Freshplaza.com website reports that South African fresh fruit producer Afrifresh Group has developed a powerful integrated agricultural business model that is improving farming and export efficiency in Africa. According to Afrifresh's new development director Roy Fine, the company has developed from a citrus and grape export agency enterprise into a truly international integrated agricultural business with offices around the world.
Afrifresh has a portfolio of 22 primarily citrus and grape farms that are spread across South Africa and supported by a comprehensive centralised management framework that provides high levels of expertise. The farm configuration is deliberately designed to reduce climate related risk. This, Fine says, is where the strength of the Afrifresh business lies - "We've taken all ... administrative functions into a central point at head office so the farm managers can focus purely on product quality and tonnage production."
According to Fine, the strategy going forward is to grow and diversify the business. "We have recently acquired significant farm holdings in Zimbabwe where we're growing a variety of new products, and we are planning to expand further into sub-Saharan Africa." Significant investment has also been made into the farming side of the business in terms of the latest product varieties, cold storage facilities, packing houses, equipment, support, training and materials, Freshplaza.com website says.
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