In this edition, we bring you the latest news about grapes in Morocco, following the Grapa team’s recent visit to the ARRA™ growers in this North African country.
Mr Rafe Shabaily, director of Les Vergers du Soleil, gave a warm welcome to the Grapa team with his ARRA Passion Fire™ (ARRA 29) grapes. Their amazing colour and great taste are the results of Rafe’s dedicated work and passion of grapes in Morocco.
Rafe sees a great future for this variety in Morocco, as he relates, “The ARRA Passion Fire looks absolutely amazing, good berry size and a very appealing, vibrant red. This year we have some good fortune with the weather conditions with the max-min amplitude often around 25°C which helps enormously in colouration. A consistent, red seedless that performs year in year out is a kind of Holy Grail in Morocco. If this variety produces similar results next season then we have a winner.”
The Grapa team saw and tasted ARRA Sugar Drop just as it should be, as sweet as sugar and crunchy. Rafe and his team are doing a great job of marketing, as well as growing these grapes in Morocco. Rafe is very satisfied with the first impressions of this variety, saying, “Our initial feelings are very positive. Not even the slightest sign of a trace seed can be confidently labelled seedless. We have pulled numerous samples from the tunnels and no signs of marks or browning. In fact, the product looks great, eating quality is absolutely fantastic – crunchy, sweet with a pleasant amount of acidity.”
Being the first Grapa licensee in Morocco, Kamared is one of the companies which has been with Grapa since the Early Sweet days and the personal and commercial relationship between us has continued all these years.
A midseason ARRA selection for both the local and export markets, ARRA 36-35+1 is noticeable for its crop size, large berries and good eating quality, represented in Kamared farms in accordance with Kamared owner, Mr. Abdessamad Kayouh’s request.
Owned by Mr. Youssef Jebha, who is also the president of Cooperative Zaouia, Agricole Guiro is a newcomer to the ARRA growers’ group in Morocco. The Grapa team visited the ARRA Passion Fire (ARRA 29) and ARRA Sugar Drop (ARRA 30) plantations and were impressed by the vine development and the field infrastructure. The technical team, led by Kamared product manager, Mr. Mohamed Dahhak, are doing a remarkable job and the vines’ progression is truly amazing for 3-month-old plants.
The Grapa team was welcomed by the Delassus Taroudant and Marrakesh district farms’ managers, Mr.Charif Larbi and Mr. Mohammed Nafide respectively, who explained the future plans of Delassus by enlarging table grape plantations and selections. Grapa presented the wide spectrum of the ARRA selections which can fit into Delassus’s growing and marketing programme.
In Marrakech, the Grapa team visited the ARRA test block which has given the company an indication of the potential performance of ARRA Passion Fire (ARRA 29) and ARRA Sugar Drop (ARRA 30). Shachar gave the technical team some guidelines about the evaluation of the existing test block and guidance for the future of grapes in Morocco.
The outlook is very positive and Mohammed and the technical team will undoubtedly lead the ARRA project in Delassus to great success.
The joint venture of a large investment company together with Jupiter Marketing, represented by Mr. Phil Dussek, who described to the Grapa team their marketing vision of the farm produce. This large table grape farm in Marrakech, led by EHM CEO, Mr Jean-Marie Graux, together with the highly skilled team led by Mr Miloud Ezzany, the technical farm manager, produce remarkable ARRA Sweeties™ (ARRA 15) in the first year of production.
We would like to thank all our growers and friends in Morocco for their warm hospitality and faith in the ARRA varieties.
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