The international markets are transitioning from North Hemisphere to South hemisphere production. This edition will give you a glimpse of the upcoming ARRA varieties’ harvests in Australia, Peru and Southern Africa. With our varieties in over 30 countries, we aim to ensure a consistent high-quality supply 12 months a year.

Coming Soon: ARRA Fire Crunch™ in Peru

The red variety that is becoming the focal point of the ARRA program in Peru is ARRA Fire Crunch™. This early-mid red variety boasts a unique fire-red colour. The crunchy, large berries and well-balanced taste provide a supreme eating experience. It’s a fertile and easy-to-grow variety with uniform colour that stays red on the vine and doesn’t get dark over time. It also tolerates rain and offers unparalleled cold storage capability as well as shelf-life capacity.

Everyone wants ARRA Fire Crunch™ - First Glimpse in Piura

Karl Conrads, Founder and CEO of Grapasa, the territorial representative for the ARRA™ varieties in South America, provides a sneak peek.

“This year the ARRA Fire Crunch variety makes its debut in Peru. The vines were planted only 10 months ago and are already demonstrating their qualities such as fertility, ease of management and outstanding fruit quality.”

The first harvest of this season will start on 20th of November. 

Click to see what Georgios Bitsakos, Grapa’s Head of Brand Marketing, has to say about the ultimate red variety (in California August 2023).

ARRA Honey Pop™ - This is WOW!

ARRA Honey Pop at the test block in Piura is showing good fertility, uniform bunches, good berry size, good shape, good colour, good crunchiness, or in Karl’s words: “this is WOW!”

Managers from a leading international retailer visiting Peruvian growers, mentioned that their favorites are ARRA Fire Crunch and ARRA Honey Pop. Stay tuned to see how the season unfolds…

Click here to let us know if you are planning on visiting Peru, we would be delighted to coordinate a visit to see the ARRA Fire Crunch and ARRA Honey Pop at their best and some other surprises….

Increasing demand for ARRA Varieties in Australia

Harvest has just started for the ARRA varieties in Emerald, Queensland and will then be followed by other regions as seen below through the beginning of 2024. We are glad to bring you a glimpse of what’s in store and everything that we’ve heard through the grapevine.

Our Priority to Provide Personalized Technical Support

Stephan Nel, the ARRA Varieties Manager in Australia, has been busy visiting the ARRA growers in all regions. Grapa has always made it a priority to provide unique dedicated, personalized technical support and now with Stephan on board, this is exactly what’s happening in Australia.

Weather, Timing and More

Stephan reports that for both Emerald and Sunraysia the crop is slightly lighter than last year, which will hopefully result in even better-quality fruit, leading to much better prices. This season the fertility of most table grape varieties seems to have been affected by the constant rain and overcast days during critical stages of last year’s growing cycle. However, to somewhat balance this out, at the start of this season, there was very good growing weather, much better than in previous years, which has proven ideal for the development.

Specifically, in Sunraysia there was a good start to the season weather-wise with a warm spring resulting in faster development of the bunches. For the last few weeks, there were colder temperatures that slowed things down a bit, making the timing now about 2 weeks earlier than last year and reaching similar timing as in previous seasons.

ARRA Honey Pop and ARRA Sugar Drop: Early Gems in Emerald

All growers are keeping a close eye on ARRA Honey Pop, in both Emerald and in Sunraysia, as they are looking for the ultimate very early white seedless.

In Emerald, John Staier  at Wurlin Pty Ltd has just started the harvest of ARRA Honey Pop. Word traveled fast, and many came to see the first crop for this variety in Emerald close to harvest. Everyone that visited sounds very impressed with John’s ARRA Honey Pop.

ARRA Sugar Drop is also being harvested at present and these sweet, elongated berries are becoming a local favourite.

Also in Emerald, Romeo’s Best and Perfection Fresh will soon start with the harvesting of their ARRA Sugar Drop.

Stephan recounts: “It’s important to emphasize that growers in Emerald normally struggle with fertility, so it’s great to see the good fertility of especially ARRA Honey Pop and ARRA Sugar Drop in this region”.

Market Talk: High Prices and Export Demand

The prices for the domestic market look very promising, but the retailers made it crystal clear that the brix needs to be at the correct level. We are confident that this can be achieved by harvesting at the right timing.

In addition to the strong and growing local market, Australia mainly exports table grapes to Asian countries with China a most dominant destination for many years. Many additional Asian countries are increasingly sourcing table grapes from Australia, which was apparent when the Grapa team at Asia Fruit Logistica met with importers from Vietnam, Thailand, Japan, Philippines, and Hong Kong who visited the ARRA stands and were excited to hear of the availability of ARRA varieties in Australia.

No Struggle with Fertility

ARRA Honey Pop, ARRA Yum!bo and ARRA Mystic Dream are showing very high fertility in Sunraysia. It’s still too early to tell how the fruit will set, but we’ll keep you posted. In some areas, ARRA Sugar Drop is showing very good bunch numbers for an early white variety. Growers are drawn to so many of the ARRA varieties as they are fertile and that is not something they need to struggle with.

The ARRA Buzz and Newbies

There is a real buzz around the new generation of red ARRA varieties and licensees are planting all the vines available for the very new ARRA Fire Crunch as well as orders being made for the other new red variety: ARRA Cherry Crush.

At Alpha Fresh Australia, the Cirillo Family is busy planting additional plots elevating the ARRA program in Australia. It is always invigorating to see new beginning.   

Promising ARRA season ahead in Southern Africa

As the South African and Namibian table grape harvests approach, things look promising. Valuable input from TopFruit’s dedicated technical team and growers echo a resounding commitment to prioritizing quality. This emphasis on quality is pivotal and will define the coming season.

André Agenbag, Viticulturist at TopFruit who provides support to the ARRA™ table grape varieties producers in the Northern Cape and Namibia, reports on the upcoming 2023/24 season from the earliest harvest regions of Southern Africa. Currently André is travelling extensively among growers to ensure maximum technical assistance in the pursuit of obtaining top quality grapes.

Northern Cape - South Africa

“At this stage we are set for a great season. The sizing applications are done, and the grapes are looking very good. There are more than enough bunches, with all the important qualities that are required to ensure exceptional quality table grapes, in line with the markets’ demand.” André Agenbag shares.

The earliest new generation white variety ARRA Honey Pop™, in particular, is looking impressive and producers are excited about the immense potential of this remarkable new table grape variety.

TopFruit will host an ARRA Honey Pop field day in the second half of November at Southern Fruit Growers, which will allow for all producers in the area to observe and experience the benefits of ARRA Honey Pop.

ARRA Honey Pop not only bears outstanding eating quality, with good crunchiness and a hint of Muscat flavour, but it is also very fertile, truly grower friendly with exceptional shelf life and storage capabilities.

Aussenkehr - Namibia

André is excited to announce that the Namibian ARRA table grape varieties are flawless at this stage. All the ARRA table grape varieties have the potential of leading to a successful season and contributing to the success of the growers. “So far it is apparent that ARRA Sweeties™ is once again one of Namibia`s best performing ARRA varieties” André recounts. 

Early Sweet™ harvest commences from this coming week. ARRA Honey Pop is performing well, so stay tuned to updates in the coming editions.

Good development is also seen in ARRA Passion Star™. This variety thrives in desert climates, especially in the arid and semi-arid regions of South Africa and Namibia.

On November 14th, TopFruit will host a field day at Silverlands Vineyards, where growers can come and see the attributes and positive contributions of the varieties.

TopFruit Series of Technical Focus Sessions

This past Friday TopFruit held a focused technical session at their test block, attended by key figures from the industry. This is the 1st of three sessions to build continuity towards harvest and optimal ripeness.  The sessions will be around the pivotal stages: flower/set, veraison and then harvest. There will be an additional session on November 13th for all that could not attend on Friday.

ARRA Cherry Crush™

The Crush Everyone’s talking about!

Tony Calvillo, Vice President of International Business Development, Dayka & Hackett LLC, shared: “Today, we visited the ARRA Cherry Crush—a grape variety that exceeds the expectations of growers, consumers, and retailers alike. We are thrilled to witness its remarkable potential. Boasting an alluring cherry colour, impressive size, abundant production, and a perfect balance of taste and crunch, ARRA Cherry Crush creates a mutually beneficial scenario for discerning producers, consumers, and retailers.”

ARRA Fire Crunch™

Igniting the senses

Just in time for the festive season, the inaugural batch of ARRA Fire Crunch™ made its way from Peru to the USA. Karl Conrads, founder, CEO of Grapasa accompanied the first year vines from budbreak all the way to Walmart facilities in Los Angeles.

Don’t miss the footage, showing this landmark arrival, now the sky’s the limit.

ARRA Passion Fire™

Sharing the passion – Right now in Southern Africa:

“It’s a great, beautiful grape, we are having a great time packing it.” shares Gabriel Viljoen of G.P. Viljoen Farming

We’ve heard other growers excited about this year’s performance.

“The ARRA Passion Fire was probably the most beautiful red grapes around on our farms.”

ARRA Fire Kiss™

Start the season with a Kiss

This year, attendees got a firsthand look at ARRA Fire Kiss™ in Egypt. What stood out was how distinctly different it was from the Flame, leaving no doubt that it is the perfect Flame replacement.