09 November 2023, Maharashtra: AgroStar announced that its subsidiary, INI Farms has shipped its first consignment of ‘Kimaye’ branded bananas to Fresh Del Monte in Europe, opening new horizons for the export of fresh Indian fruits.
The pilot was executed by INI Farms in collaboration with the Agricultural Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), along with support from ICAR-Central Institute for Subtropical Horticulture (CISH), Lucknow for technical assistance, Fresh Del Monte for marketing and distribution in Europe, and Maersk for logistics. The export venture was flagged off on 9th November by APEDA Chairman Shri Abhishek Dev from Baramati, Maharashtra.
Over the years, APEDA-registered INI Farms has earned a reputation for its strong sourcing infrastructure with inbuilt SOPs and enhanced the quality and shelf life of bananas to meet the stringent requirements of the European market.
Sharing her thoughts on the momentous occasion, Purnima Khandelwal, CEO, INI Farms said, “We are delighted to partake in this trial shipment aimed at cementing India’s presence in the banana trade in Europe. The success of this trial shipment promises to unlock fresh prospects for our banana farmers in a market as quality-conscious as Europe.
Over the years, our brand ‘Kimaye’ has become a well-known global consumer F&V brand out of India, synonymous with great quality and food safety. We are proud to join hands with thousands of banana farmers across India as we cater to the growing global demand for Indian bananas.”
Shardul Sheth, Co-founder & CEO, AgroStar, expressed his enthusiasm, stating, “India is the largest producer of bananas in the world. We see massive opportunities in banana exports and its potential to transform the lives of banana farmers across the country. We are committed to working closely with our farmers and partners and make it the first billion-dollar revenue fruit category from India.
We extend our heartfelt gratitude to APEDA, ICAR, and all our cherished partners. Their unwavering support and invaluable contributions have been pivotal in steering us towards this momentous occasion.”
“We are proud to be the first company to market and distribute Indian bananas in Europe and to be a member of the partnership that made this happen,” said Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh, Fresh Del Monte’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Opening a new source of bananas to the entire European continent is a huge milestone and we hope this is just the beginning. We see this as a win-win for all parties involved, including consumers and banana growers across India. Thank you to our partners in this endeavour whose expertise in various sectors made this possible.”
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