are renewing their supply contracts for export, with Avoco’s favourable returns for a sixth-consecutive year expected to win support from even more growers.
Marketing and communications manager Steve Trickett says Avoco has historically remained humble about its strong financial performances. But its executive team and staff from six packhouses supporting Avoco believe there’s never a better time to supply the company with export fruit.
“After six years, we’ve created a network of the best selection of customers across Australia and Asia, all the while building on our strengths and experience with export logistics and supply chain management,” says Steve.
“With strong brands such as Avanza working so well for us in Asia, we’ve struck a formula we know works – both for our customers and our growers back home. Our financial returns last season are proof of that.”
Last season, Avoco exported 1.87 million trays, or 63 per cent of the industry’s export volume.
Final payments made to Avoco’s 800-plus avocado growers in April showed the company continues to lead the way with Orchard Gate Returns, despite challenges of a below-par season for fruit quality. Its pool of growers was preparing for tray returns in the mid to high-teens, but prudent management in various critical areas enabled Avoco to reward growers with OGR payments up into the twenties on a weighted average basis.
The upcoming season’s NZ crop will be larger, but not the ‘bumper’ harvest earlier predicted.
Early estimates suggest the total industry crop will be up somewhere between 20-25 per cent, resulting in an indicative forecast volume of between 3.5 million and 3.8 million trays.
Avoco is planning to use its share of volume to ship about 75 per cent of fruit to a mix of retail and wholesale markets in Australia, with the balance distributed across Asia and exported under the Avanza brand.
Within Asia, the markets receiving the greatest volume will continue to be South Korea and Japan, together with measured increases in Singapore, Thailand and India, and growth in new markets of China and Taiwan.
For the Australian market, Avoco will allocate around 80 per cent of its Australian volume to key retail chains so growers continue to benefit from higher overall returns.
Avoco will also work closely with importers-handlers in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria states, who are refining their integrated clearance processes and operations. This will lead to greater efficiencies relating to the movement of fruit from port to warehouse, helping mitigate quality risks associated with fruit age.
Back home, Steve says Avoco is also supporting growers with research and technical advice aimed at improving fruit quality. “When you combine our focus on supply chain management and orchard best practice, with our outstanding financial performances year in, year out, Avoco offers a very compelling proposition for growers.
“This is the year that anyone undecided about who to supply needs to make the move to Avoco.”