Gold3 - Are we driving the right behaviour?
The beginning of the Gold3 story followed similar lines to previous Zespri new varieties released to growers. Small quotas of pre-commercial licence were released to growers in 2008 with the aim to learn more about all facets of the variety. The first small commercial harvest of around 1million trays took place in 2011. The structure of how Gold3 licences were to be made available wasn’t confirmed at this stage, but it was anticipated that Gold3 was to make a gradual introduction into the Zespri portfolio as confidence in the variety increased. The advent of Psa-V into New Zealand, and the subsequent demise of Zespri’s pioneer gold variety Hort16a, drastically changed this situation. Gold3 was fast tracked through the commercialisation process and thrust into the limelight as the replacement premium Zespri Gold variety. By the end of 2013 Zepsri had issued Gold3 licences which equated to somewhere in the range of 50-60million trays of a promising but largely untried variety. This was destined for international markets which had only previously ever dealt with 29.9million trays of Zespri gold (Kiwiflier, August, 2012). This report follows the Gold3 story and in specific looks at the challenges faced in providing a consistent, high taste product to the consumer. For Gold3 to be successful it is important that the correct incentives are in place to encourage positive grower behaviour. Three key areas are investigated – how well have Zespri highlighted the risk of low taste Gold3, the relevance and success of research and extension, and the financial drivers created by the Zespri Gold3 payment model. The report also explores the trend between yield and taste and whether a grower should be considering lowering cropload in order to grow higher taste fruit. My work for a kiwifruit management company is centred around increasing grower profitability. This means growing crops that are the most financially beneficial for the grower, and I want to delve into whether this is in conflict with what the markets (and Zespri) demand.... [Show full abstract]