THE NEWSLETTER TO SHARE FRESH NEWS, TRENDS, AND EVENTS
We are so happy to share the latest news from SNFL Group again. We continue supporting you, our licensed growers, in the field, to always try to improve your table grape production and develop the best varieties for the consumers. We do trust in your feedback to build a healthier future, each day, every day. We have been multiplying the conversations in the last months, through global open days, congresses, technical visits, social media, etc., to make sure we coNNect with your expectations.
The table grape season will be closing with about 95 million boxes in California
The local table grapes industry in the United States is mostly concentrated in California, beginning the harvest season in Coachella Valley. The earliest varieties are harvested in May, and move towards the north of the San Joaquin Valley, sometimes extending the commercialization until January. With around 85,000 bearing estimate acreage of table grapes, including over 26,000 acres of SNFL’s varieties, mostly Ivory™, Allison™, and GreatGreen™. In 2021, California table grape growers harvested more than 97 million boxes of grapes, including up to 75% of them for the domestic market.
Regardless of the logistic issues and increased cost of production, sending grapes from California worldwide has become more challenging but still worth it. Some Asian markets such as Vietnam, Japan, the Philippines, and Taiwan are niche markets willing to pay for high-quality product as are the varieties provided by SNFL.
California table grape growers have faced new challenges -unpredictable weather conditions such as uneven temperatures during spring, heat waves, cold temperatures, rain, and up and down temperature – that have forced growers to be more aware and attentive to what is happening at each phenological stage. SNFL North America team is providing a continuous support to the licensees to make sur they get the best varieties from their fields, being much precise with each application to make the most accurate decisions and to get the best performance of the varieties.
Regardless of the circumstances of the season, we are expecting a positive end to the harvest season, rounding a production of 95 million boxes.
In this context, we bring you the story of Ron Kazarian and his experience with the SNFL varieties, told in his own words.
Ron Kazarian and his son Karnig, from Mesa Ranch, in Fowler CA
“In 1967, after I finished up my tour of duty with the Peace Corps, I came home from Ethiopia to own a 160-acre vineyard with my brother, Mel. With great enthusiasm and no experience, I began the process of learning by trial and error. Almost 60 years later, every vine has been pulled and replaced with the most current varieties and trellis supports. My goal was to use the Sheehan varieties to achieve quality and quantity to sustain the profitability of the ranch.
Over the years, my experience with table grapes has tortured me with mealybugs, cracks, insufficient color, soft berries, mildew, rain, hail, repacks, bad arrivals, and probably a few more that have kept me awake at night. Fortunately for growers, field workers, packers, and consumers, the industry has moved to develop and improve varieties that are more farmer-friendly. On the whole, the Sheehan varieties have a larger natural size and require very little Gib.
Varieties like Krissy™, Ivory™, Allison™, and Great Green™ are a pleasure to work with because I have the confidence they will always size to the competition of the market.
Another benefit of the Sheehan red varieties, such as Allison™ and Timco™ , is the ease of color. For years, fighting color in my Crimson field was exhausting. Color and size are critical to achieving pack-outs that make or break a season.
As I approach my last few seasons, nothing has given me more pleasure than farming table grapes. There is a certain satisfaction in walking under the canopy to see the beautiful bunches hanging down the row like soldiers ready to go to market. In my opinion, there is no other permanent crop as challenging as table grapes. The risks and rewards are breathtaking. The progress of the industry has been phenomenal and the new varieties on the horizon will only make it better.”
DID YOU KNOW?
Table Grapes for Natural and Healthy Snacking Worldwide. Focusing on the Asian Market
79% of global consumers’ definition of what a snack can be has evolved over the last 3 years and snacking has begun to take on new meaning, especially in China (84%), the U.S.(84%), and India (83%) where consumers are particularly likely to say their snacking choices have evolved. Consumers are looking for snacks to improve physical (80%), emotional (80%), and mental (75%) health, as well as their social health (65%), as snacking serves also to connect with others. Snacking is both a source of nutrition and indulgence, of social connection, inspiration, and purpose.1
Thinking about healthy options, fresh fruits are always at the top of the list and the main recommendation from healthcare professionals worldwide.
Actually, fruit consumers, both in USA and UK, stated that grapes are the most snackable fruit. In Germany, grapes are the 3rd fruit preferred for snacking. On the other hand, unlike berries, grapes are an affordable everyday fruit that can be purchased with significant frequency. 2
In this context, table grape production is projected up to +25,5 million tonnes for the 2021-2022 campaign worldwide, with Asia representing +46 % of the global consumption, followed by Europe at 15% and America at 14%. 5
Table Grape Consumption 2021-2022 Season
So, which perception do Chinese consumers have toward grapes?
CHINESE CONSUMERS ARE RATIONAL MOTIVATION-DRIVEN GRAPE CONSUMERS
Grapes are underrepresented in the fruit basket, with only 29% of Chinese consumers purchasing grapes 3. However, when they chose grapes, Chinese consumers prefer seedless, sweet, and medium-priced grapes. Safety and quality characteristics, such as clean appearance, freshness, firmness, and taste, are ranked as the most important grape attributes. 3, 4
RED COLOUR STILL DOMINATES THE CHINESE MARKET
Red color is still the #1 preferred color among 70% of Chinese grapes shoppers, as it gives people a festive feeling and it arises the desire to eat; red varieties are linked to sweeter flavours. 3 Also, red, and black-colored grapes are associated with featuring more nutrients and anthocyanin, which are good for health.
As the Asian Market has the biggest table grape consumption in the world, there is a real opportunity to offer premium quality grapes to those markets, looking for new colorful, highly sweet flavored, and crunchy grapes. Chinese consumers are willing to pay more for high-quality grapes, or special flavors and health attributes.
1. The Third Annual State of Snacking – 2021 Global Consumer Trends Snacking Trends Study by Mondelez International, The Harris Poll and NextAtlas – https://bit.ly/3wYPcsL
2. AM FRESH-commissioned study run in 2019. Online survey among 2.000 UK fruit shoppers, 1.475 USA fruit shoppers and 1.300 fruit shoppers in Germany.
3. SNFL GROUP Internal Report based on online research across 300 Chinese table grape consumers. Sample is representative by age, geographical region, and gender. January 12th, 2022.
4. Mu Weisong; Li Chengcheng; Tian Dong; Feng Jianying – British Food Journal, 2016, 118(1): 231-246. – Chinese consumers’ behavior and preference to table grapes Based on a comparative study of 2009 and 2014.
5. Foreign Agriculture Service USDA – Fresh Apples, Grapes, and Pears: World Markets and Trade – December 2021
SPOTLIGHT ON OUR GROWERS
Meet our licensed growers around the world.
SNFL has a very exciting list of varieties with great potential for South African producers. It was good to see there are varieties with disease-tolerant genes, which will have a big impact not only on consumer health benefits but also on the input cost for the grower. Some of these varieties are already in trial blocks in South Africa. This gives us a lot of hope for the future of grape production.
Jaco Engelbrecht, Marketing & Viticulture, Voor Groenberg Nursery
Among the current proposals of licensed varieties, we see that those provided by SFNL are very well adjusted to the needs and requirements of the Peruvian producer, and have generated a revolution in several grape valleys due to their high productivity, easy agronomic management, export quality, flavor and most importantly, profitability. It is a tool for the development and consolidation of Peruvian grapes for the world. We are very excited about the new varieties the company develops to be always 2 steps ahead, thank you very much!
Arturo Zaldivar, Country Manager Peru, PREMIUM CHOICE GLOBAL LTD
At El Pedregal, our grapes are carefully cultivated and harvested at the right time to ensure the best properties and excellent condition. We are working with SNFL’s table grapes to guarantee our clients worldwide high-quality fresh grapes. With AllisonTM, we can offer large-caliber, very firm berries, and very good post-harvest conditions. This large, crunchy bright red variety is a growing premium alternative to provide North America from November to April. SNFL is coming with new innovative varieties for the future that definitively will probably make easier and more sustainable growing the plants but also meet with the consumers expectations.
Andre Fattore, Sales Manager, El Pedregal, Peru
MEET THE TEAM
If there is one thing that sets SNFL Group apart, it is a team made up of people who are passionate about what they do.
Our professional family is growing!
“Within my professional career, international trade has been my main task. I appreciate being part of the SNFL Group team, a company in full global growth within the world of grape development.”
Fabio da Silva Cunha
Technical Manager Perú
“With more than 16 years working with grapevines in countries such as Brazil, Ecuador, and Peru, I am excited to be part of the SNFL Group and to contribute to the development of new table grape varieties and take them to the next level by providing the best recommendations to growers.”
“I am excited to be part of SNFL GROUP, a world-leading company. I am thrilled to be able to contribute with my experience and knowledge acquired over the years in the Table Grape World.”
Customer Relations China
“Thanks to +25 years of experience in international business and global supply chain, I am committed to introducing new varieties of high-added value fruits, enhanced by modern agriculture technology and global best practices to China that will create wealth for all stakeholders and local communities. The huge potential market in China will not only bring significant returns to international players like SNFL, but also stir innovation in China. I aim to make SNFL Group a major player in the table grape industry in China.”
Head of Finance UK
“I’m a Chartered Accountant having trained at EY where I managed audit teams working with businesses of various sizes (Start-ups to Listed) in many different sectors. I joined Secret Escapes, an online travel agent start-up, as Finance Manager in 2016 at a point when the business was accelerating its growth both European and worldwide. I managed a couple of operational teams as we scaled the capacity of the finance function, with revenue up 500% at the pre-COVID peak, before leaving as Head of Accounting in late 2021. Azer a brief time at a FinTech scale-up in 2022 I’ve spent most of this year travelling through South America remains on my bucket list.” I’m looking forward to supporting the SNFL growth ambitions, having joined at an exciting time for the business, and meeting everyone involved in the different functions. I’ll be working to establish a finance function in London, whilst also contributing to all the great work we currently do within the group team. On a personal front, I’m from London, a passionate sports fan – particularly football and formula one, and someone who enjoys many fitness pursuits.”
Josep Jove Estiarte
Group Managing Director at SNFL Group
“It is a priority for SNFL to be close to our licensed growers and to the main stakeholders in the industry in order to strengthen our leadership worldwide.
Over the last few months, we have shared experiences with many of you that have participated in our field days in Spain, or in the different congresses and global fairs, and we are very thrilled with the results that we have seen in the Grape Genesis breeding program and its first selections, as we believe these selections and the main objectives of the program meets, not only with growers expectations, but are also with the main consumers’ trends. Our commitment is to deliver a collection of the table grape varieties that are very much aligned with consumer expectations and growers demands.
Our participation in the Asia Fruit Attraction fair and the opportunity to meet up with numerous Asian retailers and importers, that today represent a large proportion of the consumers worldwide, taught us about the main demands and consumer trends in that big market and what is important and essential when selecting a table grape variety. We believe that the Grape Genesis program and the collection of varieties that are being developed under that program, do meet these main market trends and requirements and have a complete alignment with the main issues growers face worldwide.
Over the coming months, our varieties will continue to show their potential in the different trial blocks in the southern hemisphere. It will be a pleasure for us, at SNFL, to welcome you to any of the different events that will be organized in the different countries.”
WHAT HAVE YOU MISSED
Open Day Brazil
We had an amazing and productive open day with our licensees from Brazil!
It was a great success thanks to the +150 growers and their good vibes. We are very fortunate to work hand in hand with them to develop new table grape varieties for a sustainable future of the industry.
This year’s Fruit Attraction was grapeful!
We were delighted to be there to meet growers, retailers, importers, whostopped by our stand to taste our delicious varieties and learn about the ones to come.
It was wonderful to meet more than 30 partners on our stand, and coNNect with hundreds of new growers, retailers, wholesalers, importers, from around the word. Part of our team have also participated to Grape Attraction within the fair. Dr. Juan Carreño, Head Breeder and, Josep Estiarte, General Manager, have shared their technical and commercial vision of evolving industry challenges, where retailers, distributors and growers must work together to offer more flavorful, sustainable, and healthy grapes to the consumer worldwide.