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Suhanra Conradie, CEO of Summer Citrus from South Africa, Discusses Rebranding, Growing Demand and What's Next

Suhanra Conradie, CEO of Summer Citrus from South Africa, Discusses Rebranding, Growing Demand and What's Next



SOUTH AFRICA - Citrus from South Africa is now in season, and as the program winds up, retailers can look forward to growing resources and initiatives to answer the increasing demand. The group Summer Citrus from South Africa (SCSA) is helping to drive those efforts this year, representing 230 South African citrus growers who consolidate their logistics, marketing, and sales efforts to bring the finest citrus fruit to market during the U.S. summer season.

Summer Citrus

CEO, Suhanra Conradie, spoke with me recently about this new era in growth for the group, and what we can expect as the summer gets underway.

Suhanra Conradie, CEO, Summer Citrus from South Africa“Summer Citrus from South Africa is available throughout the entire summer season. Because citrus is such a versatile item that can easily be enjoyed as a healthy and portable snack as well as a great flavor addition to summer grilling, beverages and refreshing desserts, there is no wrong time to promote it!” Suhanra tells me. “Retailers can expect easy peelers to be available as of the end of May, while navel oranges will follow in late June and can plan for promotional periods anytime during the summer months.”

As summer warms up, SCSA is evolving with a group-wide re-brand for expanded marketing efforts in 2016. Part of the brand’s marketing efforts include the launch of a new website this month along with a first-ever digital consumer promotion in July. Expect elevated social media presence and blogger partnerships throughout the summer as well.

From left to right: Johan Mouton, Mouton Citrus; Mark Greenberg, Capespan North America; Miles Fraser-Jones, AMC Direct, Inc.; Mayda Sotomayor-Kirk, Seald Sweet; Mark Hanks, DNE World Fruit LLC

With its four main import partners Seald Sweet, DNE, Capespan, and AMC, as well as current retail partners, SCSA is looking to build on its current program with new and continuing customer support.

“We are very fortunate to have such a fantastic group of partners,” Suhanra, says. “We certainly anticipate our customer base continuing to grow with the number of positive sales conversations our team is having.”

Mike Hulett of Walmart who co-presented with Bryan Silbermann of PMA speaking at the 2016 US Annual Planning Meeting hosted by Summer Citrus from South Africa

So, what has contributed to the increased demand for South African citrus?

Suhanra tells me that consumers are becoming more and more familiar with the fantastic flavor and sweetness of citrus from South Africa and realize the quality of fruit they are purchasing.

“We also fill a critical gap when U.S. citrus is not available. When compared to other summer fruit items, citrus provides an incredible value on a per pound basis. Budget savvy shoppers will be drawn to messaging that helps them shop smarter while still enjoying the peak of season flavor and quality,” she says.

Dan'l Mackey Almy speaking at the 2016 US Annual Planning Meeting hosted by Summer Citrus from South Africa

Until this year, the group of citrus growers represented by this new brand was known in the U.S. market as the Western Cape Citrus Producers Forum. As SCSA examined how best to represent its products to a consumer audience and put the group’s best marketing foot forward, SCSA knew it wanted to have a brand that shoppers could connect with and easily understand. 

“Summer Citrus from South Africa was born from a desire to clearly communicate the seasonality and origin of the fruit. In designing the brand, it was important to us to create a logo that was crisp and clean – something that the modern shopper could relate to,” Suhanra adds.

SCSA introduced the new re-brand at Viva Fresh, but will have a much larger presence at United Fresh with a new 10x30 booth. Visit Summer Citrus from South Africa at booth number 1731 next month in Chicago, Illinois.

See you all there!

Summer Citrus From South Africa 

 



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Summer Citrus from South Africa

Summer Citrus from South Africa represents a group of 230 South African citrus growers who consolidate their logistics,...