Steady shipments of Sekoya blueberries from Peru underway

Sekoya blueberries are currently arriving from Peru and will increase in volume through September with peak arrivals in October and November. This group of blueberry varieties has been chosen for specific characteristics that are favorable for both growers and consumers. “The four varieties under the Sekoya group are Pop, Beauty, Crunch and Grande,” says Ryan Lockman with North Bay Produce. “These selected varietals offer premium texture, flavor, shelf life and size along with being grower friendly.”

The four varieties under the Sekoya group are Pop, Beauty, Crunch and Grande.

For North Bay, this is its first year it has notable volumes available throughout the U.S. and it is working on a year-round program of Sekoya varieties for both retail and foodservice availability. (Last year it conducted test regions to evaluate the varieties.) “Currently, Peru is the largest growing region for these unique blueberries but plantings and production continue to ramp up in other regions such as the U.S., Mexico, Europe and Africa to keep year-round availability progressing as demand continues to grow,” says Lockman.

Plant availability vs. scaling up
However, he also notes there are a few additional challenges with this group of varieties outside of the supply chain and logistics issues that traditional blueberries encounter. “Plant availability has been a challenge along with scaling up as fast as we want to, as we meet consumer demand,” says Lockman.

The North Bay Produce team. 

Meanwhile demand has been high at retail and Lockman said that promotional events such as Fall Creek/Sekoya Field Days have been very successful with retail customers along with individual sampling events it has conducted. “We believe that once these blues hit the consumers’ lips that they will return to their favorite store for more,” he says. Consumption is also anticipated to develop as the product becomes more readily available. Currently, North Bay has organic and conventional Sekoya varieties available in 12 x 6oz, 8 x 18oz and 12 x 18oz packages and it will offer Sekoya in conventional and organic on a year-round basis.

Looking ahead, Lockman notes that this group of blueberry varieties is increasing in acreage in no chill and high chill environments. “We look forward to having a low chill available within the next two to three years,” he says.

For more information:
Sharon Robb
North Bay Produce, Inc.
Tel: +1 (231) 946-1941  

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