CHINA: Demonstration encourages love for avocado

by  Anouk Sijmonsma, Fresh Plaza


Ready-to-eat avocados
“We were one of the first companies to import avocado into China before Chinese consumers knew about this item. At the beginning, we did go through a hard time. We could only move half a container every two weeks. After that, our effort paid off. Currently, we are importing 3 to 4 containers per week from Mexico and Chile. In the near future we will also launch imports from Peru,” explains Jason of Supafresh.


“About 70% of our volumes still go through the wholesale market, but our retail segment is increasing quickly. More and more consumers like eating avocados, know about the product and require the ready-to-eat avocados, especially our food service clients. That is why we decided to invest in an avocado ripening facility. Now we can ripen 40 pallets at the same time, and supply the avocados in different stages of ripening, according to the requirements of our consumers.”


“Avocado is becoming a more popular ingredient in salads. It is also used in soups and as a side dish  for Japanese sushi. Juice bars have started to use avocados combined with apples and pears for juices and smoothies. The ready-to-eat market is becoming bigger and bigger. However, on the wholesale market, our clients still prefer firm and green avocados. They know that avocados should be eaten when soft and ripe, but they believe that the green fruit can provide longer shelf life. As our business is growing, we are optimistic that more and more ripened avocados can be sold through the wholesale market in the near future.”


Bring avocados into the West of China
“Avocados are very popular in the big cities at the East coast. In the centre and Western parts of China, avocados are still a relatively novel product. We can see the potential demand there. Next to our branch in Shanghai, we opened branches in Guangzhou and Beijing, and also in Wuhan and Chengdu, which are the main cities located in the middle and Western part of China. We are very excited about bringing our new products into these regions.”


Supafresh is an import and wholesale company. In addition, the company is expanding its retail business and food service. It has sales channels through E-commerce, TV shopping and physical stores in the centre of Shanghai. The company’s food service supplies hotels and restaurants with ready-to-eat fresh produce.


Next to the avocado, the company imports coconuts from Thailand, Spanish citrus, raspberries and blackberries from Mexico, and apples from New Zealand.


Source: Fresh Plaza

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