The South American Rojo Brillante kaki campaign is gaining momentum and the fruit is becoming a good alternative for consumption also in the spring and summer months. The Valencian company The Natural Hand, specialized in shipping this fruit over long distances, has already become the largest importer of kakis during the off-season.
Juan Carlos Martínez, giving a talk at a plantation in Peru.
"We have been working for 4 years with producers and growers' associations in South America, especially in Peru, where we have transferred our know-how based on our experience in Spain. This applies to handling the crop in the field, pre-packing and transport, since it is not an easy fruit to work with over long distances. Every year, we travel there to monitor and review the whole process at origin, which allows us to manage costs very well," says Juan Carlos Martínez, CEO of The Natural Hand. "Once we receive the product in Spain, we finish removing the astringency; a process that is carried out partly at origin and at destination, which helps us work more efficiently."
"After several years betting strongly on this project, we have become the largest importers of South American Rojo Brillante kakis in Europe, with a marketing window of between two and three months. We are the only company capable of supplying kakis until mid-July," he says.
The kakis that The Natural Hand handles come mainly from Peru and, to a lesser extent, from Uruguay and Chile. "This project wasn't launched with the goal of reaching large volumes, but of achieving the best quality, as we do in Spain; the quality that is representative of our brand. We have found Peru to be the best place to focus on quality. It is a country with a wide variety of climates and, fortunately, we have managed to find production areas that are ideal for kaki cultivation," says Juan Carlos.
"The Peruvian producers we work with trusted us to carry out this project, given that around 90% of Spanish kaki exports over distances of more than 23 days are operated by our company," he said.
"We have been positively surprised by their success in the market at this time of year. A fresh kaki is very appetizing in summer; that's why we are calling this product 'summer kaki'. Remarkably, the countries where it is most consumed is where temperatures are warmer and more stable," says the CEO of this company. "We market this product all over the world, from Europe and Canada to Asia and the Middle East, offering 3 different quality categories with prices suitable for all types of customers," he said.