Oppy’s newly-expanded international team identifies opportunity in South African plums
U.S. market reintroduces plums from South Africa after nearly a decade
Strategically bolstering its international presence in recent years, Oppy is among the first to offer South African plums to the North American marketplace following an eight-year hiatus.
As U.S. authorities tightened import regulations for Chilean plums following pest detection in early 2021, Sila Louw, who joined the leading grower, marketer and distributor in the interim to head its South African operations, proposed complementing Oppy’s plum offerings with fruit grown on his home soil — first arriving on the East Coast in late January.
Louw shared, “We look forward to delighting consumers with a variety of first-class-eating-quality plums, offering a diverse collection of flavors, textures and colors, and a dependable item for retail shelves.”
The Oppy team is reporting excellent growing conditions and crop quality this season, with supplies planned through March. Varieties already in the market include Ruby Sun, Ruby Crisp, Fortune, Black Pearl and Midnight Gold, with African Delight, Angeleno and Larry Ann to follow in the coming months.
“While we have brought grapes and citrus from South Africa for many years, it’s a particularly exciting time to dive deeper into new items with a fresh edge, allowing us to offer exclusive options to our customers,” said Oppy’s Senior Vice President of Categories and Marketing James Milne.
Continuing to bring Chilean plums to market under strict protocols, Oppy is also currently importing cherries, nectarines, peaches, blueberries and table grapes from the South American country, with apples and kiwifruit arriving soon.
“This is an excellent opportunity to further diversify across growing regions, adding complementary varieties and volumes from Chile,” added Oppy’s Vice President of South American Operations Eric Coty.