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Turners & Growers Rolls Out Global Kiwifruit Plans

 14 June 2010

News Release

Turners & Growers Rolls Out Global Plans for ENZARed Kiwifruit
Fifty-one years ago on June 15 1959, Turners & Growers coined the name ‘Kiwifruit’ and took it to the world.  That milestone this week sees the company rolling out global plans for its ENZARed™ kiwifruit, tipped to become the premium kiwifruit variety for international consumers.
ENZARed™ is the world’s first commercialised red kiwifruit variety.  The fruit’s striking red starburst centre, exotic flavour and creamy texture have earned it the title of most exciting new variety to hit international markets since gold kiwifruit more than a decade ago.
Turners & Growers owns the global Intellectual Property Rights to the new variety allowing the company to set up growing hubs for ENZARed™ in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres to ensure year-round supply to international supermarkets.
Turners & Growers CEO, Jeff Wesley has just returned from visiting Italy, France and China where Turners & Growers is establishing the ENZARed ™ crops in the Northern Hemisphere.
China is now in its third season of commercial production of ENZARed™ where domestic demand for the fruit is so strong that export volumes of the fruit have been limited.
Jeff Wesley says that at the ENZARed™ Kiwi Project at Dujiangjan in China’s Sichuan province, Turners & Growers is providing technical support and expertise to assist local growers to adopt and implement best practice growing techniques to produce fruit to the highest global standards.
“ENZARed’s™ unique taste suits the Asian palate and the European market where it sold last year at a 17% premium to gold kiwifruit.”
In Italy, Turners & Growers is growing several thousand ENZARed™ plants to establish large ENZARed™ orchards in both Italy and France.  By 2012 the company will have around 100 hectares of ENZARed™ growing in the two countries to boost supply to the European market during Europe’s winter.
“During our visit we were able to see the first ENZARed™ fruit produced on grafted vines in Italy and are extremely pleased with the fruit’s development in Italy’s growing conditions.”
Turners & Growers is working to establish New Zealand as the Southern Hemisphere’s growing hub for ENZARed™.  It has a major propagation project underway at its research facility in Kerikeri to produce ENZARed™ plants and grafting material for next year when Turners & Growers will be grafting several thousand ENZARed™ plants on its orchards here.
The potential size of the market for ENZARed™ grown and exported from New Zealand is similar to gold kiwifruit, which currently earns over $250 million annually for the New Zealand kiwifruit industry.
“The global market for this premium new variety is extremely strong.  It is the type of rare “break-through” new product that becomes the new benchmark in its category for supermarkets and consumers around the world.”
 We are very proud that as the New Zealand Company that named the ‘Kiwifruit’ back in 1959 we are leading the market with this red “star” of the global kiwifruit industry in 2010,” he said.
This Tuesday, (15th June) marks the 51st anniversary of Turners & Growers coining the name ‘Kiwifruit’ in 1959 when the company was establishing the export market for NZ-grown Chinese Gooseberries in the United States.
The company has recently begun a high-profile billboard campaign to highlight the need for a review of the now decade old Kiwifruit Export Regulations 1999, which prevent Turners & Growers and other owners of lucrative new kiwifruit varieties from selling their fruit overseas.
About Turners & Growers:
Turners & Growers is New Zealand’s leading distributor, marketer and exporter of premium fresh produce and the largest corporate horticulture investor in New Zealand.    Turners & Growers is also a large-scale grower of several fruit varieties including Kiwifruit.
In January 2003, Turners & Growers merged with ENZA (formerly the New Zealand Apple & Pear Marketing Board). ENZA is a leading player in the global pipfruit trade, with strong global customer relationships and a history of innovation. Following the merger, Turners & Growers saw an opportunity to pursue a new kiwifruit variety development programme using ENZA’s development background.
Turners & Growers remains at the forefront of the kiwifruit industry with several new varieties that it has developed and tested for production and export from New Zealand. The company holds the global Intellectual Property Rights to ENZAGold™, ENZARed™ and the regional rights to Summerkiwi.™
Turners and Growers has already started converting many of the company’s own Hayward vines to its new varieties in New Zealand. ENZAGold is already in commercial production.  The first Summerkiwi fruit were picked in Kerikeri this season and the variety will be in commercial production in New Zealand next year.
Turners & Growers wants the right to be able to export, without restriction, its own kiwifruit varieties internationally.  The Kiwifruit Regulations 1999 prevent owners of Kiwifruit varieties, other than monopoly kiwifruit marketer Zespri, from exporting kiwifruit outside New Zealand and Australia. - ENDS-

ENZARed™ Picture Captions:

1 & 2.  Turners & Growers ENZARed, the new 'star' of the global kiwifruit industry.
3. Red-blooded Kiwis: Turners & Growers CEO, Jeff Wesley with the first ENZARed fruit on the vines in Italy.

4.   Turners & Growers CEO, Jeff Wesley and Marc Le Prince,  ENZA's European Programme Manager with the first ENZARed plants that will be released for commercial growing in Italy and France at the end of this year.


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