Food and Agribusiness

Why African entrepreneurs are not investing in fruit drying?

Sub-Saharan Africa is home to many fruit crops. However, every year large volumes of this fruit go to waste: those that vendors are unable to sell are left to rot in the street while some are never even harvested. Yet, there is a large international market for dried fruit, particularly as consumers worldwide adopt healthier lifestyles. A lot of commentators say entrepreneurs are missing an opportunity by not drying this excess fruit and selling it to local and international consumers. But is it really that simple to start a fruit-drying operation? A lot of the fruit grown in Africa is not the correct cultivar for drying. A viable fruit drying business is a capital-intensive business model and has to have scale; international buyers are not interested in purchasing only small quantities. It can take up to 15 tonnes of fresh mangoes to obtain one tonne of dried fruit.

Major global players in fruit drying market are Graceland Fruit, Sunbeam Foods, Murray River Organics, Australian Premium Dried Fruits, Angas Park, Sunsweet Growers, Alfoah & Three Squirrel.

Read more at HowWeMadeItInAfrica