US Open for Business

Despite the difficult situation within which we are all living and being challenged by every day, it’s encouraging to see the number of exciting opportunities that are here now and on the horizon for our growing global Pink Lady® network.

To recap, the driver of these opportunities emerged in December last year when Pink Lady® America (PLA), Brandts Fruits Trees (BFT) and Apple and Pear Australia Limited (APAL) committed to an agreement that brought the United States and the broader Pink Lady® network together. The agreement gave APAL authority over all trade into and out of the United States and Mexico (with the exception of trade from US/Mexico to Canada). APAL was granted sole and exclusive rights and management, to license US/Mexico exporters and importers into its other global jurisdictions.

Since then, despite the restrictions and challenges of our current environment, APAL has managed to license both US based importers and exporters, with product already shipped into the US and from the US into the Gulf States, UK and South East Asia.

As a licensed US exporter, the opportunities for supply into these markets has increased considerably due to a compromised European crop. To further increase those opportunities, US Pink Lady® branded fruit supplementing Southern Hemisphere programs, is supported by extensive brand marketing and promotional activities launched as part of the Selective Market Supply Program (SMSP) in 2019. Growth of Pink Lady in new markets of South East Asia and the Gulf is 134% v last year, and brand investment of over $USD 2m this financial year.

This investment comes through Pink Lady Development (PLD, a joint venture investment vehicle between APAL and Star Fruits) which manages and funds marketing and promotional programs, supported by local marketing and execution agencies into our priority markets of Vietnam, Thailand, UAE, KSA and Qatar. In addition, PLD funds campaigns and programs in other Asian and Gulf markets such as Japan, Taiwan and India. With the growth achieved, PLD will expand to an even broader program for the coming year, with Malaysia being added as a priority market and an additional half a million in marketing investment across all markets The program is implemented by highly skilled FMCG and packaged goods professionals.

With a focus on developing markets outside of the traditional European and UK markets, all those connected across the global Pink Lady® network, face an exciting time ahead. The opportunity the US and Mexico present to us as both a source and destination, is unprecedented. With our US team (a mix of PLA, BFT and APAL members) working hard on a number of fronts (branding, marketing, quality, supply, licensing) we fully expect 2020 and 2021 to be watershed years for the Pink Lady® business. As part of the roll-out of our contemporary Pink Lady® branding (first launched at the end of 2017) in the US and Mexico, a new consumer web site will shortly be launched.

If you are interested in trading between the US/Mexico and APAL’s existing jurisdictions please contact us. We have APAL management and market support on the ground and can develop strong programs to support your fruit with promotions and marketing.. We have a capable US team that are keen to support you.

Andrew Hooke

About the Author:

Chief Operating Officer, Apple and Pear Australia Limited